Monday, January 16, 2017

34 Weeks Pregnant

I wasn't planning on updating this week, but then I thought, there aren't many weeks left of this pregnancy!
I washed and put away all our baby boy clothes from newborn up to 9 months. As I was doing this, I realized we're going to need to buy some baby clothes! Both my boys were born in the Spring, so I didn't use a ton of warm clothes when they were newborns. But the weather up here in February is quite cold, so I'll need to shop for some warm cozy clothes.

Overall I'm feeling okay, but I do feel really tired most afternoons. And I pretty much can't stay awake past 9 or 9:30 most nights. My appetite hasn't been as big lately. That's probably because eating large amounts makes me uncomfortable. It feels like there is no room left inside of me for anything. My lower back has been hurting quite a bit if I'm on my feet a lot. One strange symptom I've been having is itchy skin. Certain parts of my body (my shoulder, my inner elbows, my ankles) have been itching like crazy! I can't figure out if it's dry skin or something pregnancy-related.

Adam and I finally got serious about baby names this past week. Adam was reading off a list of names from the internet and every once in a while we'd stop on one that we sort of liked. But we never really loved any of them, nor did we agree on the ones we liked. It's hard to pick a name that sounds good with Nullmeyer! The names I really like just don't sound right with our name. I'm very particular about a first, middle and last name flowing nicely and sounding good when said out loud. All of our kids have 2-syllable first names, 1-syllable middle names, and obviously a 3-syllable last name. I told Adam I was afraid we'd end up just settling on a name that we didn't really love. But then he read a name that we both liked, and had never really considered. And the more we said it out loud, the more we liked it. In particular, we both like the nicknames that could be used for this name. So I think we may have chosen our baby's name!

My next update will be at 36 weeks, after I see my doctor and have an ultrasound to confirm baby is head-down.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Hard-To-Handle Boys

I have two hard-to-handle boys. If you have been blessed with one of these, go to the website I am sharing below!

Lucas has a very aggressive and impulsive streak. He reacts at the drop of a hat. One tiny word, one tiny action, anything that he doesn't agree with can set him off. And when Lucas is provoked, he gets physical. He hits, he punches, he throws objects, he knocks over the trash can, he head-butts, he scratches, he destroys anything in his path. Lucas is also extremely impulsive. If we arrive at a store and he decides it would be fun to run into the parking lot, then he most definitely will. I am constantly on guard with him, anticipating what he will do next. I have had to brush up on my self-defense skills because I have a boy named Lucas.

However, Lucas is also my most loving and affectionate child. He smothers me with kisses first thing in the morning and before bed at night. If he accidentally hurts me, he says sorry over and over while hugging and kissing me. He runs up and plows into me with his big hugs. He loves picking me flowers. Lucas is constantly telling me he loves me. The other day he was sitting on the toilet doing his business and he frantically called me in. Turns out he just needed to tell me he loves me.

As Ryan gets older I feel less and less comfortable sharing things about him, particularly the negative things. Ryan has some personality traits that we have really struggled with since the time he was a baby. And although he isn't as loud and in your face as his little brother, he challenges me each and every day with his mood, attitude, eating habits, sleeping habits, and his ability to get along with his brother. That boy sure has some moods.

As I try to navigate being a boy Mom, I keep coming back to the same resource. It's called the MOB Society, and it stands for Mothers of Boys. http://www.themobsociety.com/ Specifically, they have a series titled "Hard-To-Handle Boys" by Brooke McGlothlin. And every time I read an article from them, I find myself nodding my head, saying "yes!" and feeling relieved that finally someone gets it. I have often felt so alone with my struggles with my boys' behavior. I don't know many people who have boys like mine. Boys who fight constantly, who slam the doors so hard they put holes in the wall, boys who give me push-back on every single thing. But every time I read an email or resource from the MOB Society, I come away feeling more equipped, and more able to appreciate and love the boys God has given me. If you're having a hard time with your boy and you'd welcome some Godly guidance, GO to this website!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Week of Dinners #7

Here is our latest week of dinners! I realized I hadn't documented any dinners for the past month. Now that the holidays are all behind us I was anxious to start cooking some better food. I also really want to start preparing some freezer meals for when baby comes. I've done this before and it was so helpful. Here is my blog about freezer cooking before Jenna was born: http://nullybabyblog.blogspot.com/2014/11/freezer-cooking-gone-wild.html

I loved having all that food in the freezer. The only problem is that 90% of it were meals my boys wouldn't eat. This time around I want to make fewer casserole-type meals, because the kids won't eat them. What picky-kid-friendly freezer meals can you recommend? I want to get started soon!

Ok, on to our meals from last week:

Sunday: Cod, Whole Wheat Couscous/Quinoa, Broccoli

We had just returned home from the Bay Area and our fridge was pretty bare. I dug some frozen broccoli out of the freezer. On the side I microwaved one of those single serve quinoa bowls. Then I cooked the last of our whole wheat couscous and mixed it all together. It turned out pretty tasty! I also cooked this frozen cod I got from Costco. It has great flavor.

