Monday, October 31, 2011

Life...

Baby
Today I am 22 weeks along! Holy Moly!! I started to freak out a little bit last night because in 2 weeks I will already be in my third trimester. I feel so unprepared – we don’t have any baby furniture, bedding, toys, car seats, strollers….I haven’t taken any childbirth classes yet or even started doing my research on natural birth and breastfeeding. As happy as I am that we now have a house and space for when baby gets here, I feel as though cleaning and buying things for the new place has consumed most of my time lately.

We have started to buy some clothes though (hehe, imagine that) and this past weekend I found a new favorite store: Half Price Books. The store was clean, organized and full of gently used books. I bought 7 baby books for $30.00. And honestly who cares if they are new or not because once baby gets ahold of them they will be torn and full of slober and crusty food anyways. Greg and I are making it our goal to read more to baby at night. I want her to be able to recognize both of our voices and I think it will make Greg feel more involved with her pre-birth development J

Baby Haus is sure an active little thing. I feel her moving and kicking in the morning, after lunch, late afternoon and evening. Sometimes even when I first wake up she is up, too! I hope that is not an indication of her future sleeping habits! When we went in for our first ultrasound, the techs were amazed at how active she was – I felt a sense of relief when they said that. I still am not showing a whole lot so to know that everything is developing at a good pace was great. We also found out that I have a small cervix, which apparently is quite common but still a little worrisome. The nurse practioner said a short cervix could indicate pre-term labor so I need to watch how active I am and watch out for early contractions, backaches and cramping. I’m thinking this could be hereditary because she asked if my mom delivered any of us early (which she did). I feel so good though it’s hard to take it easy, maybe once I get closer to my due date things will change.

House
The house is slowly coming together – if anyone knows me they know that I have a hard time with change so being in a new place is taking me awhile to adjust.  New sounds, new spaces, new smells…all of that stuff keeps me up at night with anxiety. Even cooking in a different kitchen is weird to me. If you were to ask me a couple of weeks ago if I wanted to move back into our comfy little apartment my answer would’ve been ‘yes’.  I also think that part of it is that arranging and organizing the house is taking a lot longer than I pictured. It takes a lot of time to get things right AND costs a lot of money. Thank goodness Greg and I are blest to have families that have helped us out with some necessary items for the new place.

With everything that is going on in our lives, I am really looking forward to finishing up the house so once winter comes we can really take advantage of the quiet before things will change once spring rolls around. This week my Uncle Bill is coming to lay carpet in the basement, which was once of our big projects! I am excited because once he installs that then we can move our old furniture into the basement and get new stuff for upstairs and unpack our last boxes.

Finally found a color for our bedroom - gray!

Friends
This past weekend we celebrated Matt & Amy’s wedding – it was great! I loved her color scheme and the reception brought back memories of our wedding and how perfect the day was. There’s something about being surrounded by family and family celebrating a new chapter in your life that gives me goose bumps.  This next week is Jake & Jess’ wedding and Joe & Tracy’s wedding – both will be beautiful I’m sure.

In addition to weddings, we have also had friends popping out babies left and right! 5 babies in the past month! It is so much fun to meet all the little newborns. This past week we finally got to meet Hudson Gardner, who was just adorable (and has one of my favorite names ever). He was so relaxed and just loved to look at the lights and stare at Greg. Greg and I both held him for 2 hours! Greg even got to feed and burp him and felt pretty special. 

Yesterday, I got to meet Henry Wagner. I have been anxiously awaiting his arrival. Oh my he was just beautiful and was making the cutest little noises as I held him. I think he looks like a combination of Erika and Steve but of course they change so much. Meeting all of these babies is so much fun but I think the thing that excites me the most is seeing the proud parents and how much deeper of a bond they have. I can see it all of their eyes as we talk about their baby and the experiences that come with it. I love seeing all the new aspects of a new little family and I am so thrilled for that to be Greg and I.

21 Weeks Pregnant

Whose nose will baby have?? In the ultrasound, it looked like mine :)

Sara caught the bouquet!

Cutting the cake - which was delicious.

Baby Hudson

Baby Henry


Friday, October 14, 2011

Moving, 18/19 Weeks Pregnant, Etc.

I haven't blogged in awhile because these last couple of weeks have been beyond chaotic. Sooo this is going to be a long post!


