Come, Momma


Our Kids Are On a Journey and They Want Us to Come With Them. 

The daily “momma grind” puts me on auto pilot some days. That’s how I stay focused enough to get us out the door on time every school day morning. Routine is important, but sometimes it blocks us from seeing things outside the proverbial “box” that our routine has put us in. 

My list of to-dos rattles off in my head as I try to get a toddler and infant ready to get in the car first thing in the morning. I can only pray that my 2-month-old sleeps long enough for me to get dressed and get my toddler sitting down for a quick breakfast. It’s a constant pressure, a drive, to get going, get it done, get there. 

I have to make myself stop, think, and listen. 

We are mommas. We are so loved by our littles. So, I have to remind myself when my 4-year-old takes my hand and says, “come,” it is so much more important than pretty much anything else I have on my to do list (obvious exceptions apply. Like going to the bathroom, etc.). It really is important most of the time to go see what he wants to show me. I have to remind myself of that. 

Today, Mother’s Day, my 4-year-old took my hand and my husband’s hand (I was holding the 2-month-old) to the big bed and wanted us all to get in it. We all climbed in together. A family. 

Because we decided to let him take our hands and lead us a little on his journey rather than our own, we got memorable family snuggle time. 

As I celebrate the joy of motherhood today, I also want to remember the joy and fleeting time that is childhood. My kids will not always want to hold my hand. My kids won’t always need family snuggles. 

I love my children. I love being momma. I just need to remind myself to stop and help them on their joyful journey. 

The Perfect Stay-at-Home Mom

Ah, the perfect stay-at-home mom. The fictional woman whom we all hold ourselves up to as the standard of motherhood. The mom who has perfectly dressed kids, a clean house and managed to apply mascara. The embodiment of a completely attainable dream, right? *insert sarcasm*

We’re moms at home all day, we should be able to be the perfect moms, right? Well, that’s kinda what I thought for a while.

I thought that I should be able to do it ALL if I could just be home with my kids.

When I was working outside the home, I would day-dream, surely I would be able to (insert fantasy SAHM scenario) if I were home all day!

Boy, was I delusional.
I’ve worked either part or full-time since my now three-year-old was born (with a brief stint as a work from home paralegal somewhere in there). Through it all, I always wanted to be a SAHM (Stay-At-Home-Mom). I finally got to be SAHM with my second baby boy thanks to the generosity and sacrifice of my long-suffering husband to whom I will be forever grateful.
I have been home two months with my newborn baby. And I love it! Truly and completely. It is absolutely my calling and vocation. But… it’s not at all how I pictured SAHM life would go for me.

As a newly SAHM (Stay-At-Home-Mom) and aspiring WAHM (Work-At-Home-Mom) romance writer, I’m still figuring things out. Like how to open a bottle of water with one hand while breastfeeding. Or how to get the infant car seat straps to tighten without trying it five million times (!!!!!). However, to my credit, I have mastered the 6 minute shower.

Some days I feel like I have it all together. Other days, I feel exhausted and behind. And, despite the undeniably challenging circumstances surrounding being a SAHM mom to an infant and a toddler (including a long stint of c-section recovery), I’m actually surprised at myself when I feel exhausted by my efforts. I’ll even feel guilty for being exhausted. Being at home is supposed to be easy, right?

There is no doubt that I am happier now than I have ever been before. And I’m certainly happier now that I’m not working full-time and leaving my babies with someone else, regardless of how caring the “someone else” is. A couple years back, my loving mother-in-law kept my first baby for me when I had to go back to work. She’s amazing, but that didn’t stop the tears and panic attacks I experienced every work day by leaving my baby for a desk job.

Even though I now have my “dream job” of being SAHM (along with writing my romance novels) there are challenges that I did not fully anticipate in full-time-mommy land.

I did NOT anticipate what I would expect of myself versus what I could feasibly do.

I Expected to Keep a Perfect House

The table was going to be set every night with a home cooked meal and a table cloth. My floors would be spotless and the toys would be put away.

Yeah right.

Fast forward to reality…forget a table cloth and insert leftovers for dinner. I’m lucky enough that my husband loves to cook. But, we can’t even eat at the table most nights because my half-folded mountain of laundry is piled on it!

