When in Rome…Have a Baby Shower!

This past Saturday we were thrown a baby shower by Craig’s family in Rome, New York.  It could not have been more perfect!  A huge thank you to his cousin, Kayla for organizing and planning it all with the help from his Aunt Mary, Uncle Curtis, and cousin Jaimie!  Without a doubt I am a lucky woman to have such an amazing man, and with the added bonus of his wonderful family it just makes everything so much more of a blessing!

Rome Baby Shower

 ❤ Our Favorite Moments ❤

  1. Craig’s Grandmother gave us baby pictures of Craig and photos of his mother and father.  Seeing the photos along with the candle set up to honor them immediately made the tears begin to flow.

 

2. How beautifully everything was set up…the photos do not do them any justice!  The basketball to have guests sign, the candle to light as an honor to Craig’s parents, the mimosa bar, balloons, beer mugs for the men to take as favors, and the candles the ladies received to burn when baby arrives were all just incredible!

 

3. The food!  The food was never ending and delicious—it was brought out in waves starting with breakfast which included eggs, breakfast potatoes, and french toast.  Then salad, along with chicken French, alfredo pasta, and grilled veggies.  Delta Lake Inn definitely has amazing food!

 

4. The games…everyone enjoyed the games and I was able to be the one to de-whistle Uncle Curtis because he said the word “baby”…love that shower game!

 

5. The desserts!!!  Creampuffs, cupcakes, and cannolis, Ohhh…My!  even though I couldn’t technically enjoy them as much as I would have liked they are delicious (I’ve had one here and there for a treat as I closely monitor my sugar).  The best part was the blue faces if they ate one of the blue frosted cupcakes!

 

6. The thoughtful gifts!  From the little red wagon, the sporty bathrobe, the basketball hoop, the million different balls in a box, the adorable suits, the tiny little outfits, and the dresser to put them all in we truely loved everything!  Driving home was quite eventful…haha!

 

7. The people!  It’s always a fun time when we are able to travel to Rome and spend time with Craig’s family, but this time was a little more special because he was able to see some people he hadn’t seen in a long time.  His aunt even drove from Michigan to be there!

 

8. The unplanned balloon release!  Craig wrote a little note on one of the balloons and we decided to release them…emotional moment to end it all, and another way to include his parents into the celebration.

 

As you can see from this post our little MVP is loved so much already!  We are blessed to be surrounded by such supportive, wonderful people.  Thank you all who came to shower us with love!

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❤ Crystal

Photo Credit to Cole and McKinley
The Daily Post Photo Challenge: Temporary

My Thankful 30

This Friday we completed the second full week back to school which went fabulous, but it ended in a meeting that left me out of sorts.  I allowed myself to become bitter and I brought the negativity home with me, which is never fun for my family.

Gratitude

I decided I needed to put a stop to it and take a moment to reflect on the more popular moments of the week that I’m thankful for.  A strategy I recommend for anyone looking to turn their mood around!

  1. Celebrating McKinley’s Birthday…she is officially a teenager!
  2. Hearing Mick’s team (and the opposing team) sing Happy Birthday to her
  3. Soccer, soccer, and more soccer
  4. Cole’s Cross Country Meets
  5. Messages from former students
  6. Continuing to keep up with my blog
  7. Hearing all is healthy at my doctor’s appointment and listening to his heartbeat
  8. Some amazing students…nobody will ever see or understand those little moments that go on inside my classroom
  9. Surprise breakfast sandwich from my amazing co-worker
  10. Surprising one of our co-workers with a thoughtful gift who is a first time grandfather
  11. Everyone being able to SEE the baby kick…lil guy is active and strong
  12. Hearing my Grandfather on the phone…after his stroke I was unsure if he would recover and he is slowly, but surely making improvements!  He is the most strong, stubborn, fighter I know!
  13. Going through baby names with Craig…always fun…he thinks it’s hilarious when I start yelling the name out like he’s in trouble or he’s about to score a goal…we have to know how it will sound, right?
  14. Apple Crisp with vanilla ice cream in bed…compliments of Craig
  15. Our first daycare tour…a gofundme page is coming soon…haha!
  16. Buying some more maternity clothes…having more options in the morning makes it more likely to have a positive start to the day
  17. Cole playing bass for homecoming
  18. Grandpa licking the container out of the Apple Crisp we brought him…haha
  19. Our first visit to Brighton Farmer’s Market–who doesn’t love live music, fresh food, beautiful weather, food trucks, plants, and holding hands with your man
  20. Snuggling with McKinley while she felt her lil brother kick
  21. Eating some amazing Italian food…Veal Parm is one of my favs!
  22. Cole going to his school dance
  23. Payday $$$$$
  24. A quick chat with a friend I haven’t talked to in a long time
  25. Healthy meals
  26. A man who wakes up early to make my lunch for work in the morning…all because he wants to…he even woke up extra early one morning this week to make egg salad for me
  27. Gramps feeling the baby kick again (to be honest I don’t think he was kicking at the time, but we will just let him believe he felt him)
  28. Receiving my Fabfitfun box…always fun when it comes
  29. The smell of the house as the turkey dinner is cooking
  30. Selling a couple items on Teachers Pay Teachers (who cares if I only made a dollar—still makes me happy)

