Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

I am clearly having trouble making time for blogging, so I'm going to do another Ten on Tuesday...

1. What is your dream vacation?
Easy. As much as I'd love a 10-day or longer cruise, I'd be hard-pressed to go on one over this: a couple of weeks in this villa on Turks & Caicos.
2. What has been your favorite trip so far in your life?
That's a tough one. Probably all-time favorite was my trip to Ireland, Scotland, and England when I was 16. It was led by our history teacher, but not school-sponsored...so we got to do a lot of fun things we might not have gotten to otherwise, like (close your eyes, mom): drink Guinness at the brewery in Dublin, have an Irish coffee at a quaint cafe, and get rowdy in a Killarney pub.
3. If you and one of your best friends could go anywhere in the world for one week, where would it be and why?
I'd go with Aaron, of course, but for only one week? Disney World in the off-season so it's not too busy. If we had more than one week, we'd go to Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji!
4. Have you ever booked a trip using an online deal? How did it go?
Oh yeah--I've booked every single one of our cruises (sans our honeymoon since Aaron's parents booked it) with online travel agents, and it's always gone perfectly.
5. What’s your favorite thing to do while you’re on vacation?
Laying in the sun with a cold drink in my hand. Nothing better.
6. Have you ever missed an opportunity to take a trip that you regret?
I don't think so? I mean, Aaron travels a lot for school/work, and I could always tag along, but the most exciting place I think he's ever been is San Francisco...and as much fun as that would be, I don't really regret it or consider it a missed opportunity.
7. You travel far away from home and get stranded with no way to buy anything, what’s the one thing you can’t live without?
8. What’s one of your favorite traveling memories?
Being the star of the piano bar on the Carnival Inspiration (ha, not sure if that's a good thing!); seeing whales in Alaska with Aaron; relaxing at a beach-side spa on Eagle Beach in Aruba with Liz; seeing the sunrise over the Atlantic as our plane landed in Shannon, Ireland; whitewater rafting in Costa Rica with my mom; seeing my grandma's sheer delight at being on her first cruise; snorkeling for the first time in Cabo. I can't pick just one!
9. All included resort or backpacking? Why?
Oh, what a funny question! Why? Because this is a perpetual issue with Aaron and I! Not that we go on vacations that often, but we're always kind of dreaming and halfway planning something...and I, of course, go for the 5-star beach resort with a jacuzzi tub en suite, that kind of thing. Aaron, naturally, would love to backpack someplace remote and sleep on the ground for a week and be one with nature, all that. (Have you seen the movie 127 Hours? Yeah, that would so be Aaron, although he assures me he'd never be in that situation, because he'd at least tell someone where he was going!) Anyway, I'm willing to compromise and go someplace like Costa Rica, where there's outdoorsy stuff AND luxury resorts, but we'll see...we had planned to do an 11-day Southern Caribbean cruise last fall (with lots of hiking and exploring for Aaron in all the port stops), but then we found out we were expecting our little bundle of joy, so that got canceled. I think we're long overdue for a vacation together!
10. Are you more of a lie on the beach kind of person on vacation, or do you prefer to see the sights?

Monday, September 19, 2011

6 months!

Our little (not-so-little!) Zoey Mae turns 6 months old today! I know I sound like a broken record, but WHERE has the time gone??? It seems like just yesterday I was having my baby shower at work, and anticipating her arrival. I had no idea what an adventure parenting would turn out to be, but I wouldn't trade a second of it for any other life.

I know I'm really behind in posting pictures (we're also behind in taking some), but Aaron has promised me a 6-month photo shoot for Miss Z very soon, so I hope to have lots of pics to share when we finish that.

In other updates...we are finally cloth diapering 99% of the time, and LOVING it! It took a couple of months for me to get comfortable and find a system I liked using, but now that I have, I'm so glad we're doing it. The vast majority of our stash is made up of GroVia AI2s. We also have five TotsBots Easy Fit AIOs that are actually my favorites, but they're spendy and you can't replace the liner. Finally, we have three FuzziBunz (two size smalls and one OS) that were gifts or freebies, and that rounds out our stash. I have no leaking problems, and cloth contains the poop-splosions so much better than any 'sposie! The laundry hasn't been half bad, either...unless your well-meaning husband happens to dry your load of diapers with not one, but two chemical-laden dryer sheets. Eeeeeek! (For those who don't know, dryer sheets contain wax, which coats the diapers and causes them to repel liquids, instead of absorb. Not good!) So, I've started the stripping process. Hopefully they'll come clean without too much hassle, and no harm, no foul!