For the kids I baked these fish sticks, also from Costco.

Monday: Steak, Baked Potato, Salad

I found this grass-fed steak on a great clearance, so I snatched it up. I pan-seared it and just seasoned with salt and pepper. I dip my steak in Worcestershire (so does Ryan). On the side I baked a few Yukon gold potatoes and made a big salad of lettuce, cucumber, radish, cherry tomatoes, and avocado.

Tuesday: One-Pan Pesto Chicken and Veggies

This was a new recipe for us. Here is the link: http://juliasalbum.com/2016/06/one-pan-pesto-chicken-and-veggies/ It contained chicken breast, pesto, cherry tomatoes, green beans (instead of asparagus), and sun-dried tomatoes. I served it over whole wheat thin spaghetti and topped with parmesan. Adam doesn't typically like pesto but he really liked this!

Wednesday: Ham and Bean Soup, Whole Wheat Rolls

I had ham in the freezer leftover from Christmas, so I defrosted it and chopped it up to make this ham and bean soup. Recipe is here: http://www.artandthekitchen.com/ham-and-bean-soup/
Now bean soup isn't generally Adam's favorite. And neither is ham. But Adam and I both love this soup. It has terrific flavor. On the side we had buttered whole wheat rolls, also defrosted from Christmas. Here is a close-up of the soup.


Thursday: Turkey Taco Quinoa Skillet
I make tacos quite frequently because Adam and Ryan both love them. But sometimes I just get tired of making the same old thing. I found this recipe online and it sounded easy and healthy. It was basically a one-pan meal with ground turkey, seasonings, quinoa, corn, black beans, tomatoes, green chiles and cheese. I thought it was just okay. The flavor was good but we weren't exactly sure how to eat it. I guess I could have gotten out tortillas to put it in, but instead I ate mine salad style, over lettuce. I added avocado and tomatoes on top to freshen it up. Not sure I'd make this one again.

 Friday: Baked Ziti, Garlic Bread, Green Beans
Adam requested that I make baked ziti one night this week. Back in high school we used to walk to the nearby mall food court at lunchtime. Adam always got baked ziti from Sbarro. But he had a bad habit of leaving his leftovers in his locker, and so you can guess what his locker used to smell like. So anyways, baked ziti reminds me of when Adam and I were dating in high school. I looked online for copycat Sbarro ziti recipes, and settled on this one: http://www.food.com/recipe/copycat-sbarro-baked-ziti-217908
I had such high hopes for this dinner but I thought it was pretty bland. I added a little extra sauce on top, but it still seemed like it needed something. My Dad was here for dinner so he kindly brought us some garlic bread. I was going to cook the rest of our fresh green beans from earlier in the week but they had already gone bad, so I just opened a can of green beans.
What recipes have you tried recently?

Friday, January 6, 2017

Jenna's Current Cuteness

Jenna has been saying and doing so many cute things lately. I'm afraid I'm going to forget them (since I'm really bad at writing in my kids' baby books). So here are a few things she has done lately that I want to record. Jenna is at such a fun age! She is generally happy and just wants to play and have fun and do adorable things.


-Jenna loves shaking her booty. Whenever I'm changing her, or just whenever the mood strikes, she will start shaking her behind and singing "Shaking my booty!"

-I recently taught her how to do an eskimo kiss (where you rub your noses together side to side). A few minutes later she asked me to say yes with my nose. I was confused at first but then I realized she wanted me to rub her nose up and down, like I was nodding.

-She loves jumping face-first on things and yelling "cannonball!"

-When Jenna yawns she says "Oh Mommy I'm so tired".

I recorded this video back in November and never shared it. The first half shows her 2-yr old attitude, and the second half shows her being smart and cute and singing the ABC's.

-Each child has their "spot" on the couch where they like to sit and watch TV. Jenna's spot is in the corner by the window and she likes asking me "I sit in my pot and watch something?". She gets upset if anyone else tries to sit there.

-Adam says "Boom Shaka Laka" sometimes. So now Jenna loves saying "Boom Shaka Shaka!"

-Jenna loves to pray. So far she's figured out the words "Dear God" and "Amen, dig in!".

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

What I Ate In A Day - 32 Weeks Pregnant

I haven't been eating that well lately. Between all the holidays and just being cooped up in the house so much, I've gotten lazy with my eating habits. I am surrounded by desserts and all I feel like doing is sitting on the couch in my pajamas and eating something yummy and fattening. I'm sure being pregnant has something to do with this! Unfortunately this is the point in my pregnancies when I tend to start gaining weight rapidly. I'm trying my best not to blow up like a balloon over the next couple months, while still keeping in mind that I'm pregnant and I have cravings and I am HUNGRY.

So I decided to kick off the week by documenting what I ate in a day. Sharing pictures of what goes in my mouth forces me to be more disciplined. Because how embarrassing would it be if I showed you a picture of 5 cookies and an entire can of chili covered in cheese? And that's just for lunch. Not that I ever ate that. Ahem.