I Expected My Parenting to be Perfect

My kids would sit quietly on the couch and listen as I read Watership Down from a pristine library book. Then we would all go outside where they would help me plant my seasonal garden. My baby would coo happily at me from his place in my hip and stylish baby-wearing wrap.
Newsflash!

I’m way too exhausted to fight for a lengthy story time. My infant is crying and my three-year-old kid keeps turning the pages on the picture book I’m trying to read to him. I can’t get out the two whole sentences printed on each page before he turns each page on me. I’m too tired from being awake every thirty minutes the night before with a nursing infant to fight him, but I give it a try. Then, the baby poops. While I change him my toddler wanders off having listened to what amounts to about twelve words of book.

And a keeping a garden? *phbtt*

I can’t keep one pot of flowers from dying much less a garden of vegetables.

I Expected Myself to Have Perfect Time Management

I would be up and ready to go promptly at 6am and get 500 words of writing in before my baby woke to quietly breastfeed as we stared lovingly into each other’s eyes.

Hola, chica!

6am was when I finally got the baby to go back to sleep. No way was I dragging my sorry butt out of bed. I could make to my 8am appointment it if I slept til 7…right? *snore*

I Expected to be Perfectly Organized 
I thought I could leave paperwork behind at my desk job.

Nope!!!

I’ve done so much paperwork every day for my kids in addition to regular bill paying, taxes and insurance junk that I’m starting to wonder if I’m their mother or their secretary! I have a huge pile of unsorted various papers piled in boxes waiting to be filed and my desk is always covered with papers associated with a mile long to-do list.

WAHM/SAHM life is not easy. It can seem like you’re spinning your wheels or even spinning out of control.

In the middle of the craziness while listening to both kids screaming at once, I took a breath and remembered something crucial.

Even on the hard days, being a WAHM/SAHM allows me to be there for my kids and my family when they need me most. And I deeply appreciate this gift…

This SAHM/WAHM gig may not be easy, it may be 24/7, and it’s certainly not something I will ever achieve perfection with, but I wouldn’t trade with anyone.

It’s not about perfection. It’s about being there for the people you love the most. 

Have you ever felt overwhelmed as a SAHM? Comment below…

Making Time to be a Writer When You are a Parent to Little Kids:

You CAN be a Parent and a Writer!

It’s REALLY hard…but you have to ask yourself, what do you really want?

Being a writer has been my dream since I was a little kid. I want to use writing as a way to make income from home as a WAHM. 

  • What do you want?

If you DON’T want to be a writer, then do yourself a favor; don’t do it! There are lots of ways to make an income from home. INSTEAD: Find something that will make your heart sing. That’s where you belong. ❤️

But if you DO want to be a writer and you have small kids, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself:

How to Make Time to Write When You Have Small Kids graphic3

  • What Are Your Priorities?

Crystal Paine in a interview with Jeff Goins on his podcast, My Portfolio Life With Jeff Goins said,

“I think you make time for what is a priority to you, and if it’s not a priority, you make an excuse.”

This speaks to me about how I make time for my writing. If you don’t really want to do it, you’ll find some way not to. Sure, you’ll have off-days where you get nothing done. That’s the nature of parenthood. That’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about consistently carving out time for yourself to do what you know you need to do despite obstacles.

  • What Will I use to Write With?

As moms/parents, we rarely have a hands-free moment. If you want to be a writer, you need to find a way to get your ideas down on-the-go.

I use a smart phone. I’m using a smart phone this very second to type out this blog post. It’s 3:30am and I have a sleepy nursing baby in my lap who cries the instant I set him down. But with a smart phone, I can use this down-time to write. If you can text, you can write. E.L. James wrote much of Fifty Shades of Grey on her blackberry!

There are a few essential Apps I use to write on my iPhone, but it’s whatever works for you. You can even use your email feature or the “notes” app that comes with the phone. The idea is that you should be able to transfer your writing to a computer.

If you don’t have a smart phone, don’t despair! If you still want to write on a one-handed apple device, the old iPod touch models and even just an iPhone that’s not connected to a phone service (wifi is helpful) would be excellent tools. I saw one offered for as low as $50 used and refurbished on Amazon.com.

If you’re not a smartphone user, consider a notebook and pen that can fit in your pocket. The downside is it requires two hands for these tools. If you can do a vocal recording to transcribe, a mini recorder might be best for you. You can also do vocal recordings and even voice-to-text on an iPhone. That way you can still be one-handed.

