Friday, January 31, 2014

5 on Friday- Thankful

I had planned on my 5 on Friday post this week being about the top 5 things that happened in January.  Kind of like a little "monthly recap" if you will.  But after this week, I'm changing it up!  The theme of this 5 on Friday is thankful.

First and foremost:  Hadley's tests came back NORMAL!!  Hallelujah!  She was such a little trooper during her VCUG and kidney ultrasound.  She's so brave at only 3 months old. :)  There was *no* reflux in her kidneys and her original diagnosis of "renal pyelectasis" was completely gone.  So we are hoping the UTI she had was just a one-time thing.  (If not, she'll go back for more tests.  Unlikely though, since our test results were what we hoped for!)  All I know is that God is good.  Thankful for that.

I worked one 8 hour shift this week and wouldn't you know Winter Storm Leon happened to make his debut the same day?  I know all the northerners are snickering at our lack of ability to drive in wintry weather (and after the standstill in Atlanta, I can imagine why...) but when you rarely get this type of weather, you aren't prepared to drive in it!  And it doesn't help that they didn't salt our roads before this mess of a storm hit us...even though they knew it was coming.  Anyway, I had to go in at 11p for my shift.  I left my house at 9:45pm.  It took me 1 hour and 20 minutes to get to work, people!  It usually only takes me 25 minutes!  I drove slow and tried to stay away from other cars.  That ice, man, it will get ya!  I will not lie, I prayed the entire way to work and the entire way home.  But, I got home in one piece, and so did my car.  Thankful.

(I was stopped.  Please don't text and drive.  Or take pictures and drive.)

My husband just needs to be recognized.  He has really stepped up since Hadley was born.  A lot of times, Hadley's dinner time coincides with ours and he never hesitates to make dinner while I nurse.  He keeps me laughing.  He gets up in the middle of the night to give our daughter a bottle.  He stays with her in the mornings until I get home from work.  He's a wonderful father.  He picks up the house when I'm too tired.  He will play with her on the weekends and let me get a quick nap.  He's just a wonderful guy and I don't tell him that enough.  I'm so thankful for him!

I love this furry, little boy!  He has gone through quite the transition in the last 3 months.  He no longer gets to sit on my lap 24 hours a day, attention is shared with a new intruder, and his nights are interrupted by fits of crying.  He's had a little bit of a ruff (rough, get it? haha)  transition and we are still working on some things, but he's still my sweet boy.  He loves to sit with me while I nurse and he loves to kiss Hadley's little feet.  He so protective when he hears anything (even a leaf rustling outside!).  He's getting used to her, and at this point, that's all I can ask! I'm so thankful he's learning to be a good big brother.

I'm so glad we've remembered to take so many pictures since Hadley was born.  I love this little girl so much and she changes  It hasn't even been long and my heart already aches for the days when she was so small.  It seems like just yesterday I was in the hospital in complete disbelief that she was finally here.  I love watching her grow and I miss her newborn days, all at the same time.  I am so thankful I have sweet pictures as keepsakes!

What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Best Chicken Salad You've Ever Had.

A couple weeks ago I posted a picture of some delicious chicken salad I made for lunch that week.  I thought I'd share the recipe so everyone can enjoy the goodness that is "Aunt Diane's Chicken Salad."  (Although it's come to my attention that the recipe actually came from a close family friend, Mrs. Wanda.  So it will heretofore be named Aunt Diane's-slash-Mrs. Wanda's Chicken Salad."  Or you can just call it "mouthful of goodness."  Whichever you choose.)  Also, make sure you see the recommendations at the bottom before trying!  And if you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask!

You'll Need:
3-4 chicken breasts (I used 3)
chopped pecan halves (I used pecan pieces)
miracle whip
salt and pepper

(Not pictured: chicken.  Because it was still raw.  Gross.)

Step One:
Boil the chicken for 45 minutes.  Once it has cooled, cut the chicken into small cubes and place in bowl.

Step Two:
Wash the celery and chop it up!  I use small pyrex ramekins to "measure" my stuff so it's not an actual measurement.  But if I did measure it out, it would be about 3/4 cup.

Step Three:
Measure out 3/4 cup pecan halves.  There should be equal parts celery and pecan halves.  So if you add more celery, add more pecans!

(These are the pyrex ramekins I use.  I hope you can kind of see the size I'm talking about.)

Step Four:
Pour ingredients into bowl with chicken.  I add the same amount of craisins as celery and pecans.  It ends up being a little less than the whole bag.