Zoey is reportedly the "best eater" at daycare (that's my girl! haha), and she loooooves her purees. Let's see if I can list everything she's had so far: oatmeal, bananas, sweet potatoes, peas, carrots, peaches, mangoes, green beans, pineapple, pears, apples, squash, blueberries, corn, and broccoli. I *think* that's it, plus she's gnawed on some watermelon, cantaloupe, celery, spinach leaves, and tried a couple of spinach-apple baby puffs. Whew! Oh, and she can drink water from a sippy cup like a big girl, when she's in the mood!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Riddle me this...

Why is it that Zoey is pretty solidly in 6-9 month clothing all around, but when I put her in a pair of 3-6 month jeans this morning (yay cool weather!), they nearly fell off her of her, they're so big?? Darn vanity sizing for babies. :-)

Oh, and I forgot the biggest update of all on our last post: we have officially retired the infant seat, and Zoey is now full-time in her Britax Boulevard! She loves it, and I love not lugging around the bulky carrier anymore. This also means that she now sits in the shopping cart like a big girl, and has even sat in a few high chairs at restaurants. *sigh* What happened to my little newborn??

And a random note to any expecting parents out there: Do as  I say, and not as I do. We bought an infant carrier that goes all the way to 32 pounds, thinking "wow, we can use this for at least a year!" Sure, Zoey isn't anywhere NEAR outgrowing the seat, but trust me when I say you will not want to haul that thing around anymore once your little one gets to be about 16-17 pounds. Holy macaroni. Plus, the Britax is sooooo much more padded and comfy for her, and she seems to enjoy riding in the car so much more now!

Friday, September 9, 2011

A few camping pictures...

Our little monster in her bear hat. (Incidentally, that hat was the first thing I purchased after the ultrasound when we found out we were expecting a GIRL!)

Mommy and Zoey bright and early in the morning...

Breakfast time! No, she is not eating Coldstone hot cocoa (which isn't that great, for the record). She's enjoying her feast of Gerber Apple-Cinnamon oatmeal.

All tuckered out after a stroll!

Chillin' in the camp chair. :-)

The boonies of western North Dakota. I could live here.

RuRu dominated.
Near our campsite at sunset.
Another sunset pic near camp.
The Little Missouri River that flows right through our campground.
The gopher snake I found. Once we determined he/she was harmless, it was picture time!

The other zoo animal. :-)
Bonus picture: Not from camping, but our little chunks sleeping about a month ago. Aaron just got this one off the camera.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Life has just been SO busy and hectic lately, that my poor little blog has been neglected!

Let's see, what's new with us these days...

Zoey has started daycare and it's really working out well. She made the transition with practically no issues, and we just love Miss Theresa. She now sits more than anything, and if you raise her up so she can stand, she doesn't want to stand still anymore! The girl wants to walk! I can't believe it - she knows to put one foot in front of the other. Once her strength and balance catch up with her little mind and willpower, I know she'll be off to a running start!

We took Zoey on her first camping trip (pics to come if Aaron will ever upload them off his memory card!) to Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota. I always forget just how beautiful it is out there, and I'm amazed each time we go. I truly think I could live in the boonies in that area, if I didn't have to commute to work or anything like that. We even had a little side adventure, where we hunted for ice caves without a good map to point us where they were. We weren't successful, but we still got to see a lot of cool stuff, including taking the Subaru off-road, and did eventually procure a map for the next time we go.

I made my debut as the Diet Writer at Once a Month Mom! My first recipe and my introduction post went up yesterday; there will be plenty more to come. If you haven't subscribed to the RSS feed, then you better go ahead and get on that! :-)

I joined Weight Watchers @ Work. My first official meeting was yesterday, and I'm excited to have a program and support group for my own weight loss journey. I feel like I have a pretty good handle on the eating part, especially doing once-a-month cooking, but now I just need to find a way to fit working out into my routine. I'm also doing a "Biggest Loser"-type of contest with some girls from a message board I'm on. We're having a real-life get-together in April (in Gatlinburg, Tennessee--yay!), and not only am I excited to meet these awesome women in person, but I'm also excited to hopefully be considerably lighter and have a chance at winning the competition, which will conclude in Tennessee!

I started back to grad school! I can't remember if I mentioned this on here or not, and I'm too lazy to go back and read, but nonetheless...I am taking a class this semester that meets on Monday nights, and I will hopefully complete my internship requirements this semester and advance to candidacy. That means that next semester, all I have to do is take an Educational Psych class and work on my scholarly project (in lieu of a thesis). Assuming all goes well and falls into place, I'll graduate next May, alongside Aaron's sister, who will be getting her bachelor's degree.