  • How Can I Create More Time?

Streamline

Writing takes up a lot of time. Sure, you can get a lot done if you do a little at a time, but there is something to be said for MAKING a dedicated chunk of time. That chunk could be as small as ten minutes as long as you have focus. But how will you come up with that time? Streamline!

Is there a chore that could be delegated to your spouse/significant other?

Can you pre-make freezer meals in batches to give you an hour or two of free time on other nights?

Can you turn of the television and give yourself that time?

A great resource for mommas trying to find time is The Fringe Hours. I loved this book.

Budget Your Time

You can start by budgeting your resources to make sure you don’t over-commit. Make a list of only a few things. Only what you can accomplish in one day. I have a list nowadays if about 3 items. Sometimes I get more done and that’s great. But I’m not overwhelmed with a huge list.

A great resource for this is Say Goodbye to Survival Mode.

Set Priorities

Everyone only has so much time and energy. Don’t be afraid to say, “No!” Here are some tips by Crystal Paine on how to say no in a productive way.

Think About money

Also, be sure to budget finances. That way if you need new writing software or want to purchase a domain name for your blog, you will know if you can afford it. A great resource for financial budgeting is Dave Ramsey. He changed my life with the audio cd set, Financial Peace University.

It’s very hard to concentrate on writing if you’re not sure if your rent check is going to bounce! Do yourself a favor and use a budget.
My family uses an easy and free app/website by Dave Ramsey www.everydollar.com. 

Another great resource is The Money Saving Mom’s Budget.

  • Decide

Decide that it is a priority to be a writer, use a tool to make it easier, and budget your resources.

You CAN be a mom and a writer!

What better example for your kids than to have a dream, make a plan and follow through?

Are you a parent and a writer?

Please share your struggles and successes in a comment. 

 

Additional resources:

Michael Hyatt Podcast on Productivity

 

How to Make Time to Write When You Have Small Kids

When You Forget About Your Frozen Homemade Pizza Dough

   
 

I thought I would be good and use my frozen pizza dough to satisfy my craving for pizza the other day without succumbing to the lure of the drive through or delivery. 

I’m a WAHM writer who is not pulling any money yet, so saving money is a priority. 

  • Homemade frozen meals

 I made a nice stash of frozen food to eat when #secondbaby got here. Pizza dough was one of those foods. Now, baby is all of 5 weeks old and I’m really thanking my past super-pregnant self for the frozen foods. 
I pulled the dough from my stash and made plans to have it for dinner. But I had forgotten though that we made plans to have dinner with my parents! So, I left it out to deal with later. 

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  • Frozen Dough Preparation 

 I brushed the frozen dough with olive oil and covered it with a towel. Then I forgot about it. I accidentally left it out all night! But, I ended up with a delicious, thawed, well-risen dough by lunch time the next day. 

  • After thawing the dough

I spread the dough with pizza sauce and sprinkled with pepperoni and mozzarella cheese. I baked it for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees. I do wish I had used about 2x as much mozzarella on the pizza and more salt in my dough. Aside from that the pizza was delicious. This makes a hearty thick crusted pizza dough. 

Cloth Diaper Mommies and the Secret “Fluff” Society

Today was “day one” of cloth diapers for me. My little guy, #secondbaby, is only 4 weeks old. That’s also how old my career as a full-time WAHM writer is. To put it bluntly, we’re both shitting our pants. 

Our family is officially down to one income (and also one car, but that’s another story), so my husband and I have been looking for (more) ways to cut corners. This search includes a foray into cloth diapers. 

I’ve entered this world… And it seems there’s no turning back…*cue dramatic music*

I was given a “stash” of cloth diapers by a very generous friend (those are not cheap) and I’m learning how to use them. I tell you what, all those damn snaps and inserts are the devil! 

I mean, what the hell is this? 

  There are snaps and plastic liners and Velcro everywhere. And how is my baby supposed to NOT poop through this stuff? It’s cloth?  

 Obviously, it can be done extremely successfully as so many mommas have proved before me so splendidly. But starting cloth diapers is proving a challenge to me personally.

 Putting my kid in a diaper has be come less of a “change” and more of a put-the-puzzle-together -and-fold-it-just-right-snapping -everything- with-5-million-snaps and THEN…pray your kid doesn’t have a shit in it before you’re done.  Oops! Too late. Start over!