Step Five:
Make the sauce.  Two serving-spoon (heaping spoonfuls) sizes of miracle whip.  Add honey on top of the miracle whip.  Make sure the honey covers the miracle whip. I always add a little extra honey.  As you can see here. Delicious.

Step Six:
Add mixture to chicken salad and toss it all together!  Add salt and pepper to taste.

I've made this quite a few times, so I know how my husband and I like it.  These are just a few things I've learned when making this...

1. It usually takes 3 celery stalks to get the amount we like.

2. I've started using pecan pieces instead of halves (Diamond brand has both pieces and halves.)  I like the little pieces because I think it adds more crunch overall.  But if you want to use halves, then do!

3. I don't normally like miracle whip more than regular mayonnaise.  But in this recipe I'd definitely recommend miracle whip over mayo.  Again, just my opinion, so use regular mayo if you want!

4. As far as the sauce goes, start with a little sauce and add more if you need to.  It can get soggy really fast!  It's always easy to add more sauce if you need to, but if you add too much, it's too late!

5. More honey is never a bad thing.

6. I usually just add pepper, no salt.

If you try it, let me know how you like it!! 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

My Beauty Must-Haves

I am not one of these people who stays up-to-date on fashion trends, make-up, clothes, etc.  And even if I did, I have no idea how to put anything together!  Just walking by Sephora is enough to cause a slight panic attack.  I completely admire the people who just instinctively know what colors, layers, and pieces go well together and can do a smokey eye and not look like they've gotten punched!  

I would probably describe my style as: simple.  I wear cardigans and camis.  If I'm feeling extra brave that day, I may even try to tackle a scarf. (But don't ask me about different ways to wear a scarf.  I know one way. La-dee-dah.)  That is the extent of my "layering" ability. :)

Given that I don't know much about fashion, I keep my make-up to a minimum.  I like a light, airy feel and I don't like anything that looks caked on.  I'm hopeful that there are more people out there like me, haha!  But here are my top products that I use on a regular basis.

1. My skin is crazy.  It's both oily and dry at the same time.  Don't ask me how this is possible because I just don't know.  I know I need a moisturizer, but it seems like anytime I use one, it causes me to break out.  Because it either makes my skin too oily, or so dry my body tries to overcompensate for the dryness and...causes me to break out!  My mom actually found this product for me.  It's extremely light when it goes on and isn't oily at all.  They have one with SPF in it that I've tried, but I found it smells like sunscreen and makes my face feel oily.  So I stick with the non-SPF kind.

2. I was a little behind on this trend!  But I love the Naked palette.  I tend to stick with neutral colors for eye shadow and this has pretty much what I look for.  I love the way it goes on and there is just enough "shimmer" for me that I don't feel like it's overload on my face.  I haven't gotten up the courage to buy the Naked 3 palette, but I'm getting closer to wanting it!

3. I've used this mascara for years now.  I buy mine in the brown-black color with the straight wand.  I've tried the curved wand and it does okay, but again....simple is the way to go for me.  I don't like for my eyelashes to "clump" together and I've always been happy with the results I've gotten with this mascara.  

4. For some reason, I love a packed powder better than one that isn't.  This one is perfect.  It comes with a foam applicator, but I like to use a powder brush.  I seem to be able to get it to go on more even with a brush. And I haven't seemed to have any residue on my shirts (like around my collar). this foundation.  I hate foundations that feel heavy, leave streaks, and make me look like I have globs of make-up on.  This is perfect.  It feels so light and look natural on my skin.  Clinique stopped making the other foundation I used and this was their replacement.  I was wary at first because it has sunscreen in it, and hello, that stuff makes me break out.  (see above.)  But I gave it a try and I haven't gone back.  I can't even tell it has sunscreen.  So that's a bonus.

6. I think this product is why I love the Naked palette so much.  I put this base on before I apply any eye shadow and I don't have to reapply anything  And that's no lie.  Like I said, I'm not a pro at this stuff, but I'm thinking that's pretty good, right?  On the days I don't wear make-up, I'll still put this on my eye-lids, top off with my regular packed powder and it looks like flawless-skin-without-make-up.  Score.

These aren't super duper, crazy products.  But they work for what I need and I'm happy with them.  I'm always up for learning/using new products, though, so what are your favorites that I need to try?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Nap Time!

Hadley is down for her morning nap, so I thought I'd try to whip up a quick post!  Just some random things today.