On Wednesday, October 5th I had my monthly doctor appointment. The doctor told me that I was 18 weeks - I thought I was 17! My due date is still the same I just must not have been calculating right. The appointment was short and sweet. I got to hear baby's heartbeat again AND we got to schedule our ultrasound for 20 weeks. I am really looking forward to that and seeing how much baby has changed since our first ultrasound at 8 weeks. Doctor predicted a girl so we'll see :)


On Thursday, October 6th Greg and I closed on our first house!!!! As exciting as it was, it was still a bittersweet day. Moving into our new house meant leaving an apartment that we called home for over 2 years. Now I know what you are thinking - it was just an apartment. But in that apartment, Greg proposed to me, we celebrated our first Christmas together, hosted our first family Easter there, we found out I was pregnant there....just lots of good memories. And although we were terribly cramped for space there, we loved our neighbors, the staff, the amenities, the neighborhood....sigh. Obviously it'll be a place that will be greatly missed and never forgotten to us. 


So back to moving day - we finished closing at about 10:00. Greg and I decided to take a load of fragile things over before our friends/family came to help move. It was so strange to see the house completely empty and all ours. We immediately started thinking of different ways to arrange furniture and what elements of the house we wanted to fix up first. By 11:30-12:00, our first set of movers got to the apartment to help us load of the U-Haul. By about 3:00 we were all on our way to move in. Unloading took a lot less time! No one could believe how many boxes of things we had. And honestly I couldn't either. After having some lunch and taking a short break, we were all moved in by 5:00. We are so lucky to have such great family and friends that took time out of their day to help us move. 


The rest of the weekend consisted of lots of unpacking, upkeep and shopping. Our friend, Cole, came over on Friday to help Greg rip up the basement carpet while I began to unload everything. Cole stayed for awhile to help Greg also put together our new desk. I love when Cole comes over because Greg and him act like brothers with their weird jokes and ways they entertain themselves. I'm happy he has a friend like that. We also bought some new bedroom furniture, a new TV and lots of little maintenance things that we didn't need while living in the apartment. Man, the little things sure add up! We had a pleasant surprise on Saturday when our next door neighbors stopped over to introduce themselves and their puppy, Jack. I thought Greg was going to nuts over how cute the dog was - honestly at this point I think he'd take any kind of dog I let him. They were so nice and said they absolutely LOVE the neighborhood, which was so good to hear. 


Once this past Monday rolled around it was back to work and I was actually relieved to focus on something other than unpacking. But this week has been also been busy! I just feel like there aren't enough hours in a day.  This week Greg painted our bedroom, bleached the basement floors, we went to Old Chicago with friends for the Halloween Kick-Off Party and met Ari Wenzlick :)


 Some of our moving crew - the Erica, Ryker & Erika came later to check out the progress :)



Greg and Cole ripping out the carpet - We can't wait to fix up the basement! (And get rid of that weird art design down there) My goal is to have the basement ready for Greg's birthday so that he can watch a football game in the 'man cave' he has talked about since we bought the house.

Trying to pick out a paint color....

Ari Wenzlick - she was just precious.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Cream Cheese Chicken Enchiladas

With all of this packing going on, it's time to treat my husband (and myself!) to a delicious dinner. Enchiladas are one of my favorite things to make, especially when we have cheeses and veggies that need to be used up in the fridge. In this case, I figure the more food I can use up before we move the less we have to pack up...simple math really!




Here's the line-up of ingredients
Please don't mind the mess of packing behind!

My favorite secret to my enchiladas is to use an already cooked rotesserie chicken that your local deli prepares. They are so delicious, moist and affordable. For this recipe I used all the chicken but for some recipes you have leftovers that can be used for dinners/lunches later in the week.

Cream Cheese Chicken Enchiladas
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (or a whole rotesserie chicken in my case)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt & pepper to taste

2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, diced
2 jalepenos, seeded and minced
1 can green chiles, diced
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 (28 ounces) can of green enchilada sauce
6-7 flour tortillas
2 cups pepperjack cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Season chicken breasts with 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, salt & pepper. Place into a baking dish and cook until chicken is no longer pink (approx. 45 minutes). Allow chicken to cool and shred. Set chicken aside. OR you can go the easy route and buy the rotesserie chicken, remove skin and shred with your hands. Add the spices mentioned about and mix around. Sounds a bit easier...just sayin.

Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and cook the onions and jalepenos until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the can of green chiles and then the softened cream cheese. Then mix in 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon of garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon of paprika and 1/2 teaspoon of cumin. Mix in the chicken and remove from heat. Don't skimp out on the spices - without 'em these enchiladas will be bland.

Pour half of the enchilada sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Lay tortillas out onto a work surface and place cream cheese mixture in a line down the center of each tortilla. Sprinkle about one tablespoon of pepperjack cheese on top of the cream cheese mixture. Roll up the tortillas and place in sauce in baking dish. Pour remaining sauce over the enchiladas and top with remaining pepperjack cheese (and any other cheeses you'd like to get rid of out of the fridge).

Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until filling is hot and bubbly.

And here's the final product...


Rich and gooey with a kick!

Now top off your enchilada with some salsa and some sour cream if you are really goin all out! I found this awesome salsa at the grocery store today. It's a local-made one and we are all about supporting local products around here!


16 Weeks Picture

Ok, here's the picture from 16 weeks (well, really, 16.5 weeks). Greg and I have been really bad about taking weekly pictures and I know if I don't get better about doing it I will be kicking myself in the booty later.

After a long day at work, I'm not lookin so hot....



Wednesday, September 28, 2011

16 Weeks

This past Monday marks my 16th week of pregnancy! The goal is to post pictures of my belly here and there but this week has been a little hectic and we haven't had time to take any! Greg is dog-sitting again, which means I don't get to see a lot of him after work...boo.


Time is sure flying by. In just a few weeks I will be halfway done with my first pregnancy. Makes me realize that I really need to savor the days and enjoy every minute of what I'm going through. Hopefully a year from now I can look back at the all the events and emotions going on and remember what it was like.


So this week began a little in frustration. I am now at that point where nothing fits right....and I mean NOTHING. It's too early to tell that I'm showing but if I wear anything too snug it looks as if I have a gut. Everyone said I would get to this point and here I am! And my tummy isn't the only thing that is blossoming....legs, butt and breasts are also growing. I now have only 2 pairs of jeans that actually fit and feel comfortable.


My appetite has also grown tremendously! Every few hours I am hungry! This is how I felt at the beginning of my pregnancy, except now I don't get nauseous if I need to eat. Next week we get to go in and hear baby's heartbeat again..stay tuned!


This week baby is the size of an avocado!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Packin On Up!

Greg and I move into our first house in t-minus 10 days...and the packing has officially begun. When we moved into this apartment two years ago, we barely had anything. Somehow over that time, we've managed to collect a whole bunch of CRAP. My husband is one to keep every single trinket he can get his hands on (which doesn't help our cause). When we were receiving wedding gifts from Pottery Barn, he kept every single little metal key that came on each package. When he gets a letter in the mail, he keeps every single empty envelope, coupon, etc. and piles them in one pile on the kitchen counter. "Organized clutter" is what he calls it...but why he keeps it all is a mystery. Oh the joys of married life :) I keep saying once we get into this house we are both going to get more organized so let's hope that happens.


The apartment in boxes...more to come.

This weekend was also Andrew Ryan's 2nd Birthday Party!  My highschool/college buddy, Sarah Sovereign, and her fiance invited friends and family over to watch Andrew open his gifts and then to watch the Husker game. Although it was a gorgeous evening, this morning I woke up with 56 mosquito bites on my legs (yes, I counted)! Andrew's party was pirate-themed and was absolutely adorable. I may have to copy that idea if we have a little boy :)




Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My Very First Blog!

I am excited to start this blog for many reasons, one of which is to document all of the events and emotions that will take place over time. Since the journal thing didn't work out too well for me, I'm hoping this will! Now on to the good stuff...


This past weekend was packed full of fun! It all started on Friday night - Greg and I drove down to Lincoln to celebrate Kristin's 21st birthday. I cannot believe my sissy bear is 21!!! Seems like only yesterday I was celebrating mine up in Hastings. The whole Richter clan met down in the Haymarket and tried a new restaurant called Brix and Stones Gastropub. It was awesome! Everyone raved about their entrees. My dad wouldn't stop talking about how yummy the Bleu Chips were. For dessert, we tried the donut holes. I have become quite the dessert fiend lately and loved the donuts :) Greg and I then spent the night at my parent's house. We enjoyed catching up and, of course, playing with Charlie!


Pete, Kristin & Mom

Greg & Mom snuggling with Charlie!


Saturday night was our good friends, Jess and Jake's bachelor/bachelorette parties. The guys spent the day down at the Walz' studio playing poker, watching football, drinking and eating. The girls had a great evening out in the Old Market. I wasn't sure how long I'd last being the only sober one but I had a blast! I even danced at the Dubliner and had a shot of cranberry juice while everyone else had actual shots :) The night was a success!

Sexy bride with her new apron!


At the Dubliner...love it!

Then on Sunday I had one of my best friend, Erika's, baby shower! I am so excited to meet Baby Henry and watching her open all of her gifts made it feel like his arrival is right around the corner. We played some fun games and I ALMOST won the yarn-around-the-belly game except Erika's dad beat me - bummer! 


Erika's sister, Crissa, measuring the yarn HA!

Proud Mommy