Cloth diapering is a steep learning curve for me and I’m only just realizing that there’s this cloth diaper mommy “cult” with their own shorthand language and extensive knowledge of everything from the methods of folding to the sheer”fluff” madness that accompanies the release of a new pattern of diaper. I had no idea that mommies would anticipate a pattern of a cloth diaper from a particular company and go crazy waiting to buy it like a teenager with the latest video game. It’s madness I tell you!

But they are also a group of caring loving mommas who generously reach out to one another. Even in “diaper only” blogs where the topics are limited to diapers, mommies lift eachother up and encourage one another even in more personal matters that are somewhat off-topic from diapering. 

 It’s a community held together by mommyhood and glorified poo catchers. “Fluff” mommies even reached out to me, almost instantaneously, when I cluelessly asked about cloth diapers on a few forums. I clearly didn’t know the first thing about cloth. But their generosity with their advice and encouragement was good for my soul even as I struggled with poop and pee leaking out of my new-to-me diapers. Mommy forums on Facebook can be such generous uplifting places. The rest of the world should take note and follow suit. I would happily be inducted into the secret “fluff” society if they will have me. They’re some sweet mommas. 

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How to Save $146 Per Month Making Homemade Pizza

  

 Pictured above: Two batches of homemade bread machine pizza dough. 

Does Making Your Own Pizza Pie Save Money? 

I did a price breakdown to show the value of homemade pizza versus the cost of delivery. 

Cost of Delivery Pizza:

Average cost of 1 pie delivered (+ tip and tax) – $25 

Average Cost of Homemade Pizza Ingredients:

Flour/bag of Great Value All Purpose Flour 25 lbs/$7.98 (buy 1)

Yeast/3 count dry package of pizza yeast/ $1.34 (buy 3)

Olive oil/Great Value Extra Virgin Olive Oil  25.5oz/ $5.74 (buy 1)

Water

Salt/Morton $0.78 (buy 1)

Honey/Great Value Honey 32oz/$7.88 (buy 1)

Pasta or pizza sauce/Great Value Traditional Pasta Sauce 42oz/$2.65 (buy 2)

Pepperoni/Hormel Original Pepperoni 6oz/$2.98 (buy 2)

Shredded cheese/Great Value shredded mozzarella cheese 32oz/$7.94 (buy 2)

Total average cost for all ingredients = $53.54

The bag of flour and ingredients will make roughly 8 pizzas for the price of 2 average delivery pizzas. 

    This one is a life saver for your food budget. If you have pizza dough squirreled away in your freezer, it’s so much less tempting to call out for delivery.

    If you get pizza 2x per week (and this is assuming only one pizza and no sides) delivered you are spending an average of $50 per week. That’s $200 per month! 

    If you make your pizza at home, you are saving $146 per month! I came up with this number by subtracting the cost of ingredients from the cost of delivery. 

    Another advantage to making your pizza at home is planning for healthy sides to add to your meal without ordering even more fast food. 

    You can further reduce the cost of ingredients by stocking up on items when they are on sale. I regularly buy and freeze shredded cheese and pepperoni when I find a great sale. 

    My method:

    There are hundreds of recipes for pizza dough online. I prefer to make mine in my bread machine. I found a great recipe (among other delicious recipes) for pizza dough in this book.  

     I prefer this recipe to any of the recipes I’ve found online for bread machine pizza dough. However, doing an online search might yield better results for you than it did me. If you are interested, you can get the book pictured above on Amazon or at your library. There are lots of great bread recipes in the book besides pizza dough. 

    Ok, I’m sold on making my own dough, you’re thinking. But, what now?

    #1 choose your method

    • Bread machine
    • Mixer
    • By hand
    • Ready made mix

    I make my ready-made homemade pizza dough from scratch in my breadmaker (I use the “dough” setting) but you can use a mixer or make it by hand or even go the super easy route and use a pizza dough mix. 

    #2 choose your recipe 

    • Recipe book
    • Mix
    • Online search 

    Pick through your recipe books at home or make a trip to the library. Experiment until you find one you like. Or experiment with ready made mixes. There are also lots of recipes to be found online. 


    #3 stock up
    !