-There is a Coach sale on the Coach Factory website today and I ordered a new wallet!  The one I have now is about 5 years old and came from Target.  So I'd say it was about time for a new one. :)

I like that it zips up and has multiple card slots.  And I love the color!  It's so bright and cheerful!

-We are laying pretty low around here the rest of winter.  I don't know about where you live, but the flu is rampant here!  We went to a birthday party Saturday and 2 people who were there now have the flu.  I'm just praying we don't get that in our house!  3 months old is not old enough to deal with a sickness as bad as the flu has been this year!  And as a nurse, I have to get my plug in:  Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands!  And if you do happen to get sick, don't go out in public!!  It irritates me to no end when people are visibly sick out in public.  I don't want your illness, thanks!

-Hadley's VCUG and U/S are tomorrow.  I work tonight from 11-7 and her tests are tomorrow at 12:30 pm, so tomorrow is going to be a long day.  We should have some answers by Friday afternoon.  Hopefully we won't need a plan, but if we do, we will be on our way to getting one set up.

-Since Hadley has been born, this guy hasn't gotten much love on the blog.  He was trying to send some e-mails to his puppy friends.  You can e-mail him at ;)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Hadley 3 Months


   You are 3 months old today!  You are the most precious thing in the world.  You are such a happy girl!  The only time you really cry is when you are hungry or bored.  And you give the biggest, happiest smiles that just melt your mommy's heart.

-You weigh 11 lbs. 10 oz.
- You are 22 inches long (based on mommy's didn't have a wellness check up this month!)
-You are still in size 1 diapers (although you sure can blow those babies out!  I am becoming a pro at getting poop out of your outfits!  We go through at least one outfit change a day, if not more!  And you get sooo proud of yourself!)
-You wear mostly 3 month outfits, but your 0-3 month outfits still fit, so you wear those on occasion.  You are just getting so big!
- You smile all the time now!  The big, toothless grins are the absolute best.  You haven't started giggling yet, but I know I will just die when you do!
-You are also becoming a talker!  You are trying to copy certain sounds, mostly "Ooooh".  It's so fun to watch you learn!
-You discovered your hands!  If your paci isn't in your mouth, one of your hands is.

- You grabbed a toy for the first time the other day!  You have a little pink ball that you love.  You were in your high chair, it was right in front of you, and you reached for it and just picked it up!  (Now you like to practice taking your paci out of your mouth and put it back in!)
- You still haven't rolled over yet, but you are getting so close!
- You sleep 5-6 hours at night and still take multiple naps during the day, usually about an hour- an hour and a half with one long nap (about 3 hours) in afternoon.
-You had your first illness (UTI), first antibiotic, and first yeast rash on your bottom.
-You nurse during the day and take one bottle for your "middle of the night" feeding.  You've been taking right at 4 oz. but you took 5 oz. for the first time last night!
-You are still on zantac for your reflux.
-We are working on "un-swaddling" you at night.
-You sleep about 6-7 hours at night now.  You were sleeping from 11-5, but you have decided 10-4 sounds better, so that's where we are now.  6 hours isn't too shabby!

- Being naked!  A naked baby is a happy baby in your book!
- Bath time.  You have started kicking and flapping your arms in the bath and creating big splashes.  You think it is the coolest thing.
- Your pink ball and toys that make music.  We have started helping you push buttons on your toys that make music and you try so hard to do it by yourself!
-Standing up with help.  Sitting down is for the birds!
-TV.  You are only 3 months old and I'm already having to regulate your tv habit. ;)
-Your wubbanub.  You love to hold it.

-Being hungry.  If you don't get fed the minute you decide you're ready to eat, you scream like your fat rolls are starving.
-Tummy time, although this is getting better.
-Being still.  Sometimes you just want to be walked around and talked to.

There really isn't much you don't like right now, which I am thankful for.  You change everyday and I always look forward to seeing your smiling face in the mornings.  I can't believe you are 3 months old.  Wasn't I just finding out I was going to have you?  In my wildest dreams, I never could have imagined how much you would change my life.  I love you, sweet girl!

