Second Trimester Wrap Up

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Today marks my FIRST day of my third trimester, so I thought it was only fair to do a quick wrap up of my second trimester. First trimester was rough because my body physically, emotionally and mentally was accepting that pregnancy was really happening. I think it is important for you and your partner to use that time to mentally and physically prepare for this new exciting chapter of your lives.  I have learned that you should share the news when you feel It is deemed appropriate. Most people tend to become public with it during the 12 week mark and it is when it is normally safe. I told my parents around then and told others publicly a month later.  We had a variety of things going on and picked the best time to share with others.But I have  had some great moments just reflecting on my second trimester

 

Now, I can honestly say second trimester is better than the first. Maternity Glow has kicked in!

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Your body has transitioned to being pregnant morning sickness subsides for the most part. It was during my second trimester around my 5th month I actually started to show and at the sixth month when my stomach was truly round and hard ( and it is not abs) lol. I actually had to upgrade to maternity pants around 4 and half months because I couldn’t fit any of my jeans and button them up. I was a bit paranoid of harming the baby so I just bought maternity jeans and rotated between those tights and dresses.

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I would say up till now (knock on wood) I have not really experienced much pain except lower back pain! Oh boy and I do feel it especially as the belly grows it its throwing my spine off and curving it so it makes it feel painful at times. In particular when I sleep I get uncomfortable because starting at 5 months, you have to sleep on your side. Doctors prefer you to sleep on your left side. I am personally a back sleeper so it is uncomfortable to change the way you have been sleeping your whole life.  Honestly, to this day I really struggle with sleeping on my side.Just as the weight continues to grow it can hurt to have all of my weight on one side weighing down. But it is so important to sleep on your side because you could be cutting off  blood circulation to your baby and not sleeping on your side increases the risk of a still birth! So my husband Willie will tap me and keep me accountable in the middle of the night if by some chance I land on my back for a moment so I can readjust myself to sleep on my side. Pregnancy pillows did not work for me but I know it has worked plenty for other moms!

My Husband and I recently did our Baby Registry! Well most people do it around 4-5 months but we waited till the middle-end of my six months.  We wanted to make it simple so we chose Target, Amazon and a small Christian business called The Modern Burlap! It was hard to figure out what to register for and where to start! So here are some essentials and must haves needed for a baby plus extras and good things to have for a registry. It took us a bit longer to figure out so we did our registry when we were ready.

  • Infant car seat
  • Stroller or baby carrier
  • Newborn clothing
  • Crib, mattress, mattress cover and crib sheets
  • Baby monitor
  • Bottles, a breast pump if breastfeeding, formula if not
  • Bibs and burp cloths
  • Newborn-size disposable or cloth diapers and wipes
  • Baby bath tub and toiletries
  • Baby first aid kit, rectal thermometer and nail clippers
  • Baby bouncer

Baby Extras!

  • Clothes
  • Cloth diapers
  • Blankets
  • Glass bottles
  • Cribs
  • Strollers
  • Baby carriers
  • Bouncers
  • Baby monitor
  • Toys

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I have been using quotes and verses as confirmations to help my mind ease during the good and harder moments in pregnancy. The fact I am attempting natural birth, it is know that it has helped so many women in the process but for myself in the past. SO, if you see me posting a bunch of verses and quotes it is for you but it is for me too! I am trying to shift my mentality in order to believe in myself especially during this process. The fact that I have not given birth yet, I am trying to eliminate any fear but know that I am capable and my body was MADE FOR THIS!

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What I have found to really help my back pain is walking! Before pregnancy I would jog at a local path but since I have gotten pregnant and BIGGER it is hard to jog so I walk. That has helped SOOOOO Much to alleviate that back pain and there are so many wins from doing that. I have been able to be physically active and help with my posture. I also do hope and plan to deliver naturally and that is a major way that it is suppose to help! Fingers crossed (Especially during labor.) I will let you know about that part later!

Since I want to do a natural and non medicated  birth, so I have been on YouTube constantly to asking my friends and people I know the answers to questions I may have. I also have been reading and have plenty of books on my MUST read list to prepare for not just birth but Post par tum and this new chapter in our lives, Parenting! My current reading books are Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth (Shout out to Yore) and The Mama Natural Week-By-Week Guide to Pregnancy & Childbirth  by Geneviene Howland.

During this time, I really started using my baby apps on my phone! I downloaded The Bump and What To Expect, which I use daily to read articles  and learn more about the stages of pregnancy I am at. I love how I can track and see where my baby’s size and features are at.  So today I am 7 months officially and I entered into the third and final Trimester! Ahhh! I will continue to post updates about my experience!

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2018 is Year of Something New

 

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I have taken a hiatus … a very LONG hiatus. Life just got super busy so just to fast forward over the last year and half. I got married to the love of my life. I am truly blessed to have a husband that support me in my endeavors and dreams that I want to pursue in life. I truly feel like ( and  I have) a partner  in this crazy thing called life.