    • Make large batches
    • Use a rectangle shape

    Make a few batches using your favorite recipe and store in your freezer. I store my pizza dough in rectangular shapes rather than circles. I do this to make the pizzas fit in my cookie sheets and into my square plastic freezer bags. I fit the dough to my aluminum covered cookie sheets and then cut the dough in half. I freeze the dough. When frozen, I remove the dough, cover with plastic wrap, fold in half, and put the dough into plastic freezer bags. 

       
       From this stage pictured above you simply fold the frozen pizza dough in on itself like closing a book and place in a freezer bag. Be sure to mark the date you made it!

    When you are ready for a quick pizza dinner, you can just take the dough directly out of the freezer, unwrap and place on aluminum covered cookie sheet. Bake with your favorite toppings. 

    This blog post is a great tutorial on exactly how to make a pizza using homemade frozen dough. The recipe she uses, by Crystal Paine, is not my favorite recipe but the instructions on freezing and baking are helpful.

    I love having ready made pizza dough in my freezer. I can still have pizza without breaking the bank!

    Goals for 2016 – Review of Week #1

    Progress on goals:

    This past week has been the first full week of 2016 and a test of resolve for my New Years Resolutions and goals. So far, I have hit all of my goals.

    Week One:

    GOAL #1: Exercise 3 days per week -check!

    I made two days at the gym this past week! Also, two days I exercised by walking around the block with #firstbaby.

    GOAL #2: Write 30 minutes per day 4 days per week-check!

    I made it this week clocking over two hours total writing. Scrivner is helping me keep on track as well as RescueTime.

    GOAL #3: Post 1 Blog Post Every Two Weeks-check!

    I’ve posted 4 blog posts this past week:

    Decluttering: http://www.onethousandwordstohome.com/2016/01/decluttering-is-part-of-my-nanowrimo-novel-editing-process-part-3/

    Novel editing: http://www.onethousandwordstohome.com/2016/01/editing-nanowrimo2015-novel-editing-day-2/

    http://www.onethousandwordstohome.com/2016/01/editing-nanowrimo2015-novel-editing-day-1/

    About my goals to be a WAHM writer: http://www.onethousandwordstohome.com/2016/01/goals-for-2016-becoming-a-writer-wahm/

     

    Decluttering is Part of My #Nanowrimo Novel Editing Process-Part 3

    Saturday’s Decluttering Session:

    This is where I started Saturday. Yesterday was a marathon session of decluttering and organizing. In order to make more time for me to write, I need to be able to find stuff and for my #firstbaby to actually WANT to go in his room! lol


    As I worked, boxing up clothes according to size, I listened to my new favorite podcast, The Portfolio Life by Jeff Goins. #066 is the episode with Stacy Claflin about how to make a living as a fiction writer. Right up my alley since that’s what I want to do. She even has a few books for free right at the start. I’ll be reading these after I finish Ashley Bell by Dean Koontz. It’s a library loan and about to expire and I’m super into the story!

    As I finally started boxing everything up with packing tape and labeling, I started to see light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. I also stumbled upon an interview on The Portfolio Life with guest Amy Porterfield. She’s a powerhouse of insight and ideas on how to make money online and make the transition from day job to WAHM.

     

    Ahhh….so much better. By this time though, was starting to burn out and my pregnant belly was making my back hurt. So I took a break and snuggled with #firstbaby.

     

    After some snuggles with #firstbaby, tea and continuing listening to podcasts, I finished up.

    THE FINISHED PRODUCT:

     

    Here is everything I boxed up for the attic. Stuff that will be way too big for #secondbaby and too small for #firstbaby. You can also see our Christmas tree all boxed up too, ready for the attic. We’re not the only ones who wait to long to take down the tree, right?

    These are clothes for both my boys! #secondbaby will be arriving in March. I feel much more ready now.  

    It took me all week to do this. I finished up Saturday, but this came after I invested about an hour per day all week in getting clothes sorted. All the pictures are from Saturday’s session. Whew!!! This is what Decluttering looks like.

    I donated 4 giant bags of clothes and toys too. I can’t believe how we fit all that stuff in our tiny house!

    If I can easily find everything I need for my babies, I have more time to write! This is a long term investment.

    What are you doing in your life to make room for writing?

    Editing #Nanowrimo2015 novel – Editing day #2

    Scout Semmes here! Writing early this morning

    After doing the #makoveryourmornings course with @crystalpaine I’ve been in the habit of getting up early and I want to get up early to finish my book! Today, I went through my manuscript and made templates for each character. They are still blank. All I have is the character’s name, but I will be able to go back and fill in the details later.