One thing I've noticed with this pregnancy is that what I eat strongly affects how I feel. It's like everything is heightened with this pregnancy. If I eat too much sugar or carbs at lunchtime, I feel nauseous all afternoon and have zero energy. If I eat too much at dinner I lay in bed with indigestion and heartburn. On the days that I eat healthier I feel SO much better. I've never noticed it this much before. So with all that said, here is what I ate yesterday.

8:30am:

This was a late breakfast for me, but I was up most of the night with a sick Ryan, so I was moving slow in the morning. I started with coffee with a generous splash of cream. I also had oatmeal topped with blueberries, a little sliced banana, and crunchy peanut butter. I cooked 1/2 cup oats in 1 cup milk and took some out to serve to Jenna, so this is a little less than that.

1:00pm:

You can't see the lettuce but I promise there's a generous pile of red and green lettuce on the bottom. I topped my salad with cucumbers, radishes, 1 boiled egg, 3/4 of an avocado and some romano Caesar dressing. I also drank a Sparkling Ice essence of tangerine drink. It was a free item in my Safeway online order. I liked it because it was simply carbonated water and fruit essence. No weird fake sugars for me!

Immediately after lunch I was craving something sweet. I literally had the square of Ghiradelli chocolate in my hands, but then I decided to put it down and wait a few minutes. And my craving actually passed! (Or I got distracted by my sick child)

3:00pm:

I don't love these crackers by themselves, but they're great with sharp cheddar cheese. On the side I had a mandarin orange.

6:30pm:
This was a new recipe called One-Pan Pesto Chicken and Veggies. It was delicious! It contained diced chicken breast, sun dried tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, green beans, and pesto. I put mine over whole wheat thin spaghetti and topped it with parmesan. I really wanted to go back for a second bowl but I knew I'd just be uncomfortably full, so I didn't.

8:30pm:

I almost always have a snack before bed these days, and it's typically a bowl of cereal. I couldn't decide between yogurt or cereal, so I had both! That's a bowl of dry rice chex on the right. The greek yogurt is a new chocolate mocha flavor, and it basically tastes like dessert. I recently tried a Mexican Chocolate flavor of yogurt by Noosa and it was so so good. I couldn't find it at the store, so I got this instead.

Not every day is as balanced as this day, but I think I did a good job eating until I was full, rather than eating just to eat, or just because I'm pregnant. Now let's see if I can keep this up! How much do you give in to your cravings when you're pregnant?


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Reading To Ryan

When I had a conference with Ryan's 1st grade teacher recently, I wasn't surprised to hear that he's a bit behind in his reading. He does fine with math and he loves drawing and coloring, but he's just not interested in reading. He has 3 little books he has to read every day for homework, and it's like pulling teeth getting him to sit down and read them.
His teacher suggested we read more to him at home because this would help to get him more interested in reading. It might not necessarily improve his skills right away, but at least it would get him more excited about books. I thought this was a great suggestion, since I love reading.

She suggested we start with the Magic Tree House series. To my delight, Ryan loves them! They are adventure books about a sister and brother, and each book takes them to a different location in history, all from their magic tree house. We are currently on book number 7 and at the end of each chapter Ryan begs us to continue reading. Success!

I recently checked out Sideways Stories from Wayside School from the library because I remember loving that book as a child. Adam and I were both excited to read it again. Ryan liked it okay, but definitely not as much as the tree house series. I think in a couple years he will be ready to read the Goosebumps series. Adam and I both remember loving those books. I also plan on introducing him to the Boxcar children book series when he's a little older.

What else can you suggest I read to Ryan? Or what books would be age appropriate for him to start reading himself? I'd love any suggestions, specifically those a 6 year old boy would love. I really want to develop his love of reading!

Monday, January 2, 2017

32 Week Prenatal Checkup

Things are getting real! I had my 32 week checkup a few days ago and everything is looking good.

Total Weight Gain: 27 lbs
Blood Pressure: 112/62

Ok now take a look again at the picture above and compare it to the one below, from 2 weeks ago. Major growth spurt, right?? Also, the one above was taken at night while the one from a couple weeks ago was morning. Big difference!

Baby's heartbeat sounded strong and he is moving around kicking me like crazy. It was a really brief and uneventful appointment. In my doctor's words, my body is basically on auto-pilot.

I started taking iron supplements last week and I think I might be feeling a little more energy returning. Or that could be because Adam has been home helping me, which helps tremendously.

Overall I'm feeling fine, but it is getting a lot harder to move around. Getting up from the floor, rolling over in bed, and bending over are all really uncomfortable. It just feels like I'm squishing the baby.

I think these next two months are going to fly by. While Adam was home from work last week we moved the changing table/dresser from Jenna's room to our room. I took all of Jenna's clothes out and organized them in her closet. So now we have a little corner of our room set up with the lazy-boy recliner and the changing table. We also got down a bin of baby boy clothes that I saved from Ryan and Lucas. Now I need to wash and store everything in the dresser.