Saturday, January 18, 2014


Y'all, I am so upset! I had about 4 comments from my 5 on Friday post that I accidentally deleted.  I feel so bad because I try to respond to everyone's comments and I didn't have my comments set up to go to my e-mail.  Because of that, there isn't any way for me to retrieve them (that I know of...).  So if you were one of those people, PLEASE accept my apology!  I feel so bad about it!  I really enjoy talking with and getting to know you guys! :)

Friday, January 17, 2014

5 on Friday-Weekly Review

Finally, it's Friday!  I know for you folks that work everyday, this is a long-awaited day each week for you.  As for me, it's the long-awaited day that daddy is home for a few days and I can actually get some work done around the house! (Don't get me wrong, I love playing on the floor all day with this girl! Although it looks like we are going to have to have a serious conversation about flashing your undies in pictures...)

Without further ado, here is my 5 on Friday!

I've already posted about it this week (here and here), but I went back to work!  I missed my girl immensely, but it was good to see my work buddies again.  I was wiped the day after I worked.  I tried to sleep when Hadley slept, but you know...housework doesn't do itself!  I slept good Wednesday night!

Literally everyone we know offered to make/bring us dinner when we had Hadley.  It was fantastic.  We really had our fill of lasagna... ;)  Our wonderful neighbors gave us a gift and in the card they wrote their number down and said, "call us when you want us to bring you dinner!"  Well, we cashed that dinner in this week!  I figured I would be tired after working and having to stay up with Hadley, so dinner was served Wednesday night.   And better?  We got to choose!  (From a list...)  We chose chicken florentine, brown rice, and salad.  Yum.  Let me say it again.  Yum.  This may be my go-to for taking dinners to people now.  We got an added bonus of lemon pound cake for dessert. (I forgot to take a picture, so ours looked a little different than this one.)

While we are on the topic of food, I made my Aunt Diane's yummy chicken salad recipe to snack on for lunch this week.  This is the best chicken salad I've ever had (and I'm pretty picky about chicken salads...).  It's so good that I have to space out when I plan to make it because I would make it and eat it every week if I could.  I eat it straight out of the bowl.

We had been looking for a kitchen table and a few weeks ago David found one on Craigslist.  David will send me e-mail after e-mail full of things from Craigslist and I usually nix them all.  I have very specific things I like so most of them fall into the "ugly" pile.  But this table is just what I had in mind.  It was a good price so we snatched it up.  When he got the table home and brought it in, it looked perfect in the spot we wanted it for.  Except for one thing.  The chair cushions were bright pink velvet.  Bright pink velvet, people!  I don't know it what universe the previous owners thought that was a good choice, but we had to remedy that.  We recovered the chairs this week and they look beautiful.  I'm super happy with how they turned out!

My grandparents are coming today!  Hadley's great-grandparents are coming today!  These two just can't get enough time with their first (only for now) great-grandchild.  They haven't seen her since Christmas (a whole 3 weeks, gasp!) and she's changed so much since then so I know they are eager to see her.  She interacts a whole lot more now, so it should be a fun visit! :)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Well, friends, I made it!  I know you were all waiting with bated breath to hear if I survived my first night back at work...ha!  (Please just appease me!)

I took some of these bad boys in as a peace offering for being out the last 2 1/2 months.  One thing to know about nurses--they loves treats.  Never forget that.

I held my girl for about 2 hours before I had to leave.  She slept the whole time, which was fine by me!  I was hoping I'd be able to get out the door before she woke up.  For some reason I thought it would be easier if she didn't see me leave.  I didn't want her to have thoughts like "where is my mommy going? Is she ever coming back?  Has she left me forever?"  Because I'm fully aware that 3 month olds have the capacity to think like that.

But as luck would have it, the minute I was walking out the door, the little booger woke up.  I hugged her and kissed her, walked out the door...walked back in the door, hugged her and kissed her again...walked out the door...and came back for another round.  She looked at me like I was crazy.

It was nice to see my friends and even nicer to only work 8 hours instead of 12!  Since I work in the NICU, we have pumps galore.  Every few hours I'd sit myself in the lactation room, watch a little tv, and pump away.  I did, however, spill my milk all over myself which was great and I had a super fun stain on my pants the rest of the night.  That's probably too much information for y'all but I'm a sleep-deprived momma over here and under sharing information is out the window at this point.

She was fast asleep when I got home this morning, so I got about 2 hours of sleep before this sweetie woke up.  This was her face when she saw me!  I die over how cute her little "I just woke up" face is, and I think she was happy to see me!

Anyway, my friend Holly and I were talking (read: dying) over the latest episode of Downton Abbey and someone chimed in about watching the whole season now online.  I'm not sure I want to do that,  I think I have a sick fascination with dragging out the drama Downton always seems to bring to the table.  I pretty much have to pick my jaw up off the floor after each episode.  But back to the point, in case there are any of you out there who can't stand to wait to find out what happens, here is a website that has all of season 4 posted and you can watch. RIGHT. NOW.