    My #nanowinner2015 novel in Scrivner

    My #nanowinner2015 novel in Scrivner

    As you can tell in the side bar, I have separated 8 chapters so far as I’m going along and I have A LOT of characters that I need to flesh out. But I’m really LOVING this program. You can also see that the main story is in the top pane, but I can still manipulate a character template in the bottom. This has already been incredibly helpful as I go through. I’m making notes on revisions too as I go.

    Day with #firstbaby

    image

    Husband, @knightsbayne had a guy’s day today, so it was just me and my little man. We did great! He usually cries when daddy leaves, but today I guess he wanted to spend some time with mommy! Yay! Daddy is usually his absolute favorite person. But today he spent an awesome day indoors with mommy.

    We did a lot of activities after I got back from the grocery store. We ate lunch and he actually said eat. : ) He’s still learning to talk and communicate his needs. He’s doing super super well!

    He likes his quesadillas that mommy makes for him. It’s corn tortillas, buttered, with melted cheese between them on a skillet. Nothing super fancy or complicated. Thank goodness! Did you notice I’m referring to myself in third-person? LOL #mommyproblems

    He loved coloring today! He usually doesn’t have that much of an attention span for that, but today it was rainy and cold outside, so we opened up his bag of markers and got to drawing. He kept saying, “I did it!” Super, super cute.

    #firstbaby, my 3-year-old toddler, fell asleep finally on the couch after I had tried to get him to take a nap for an hour. He also pooped his diaper right before falling asleep lol. When I walked by, tiptoeing (no small feat with me being 32 weeks pregnant with #secondbaby), and smelled that, it was in that awkward deciding moment…

    My thoughts: Change his diaper and risk waking him up? Or let him sleep in his own poop?

    Ah, #motherhood. When you have to make the hard decisions. I did go ahead and change him and by the grace of God, he went back to sleep. I tried to sleep with him, since I had been up since 5:45am after a late date-night last night with husband @knightsbayne. I don’t know why I couldn’t fall asleep…I at least rested for about an hour.

    After we woke up, we played and had dinner. We read Narnia tonight for about 30 minutes. He wandered off after listening quietly. He was super quiet, so I followed him to his bedroom…

    #firstbaby put himself to bed! He was down at 8:45pm tucked himself into his covers. It is 10pm now and he only just actually fell asleep after playing with his toys for a while, but he was ready to get into bed without any fuss at all. Considering how much he has resisted going down for naps and bed time for the past few days, I was shocked. Especially since he had a late 2 1/2 hr nap today.

    Grocery shopping and couponing

    Sure, you might not think it’s all that glamorous. But hey, a writer has to eat! And as a writer about to quit her part-time day job, it’s even more important to score those deals baby! It took me about two hours this morning to sort through gathered coupons from the past two weeks and pull the ones I needed for the #Kroger mega sale. Many thanks to @krogerkrazy for all their hard work to gather deals for me to look up! It saves me SOOOO much money and time to have a blogger specifically for my favorite store, especially since she does the unadvertised deals which few bloggers do.

    I also made a list for Albertsons to get the sale produce. Apples, onions, carrots, tomatoes, pears and bananas. I consider anything $0.99/lb and under a good price for produce.

    My #kroger haul today included stocking up on diapers for #secondbaby! Ended up spending $40 on two bags and two boxes of diapers for both boys. Saved myself about 50% on diapers thanks to coupons, sale, and a Huggies catalina generating at #kroger for diapers!

    We also needed the normal stuff, toilet paper (scored @ $0.21/per roll!), cereal ($0.89 per box), Tide laundry detergent pods ($1.50 each bag), bread (FREE Friday coupon, NLA), discount canned pumpkin ($0.49/can), discounted Heinz gravy ($0.69/jar.) Also got some salad making stuff: lettuce, cucumber and spinach.

    Also, scored a sweet deal on our favorite pasta sauce, Classico, which is usually the more expensive brand of sauce. I stocked up 5 jars for $0.99 each! We has just used up our LAST jar of pasta sauce when my husband @knightsbayne made me some delish spaghetti the other night. Just in time!