 

21765042_10210932477123420_8469839614303037617_nHe encourages me and we support each other in our goals that we have for ourselves. Now we are embarking on a new journey to be parents to a baby girl! We are so thrilled to have her join us in April and be apart of our lives forever. God has truly given us a blessing.

 

 

I started my masters program around my last post and just graduated a few weeks ago ( December 2017). It was awesome because on that day we were able to share the joy with our family and close friends in finding out the gender.  (Shoutout to Rediet Solomon for putting my gender reveal and decorating my graduation dinner and gender reveal party so beautifully!)

Now if you asked me that day or anytime before, I swore up and down I was having a boy. This is from majority of people feeling like we are having a boy to having a vivid dream of my son. So, when I saw that we were having a girl…. now that was a shocker. But, I am SO THRILLED! Just the idea of having a mother and daughter  relationship. I got to experience that with my mom and I am so excited to pass that down to my daughter.

 

IMG_3030Check out our Gender Reveal Video here: Gender Reveal Video

Just looking back at my first trimester I really had a quite pleasant experience. I did experience some feelings of nausea  but it wasn’t too bad. During this time, it is soaking in the reality and levels of shock that this pregnancy is happening. I definitely was going through LEVELS of shock. But, just to see the joy on Willie’s face truly made my life. I don’t think I will ever forget that for the rest of my life. It is such a joy going into this journey together. The first trimester you are definitely feeling the transition into pregnancy and honestly the best word I can describe it for me just to be frank is…. UNCOMFORTABLE. Now, don’t get me wrong it is a beautiful thing and I LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE THE JOURNEY. Finding out your pregnant and holding it in while people do not know yet is extremely tough. It is like having a secret relationship no one knows about lol. You want to tell everyone but want to wait until it is the right time.  On top of just having so much body changes and not letting everyone in on what is going on with you is so difficult.

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Side note: What my life consists of nowadays111

 

I didn’t really start showing with my bump until about my 5th month and now I am 6 months and 2 weeks. I can’t wait to share my journey and seriously to any moms and dads out there if you have any advice, favorite baby products, books, videos, classes, … whatever I am so open to hearing about them! Willie and I are praying for a great journey that we have ahead of us and If you can put us in your prayers, we appreciate it! But seriously… 2018 will truly be the year of Something New and I can’t wait!

 

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Recipe of the Week: Chicken Parmesan

When you get home from a long day of work and want to whip up something hearty but fast, this is definitely a recipe to consider! This recipe is great for big groups or if you want leftovers for lunch and the next night’s dinner if you will be too busy to cook! You can’t go wrong with with Chicken Parmesan!

 

  1. Heat oven to 375°F.
  2. Pour sauce into 13×9-inch baking dish. Stir in 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp.) Parmesan. Add chicken;chickenparm
  3. Coat the Chicken in egg. Then in a seperate bowl coat it with  turn to evenly coat both sides of each breast with sauce. Cover.
  4. Bake 30 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF). Meanwhile, cook spaghetti as directed on package, omitting salt.
  5. Top chicken with remaining cheeses; bake, uncovered, 5 min. or until mozzarella is melted.chicken parm
  6. Drain spaghetti. Serve topped with chicken and sauce.chickenparminana

Recipe of the Week: Cauliflower Fried Rice & Whole 30 through the lens

whole30header1I took a look back at the last 30 days in trying Whole 30. It has been quite a refreshing and rejuvenating path that I have taken. Whole 30 has truly made me fall back in love, with REAL Food! ( NON PROCESSED FOODS) . Whole 30 made me want to be more conscious of what I was putting into my body. I didn’t feel like I was doing anything extreme doing Whole 30. I ended up dropping 9 pounds over the course of 30 days. Many people do, do Whole 30 in different rounds. Whole 30 is a development of a new eating LIFESTYLE. I would recommend Whole 30 .(Mind you I am not a doctor, so if you run it by your doctor).

 

Here are the basic guidelines of Whole 30!

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Cauliflower Fried Rice #Whole30Approved

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower, (about 2½ cups chopped in a food processor)
  • 2 Tbs sesame oil
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed
  • 2-3 Tablespoons soy sauce (more or less to taste)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 Tbsp chopped green onions (optional)
Instructions
  1. Rinse and chop the cauliflower into florets and put into a food processor. (If you don’t have a food processor continue to chop the cauliflower into tiny pieces.) Pulse until the cauliflower until it is small and resembles rice.
  2. Preheat a large skillet or wok to medium heat. Pour sesame oil in the bottom. Add white onion and peas and carrots and fry until tender.
  3. Slide the onion, peas and carrots to the side, and pour the beaten eggs onto the other side. Using a spatula, scramble the eggs. Once cooked, mix the eggs with the vegetable mix.
  4. Add the cauliflower to the veggie and egg mixture. Pour the soy sauce on top. Stir and fry the rice and veggie mixture until heated through and cauliflower is tender. Add chopped green onions if desired.