I think she may have season 3 on there as well.  Happy Wednesday!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Back to the Grind

Tomorrow night,  I go back to work.  For the last 11 1/2 months, I have been with this baby every. single. night.  (Yes, I'm including my time when she was in my belly.  At that point, I could still take her to work with me, haha!)

I'm only working for an 8 hour shift, but I know it's going to be the longest 8 hours of my life.  I know she will be in good hands, but they won't be mine.  I'm very thankful for a wonderful husband who is giving me the opportunity to go PRN instead of staying full-time.  I will get to spend more time raising my girl and less time away from her.  I'm also thankful for a job I love to do and great friends to work alongside.

I know I'll survive (just call me Drama Queen!) but I can't wait to get home Wednesday morning and see this smiling face! :)

In other news, Hadley's U/S and VCUG have been scheduled for next Thursday (Jan. 23).  I'm trying not to worry about it.  What will be, will be, but it's hard to just let go.  I want to control everything and the fact that I can't control this of all things, is driving me crazy.

It's a quick post today, Hadley and I are off to Target to pick up a prescription for her bottom....due to her other prescription.  Ahh, girl can't catch a break! :)

Happy Monday!

Friday, January 10, 2014

5 on Friday

This is my second week of doing 5 on Friday.  I like using it to remember the things I haven't blogged about that happened during my week.  For some reason (not naming any names...Hadley...) I don't have all the time in the world to blog about everything!

One. Unless you've been living under a rock (and that would be a really cold rock), you've probably heard about "the vortex" that had a large portion of the states living with below freezing temps.  I'm pretty sure I read at last 100 Facebook statuses about it--complete with accompanying iPhone weather pictures to boot.  Considering I haven't been in 9 degree weather before, I jumped on that bandwagon, too.

*Yes, that is me sans make-up in a bathrobe.  I have no shame.  It was 9 degrees outside, the lowest it had been, and I had to RUSH outside to snap a pic before it warmed up to whopping double digits again...

Two. Downton Abbey is back!  (Again with the rock...surely you've heard about this, too!) I spent the weekend re-watching Season 3 in preparation for Season 4 Sunday night.  And Hadley prepped by having Mommy read her "Mouseton Abbey".  She was quite concerned that the Great Big Cheesy Diamond went missing before Cheesmas.  Even better?  The Husband is watching with me.  Now that's a good man. :)  I'm pretty sure he's a closet DA fan...

Three. I saw this cute little project on Pinterest and had to try it out.  I wanted to remember Hadley's sweet little feet because she's growing way too fast.  I had some extra square tiles from some other projects and just used that with acrylic paint.  I sprayed clear polyurethane over it for a shiny finish.  It did not work like I wanted it to.  I don't know that I'd call it a Pinterest Fail per se, but it's definitely not a Pinterest win.  I'd say it's more or less a Pinterest "ehh".  Whatever, her feet are cute. (In hindsight, I would have gotten better paint brushes, waited until Hadley was a little more sleepy to do her feet, and used a bigger tile.  I think the square was just too small.)


Four. Hadley has reflux.  She's on zantac for it, so she no longer screams the entire day (bless it!) but we still go through plenty burp cloths, bibs, outfits, etc.  Now that we are past football season (another mom fail), I finally sat down and made her a Clemson burp cloth!  I got some orange hand towels from my mother-in-law for Christmas and decided to just use those.  One embroidered purple paw and a cute font name later, Hadley's burp cloth was born.  I think she likes it!

Five. Have you seen this app?  I was looking for a good phone devotional, something that would give me a good bible verse to mull over while I drink my coffee in the morning.  I think I found it.  The bible verse is presented on a different background each day and you can save it to use as wallpaper, share it on IG, Twitter, FB.... and there is a great devotional to go along with the verse.  Short but thought provoking.  So far, they are really speaking to me.  (Although, the irony didn't escape me that the app says it's "free" and when you actually get into it, it's just a free 31 day trial and you have to pay for the whole app....and the day 2 devotional was about how our culture is wary of descriptions of things that are "free" because there is usually a catch.  Like it's only free for 31 days but we don't tell you that when you download our app...)  Either way, I've enjoyed adding this to my daily walk!

Whew, what a week.  Life is so good right now.  So good. :)