    I had already cooked for myself for the week using what we had in the pantry. See my recipe reviews HERE

    But, we have plans for everything I bought. I mostly practice very loose meal planning because my son is a picky eater and my husband mostly likes to cook for himself.

    The red pasta sauce will end up in spaghetti and on pizza. I use a slightly different recipe, but @crystalpaine has a recipe for breadmachine pizza dough. I roll mine out, top with cheese and pepperoni and sauce, etc. before I freeze, but I do make my own frozen pizza.

    The white Alfredo sauce I plan to use for a chicken alfredo and spinach pasta for an at-home date night with @knightsbayne. Nice thing about the recipe is it is totally a freezer meal!!!! I love this recipe by The Virtuous Wife.

    We’ll be eating a lot of salads because I’m trying not to gain more weight than I already have with this pregnancy. Stocked up on fruit for snacks and for #firstbaby who eats fruit at each meal.

    Exercise

    I am SOOOO sore from yesterday’s workout that I could barely move my legs this morning. So, I’m taking today off. I’ll get back to it tomorrow though!

    Editing #Nanowrimo2015 novel – Editing day #1

    Last night, I was too tired to get much of anything done on my novel. We had a very long, but productive day.

    Accomplished yesterday:

    • Spending time with my husband
      • I will absolutely admit that my husband is head-and-shoulders hands-down a better cook than I am. Totally. So, my husband cooked for me last night. Yay!My husband made us an awesome tuna steak and shrimp dinner. My parents, for Christmas, gift us with food we would otherwise not be able to afford. Like TUNA STEAK. Omg. So delicious. my husband made this marinade concoction for the steaks and I ate almost the entire thing. It was amazing. Also, my husband can boil shrimp like nobody’s business. So, we had an at-home movie-and-dinner date after the little guy #firstbaby went to bed. : )Husband @knightsbayne and I are obsessed with the Amazon Prime tv show, The Man in High Castle. I love alternate realities, dystopian of course. This one is one of the best I have ever seen! Anyone else a fan? No spoilers!!!!
    • Getting food ready for the coming week
      • I have been experiencing pregnancy-induced pleurisy, so I’ve been trying some home-remedy type foods. Since, you know, I’m pregnant and can’t take ANYTHING. So, I’ve made this Indian spice tumeric chicken recipe, with a little modification. I subbed coconut milk for chicken broth and diced tomatoes for tomato sauce. I’ve never made it soupy before. I usually just omit everything but those ingredients. This time it turned out like soup. I also made it in my crockpot. Delish…
      • I also made this lentil taco recipe in my crockpot yesterday omitting just the salsa. Also amazing. Beef seems to aggravate my condition, but I LOVE burritos. So this seems to be a great alternative. I had this topped with cheese in a  tortilla yesterday. A+
      • I tried making my own pita bread in my bread machine using a recipe that wasn’t exactly FOR a bread machine. Eh…They didn’t come out with the big air pockets I was looking for, so I’ll be trying this recipe later. What’s good Indian food without pita bread? I love pita bread, so any excuse to eat it. Also, I don’t know what it looks like in your area, but in Louisiana at least, premade pita bread it SOOOOO expensive. That’s why my quest for a good recipe.
      • You probably noticed that I love my crock pot and my slow cooker…a lot.
    • Getting the house cleaned and ready for #secondbaby
      • My husband and I are doing some organizing and purging of our bedroom to make way for our #secondbaby crib. We cleaned up A LOT yesterday, so the spot for our baby’s bed no longer looks like this…
      • IMG_6208.JPG
      • Sure, it’s not finished yet, but it’s progress! We’ll moving the cabinet soon and have space for #secondbaby in our bedroom!
    • Spending time with my #firstbaby, my three-year-old
      • I try to do fun and educational games with my three-year-old. We played and went for a walk yesterday after he INSISTED that he did not need a nap. Then, promptly at 6pm, fell asleep on top of me. His bed time is at 8pm, so of course we had to keep him up and awake for 2 hours. Oy! Children, so contrary. LOL
    • Excercise!
      • I tried out this preggy exercise video. It uses yoga and pilates (which I have never tried before) and seems like a doable routine for very pregnant me. (32 weeks guys!)
    • A little writing time
      • By the end of the day, I was pretty tired and sore from my new exercise routine. But I managed to get a little work done on Scrivner in the form of playing with the character templates. Hopefully, my writing time will be more productive tomorrow!