 

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Recipe of the week: Spaghetti Squash #Whole30Edition

spa5Two weeks ago on October 26th, I started the Whole 30 challenge for myself. I was at the point where I wanted to do something for my body where I can  feel healthier and feel better about my body! A good friend of mine, Ruhama did it and I saw how great it was. So I finally decided to take up the challenge.

 

What is Whole 30?

According to Whole30.com “It is nutritional program designed to change your life in 30 days. Think of it as a short-term nutritional reset, designed to help you put an end to unhealthy cravings and habits, restore a healthy metabolism, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system. Certain food groups (like sugar, grains, dairy and legumes) could be having a negative impact on your health and fitness without you even realizing it. ” So you go through a 30 day detox cutting carbs and most dairy. Just making sure you are focusing 0n having natural sugars such as fruits and not added or processed foods or Sugars.

 

Update 1 #Day7 ( November 1st, 2015)- Lost 3.5 Lbs

Update 2 #Day14 ( November 8th, 2015)- Lost 2.5 Lbs

Total: 6lbs in 2 weeks.

 

I feel so good about my choices in food! I feel so much healthier and that I have so much energy!

 

If your considering Whole 30, Here is a GREAT Recipe to try out!

Spaghetti Squash

 

 Ingredients
-1 whole spaghetti squash
-1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
-Gray salt and freshly ground black pepper
-4 cups prepared (jarred) marinara sauce ( trader joes, Sprouts, whole foods, have some that are compliant)
-Shredded Chicken,Ground Turkey or Beef

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Directions

1.)Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

2.)Cut the squashes in half and scrape out seeds. Line an oven tray with aluminum foil.

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3.)Season the spaghetti squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

4.) Place flesh side down and roast for 30 to 40 minutes until fully cooked. Remove from the oven and let rest until cool enough to handle.

6.) Cook the meat till brown and done. Add taco seasoning and picante( for flavoring to the meat if you please)

7.)Meanwhile heat the marinara sauce in a large saute pan & combine the ground meat into the sauce. ( You can add salt, italian seasoning, basil, pepper, if you like)

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8.)When squash is cool enough to handle, using a large kitchen spoon scrape the strands of squash from the inside of the skin. Toss the spaghetti squash in the pan with the hot marinara for just long enough to get hot.

9.)Serve and enjoy.

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Event to Check Out: ZAAF Pop Up Shop

 

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Take a stroll and get an exclusive sneak peak as ZAAF comes to Dallas!

Before you walk over and enjoy your evening at the Texas State Fair, come and spend your Friday evening getting exclusive peek and selection on one of the trendiest ZAAF Products! You can snag some amazing pieces from the men’s and women’s line! ZAAF’s collection contains luxury apparel and leather accessories produced by highly skilled artisans in Ethiopia. Come join ZAAF at our Premiere Pop Up Shop. ZAAF has been featured in Elle, CNN, and more. Each piece is made to exact standards and showcases beautiful craftsmanship and natural resources unique to the region it draws its inspiration from. ZAAF is a word that means “tree” in the ancient and noble Amharic language originating from Ethiopia. More information can be found on ZAAF can be found at http://zaafcollection.com/

ZAAF products will be up to 40% off! MAKE SURE TO RSVP HERE  at http://www.zaafpopupshop.splashthat.com AND ATTEND, YOU WILL BE ENTERED IN A GIVEAWAY AND COULD WIN A PIECE FOR YOURSELF!

*Use promo code YELP15 to receive 15% off of your online  purchase.

Date:10/9/2015

Time: 4:00pm-8:30pm

Location: Glasshouse Studios

830 Exposition Avenue Suite 220

Dallas, TX 75226

*Parking is adjacent to right of Glasshouse Studios, mention ZAAF Pop Up shop at the gate for complimentary parking.

*You can also take the DART and Glasshouse Studios is conveniently located across the Street from the Fair Park Station

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Wedding Wednesdays : Creative Centerpieces #PartTwo

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With one of the most important days to come, you are probably planning everything to the “Tee”. Every bride wants their special day to have details to stand out. We are going to go through some ideas that may go with your theme!

 

Happy Planning!

Sweet Display Centerpiece

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Displaying your favorite sweet, can let everyone get to know more and about you and your groom! Sharing is caring!

Gift box/Favor Display

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This display can kill two birds with one stone. It is a way to use your favors to your guests but recreate the display the art of giving with your centerpieces.

Medical Glassware Centerpieces

 

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Maybe your love your love for science or you and your loved one met in through a medical experience or passion for it. Its a great way for your guests to acknowledge that!

Fruit & Vegetable Centerpiece

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This may be a way to display your love for the season or show if you and your loved ones are health nuts. There are many ways to use fruit and vegetables in your favor!

Lanterns and Candles

CP3Using Lanterns or candles are your centerpieces is a popular alternative choice!It is a great way to light up the room!