Just a short list to remember all the wonderful moments from this past week.  Next week will bring even more to be thankful for!

thank you

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Share in a comment:  What are you thankful for from this past week?

 

Crystal

 

 

Top 10 Favorites of Fall

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Is it just me or is apple picking a little overrated? Maybe because we went on what was the hottest day of the year at a scorching 91 degrees (unusual weather for us here in Rochester), but I keep wondering what on earth people become hyped up for to go pick apples.

apple picking funny

We had fun though…laughed the entire wagon ride, wondering if the jolting might initiate an early labor, ate cider donuts, drank cold cider (it was way too hot to drink anything even slightly warm), munched on popcorn, and bought a ton of apples.

Even though apple picking may not be my favorite fall activity, it is my favorite season of the year…so much that I named my first child Autumn!

 

My Top 10 Favorites of Fall 

10.  Football…which means lots of snacks:  I will admit this wouldn’t have made my list a few years ago, but I have come to enjoy watching football with Craig.  There is usually some sort of dip and/or tasty finger foods involved while watching and who doesn’t love food?  We feast on football days!

9.  Crockpot Meals:  Now that it’s fall I have broken out the crockpot and the fall meals…not only does it make my life so much easier, but everyone enjoys the Chicken and Dumplings (or as we call it: “Chicken Dump”), Pot Pie Soup, Lasagna Soup, Pulled Pork, Pot Roast…ohhh…I could go on!  There is just something satisfying about dinner being ready when we come home.

8.  Leaves/the colors:  Maybe I fell in love with leaves in kindergarten when we all had to bring one in and put it under our paper and color over it…ahhhh…awesomeness right there!  I’m the one in search for that perfect leaf no matter where we go.

7. Boots:  They can be tall, short, furry, leather, brown, gray, blue, black…I love boots and this is the boot season!  This reminds me I need a new pair…recommendations anyone?

6.  Pumpkins/Pumpkin Pie:  Whether the pumpkins are decorating the yard or pureed in a pie I love them!  Now the carving of the pumpkins I will admit I do try and scam out of every year…this year I’m thinking we need to try painting them.  Hmmm…

5.  Oversized Sweaters and warm blankets:  I’m all about the cozy comfort of an oversized sweater or a toasty blanket!

4.  Apple Cider/Apple Cider Donuts:  Apple Cider either hot or cold is amazing!  I order the hot apple cider from Tim Hortons with whipped cream on top and bottom and it is delicious!  Apple cider donuts are little circle shaped fall treats that are just as delicious, but a little harder to find fresh.

3.  Apple Crisp:  Who doesn’t love freshly made, warm,  apple crisp with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream?

2.    The weather:  The fall weather is perfect!  It isn’t too hot or too cold, and if it is dressing in layers quickly solves that.

1.   Fall Family Photos:  This is my most favorite fall activity ever!  I started years ago with just snapping a quick photo each year of the kids in the leaves in the backyard, but it has evolved into a big event where we go to a local park to take a ton!  They are always an adventure!

 fall

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Share in a comment:  What is your favorite thing about fall?

Crystal

 

 

 

 

My Top 10 Unexciting Moments of Pregnancy

After writing the Top 10 Best Parts About Being Pregnant I thought it might be fun to think about the struggles.  I am beyond thankful to be pregnant, but there are some moments that can cause some frustration.  This is what I came up with…

10. Doctor Appointments:  I feel like I’ve been to the doctor’s more than Wegmans lately.  I was going more than usual so he could monitor me a little closer, but it is worth it to make sure everything is in order and baby is healthy.

9.  Zika Virus:  We wanted to do some traveling over the summer, but Doc said no due to the risk of the Zika Virus.  I’ll usually go against doctor orders without batting an eyelash, but I’m not going to put my child at risk—maybe we will plan a weekend babymoon close to home instead.

8.  Maternity Clothes:  Ok, it has been years since my previous pregnancies and maternity clothes have improved quite a bit, but they still have a long way to go!  What woman wants to look like they are wearing a tablecloth?  Enough with the stripes! And what is with all the bows and ties—just because I have a child growing inside of me does not mean I want to look like one!

7.  Weight Comments:  I have never had so many people feel like its appropriate to comment about my weight!  A “family member” recently felt it was appropriate to address me by saying, “what’s up fatty” (just one of the flavorful comments she made).  For one I’m not fat, way thinner than her (not to mention I have a full mouth of my own teeth), and I’ve only gained nine pounds according to my last doc appointment.

6. People asking when the wedding is:  If we had a dollar for every time we have been asked this we could have a destination wedding and pay for our entire family to come!  Just because we are expecting does not mean I’ll be waddling down the isle!

5. Shaving, clipping toe nails…anything involving bending over:  Things are difficult to reach, see, and it can be incredibly frustrating.

4. Sleep: I toss and turn quite a bit!  When a comfortable position is finally found it only lasts just a short time.  I’m too hot!  No, too cold…where did I kick that blanket?  Where is the Pepcid?  Ohhhh…not a leg cramp….not now!  That can’t be my alarm—I just fell asleep!

3. Hearing “you’re crazy” or “are you sure you want another?”:  I’ve never been one to walk to the beat of the drum society is playing…and I don’t intend to now.  I’m fully aware that I am in a sense “starting over” as some say, but just because you are afraid to live your life, doesn’t mean I am.  People have called me crazy for all kinds of decisions—being a teen mom, going back to college, wanting to teach students with disabilities, wanting to teach in the school I’m in…all of which make me incredibly happy and proud, so how is that crazy?

2. FatigueAt the end of the work day I am spent!  I’m on my feet the majority of the day, then it’s picking up from practices, cooking dinner, cleaning up the house, and I do try and make time in there for a nap or at least some couch time with my favorite blanket!

1. Mood swings:  These hit me off guard (pun intended)!  They have finally seemed to level out, but they were quite intense earlier in my pregnancy.  One second I was fine, next crying over a nothing, and then the temper would come out of nowhere!  I’ve never experienced such a range all at once—my family deserves an award for putting up with me through them!

mood

Share in a comment:  What is/was your least favorite part about being pregnant?

Crystal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Fav: Rick’s Recycled Books

My weekly favorite is a small hidden gem here in Rochester, New York…Rick’s Recycled Books.  I have been going to this bookstore for years and always walk out with a stack even though I have several unread ones at home!  Bookstores are my weakness…especially used bookstores.

I have to admit my boyfriend planned our weekend and surprised me with a visit to Rick’s…yes, he is pretty amazing!  This isn’t a place to sit on your laptop and sip your coffee, but it is a lovely hole in the wall, bursting with an assortment of books begging to be chosen.  Most are $1-$4 and even though it looks like chaos he has a method to the madness.  I think of it as the House of Guitars for books.

On this trip my boyfriend was able to find a couple books he wanted to read, and then realized one is autographed!

 

If you are looking for something to do make a stop at this lovely treasure on Monroe Ave.

Rick’s Recycled Books

737 Monroe Avenue

Rochester, New York  14607

Share in a comment:  What is the last book you read?  What are you currently reading?

Crystal

Reading well is one of the great pleasures that solitude can afford you. ~Harold Bloom

Simple & Healthy Banana Oat Pancakes

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Are you looking to change your eating habits?  In my attempt to eat healthier this is my go-to weekend breakfast.  This recipe is simple to make and they come out tasting yummmmayyyy—even better than other pancake recipes.  They are quite filling too!  You must give these a try and let me know what you think!

Banana Oat Pancakes

Ingredients:

2 bananas

2 eggs

1/2 cup rolled oats

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

pinch of salt

 

Directions:

Mix everything in a blender, let the batter sit for a about 20-30 minutes, and then cook.  I like them with strawberries on top or real maple syrup!  Enjoy!

What do you like on your pancakes??

Crystal

Inspired by The Daily Post one-word prompt: “Simple”

 

Weekly Fav: Erin Condren Planner

This week I received my custom made planner from Erin Condren.  This planner is amazing and will be useful to keep me on track and goal focused.  The cover is filled with favorite photos, so positive vibes are always near!

planner-blog-collage

My favs:

  • Did I mention the cover?  It can be customized several ways, but this one was for me as I LOVE pictures…this is my favorite feature of the planner and that sets it apart from others I found.
  • I’m a teacher, so planning is essential to my organization and success in the classroom–there is a monthly break down as well as daily which I love!
  • I will also be keeping track of my blogging goals, prompts, challenges, and topics using this new handy dandy planner
  • I can also use it as a gratitude journal, bullet journal…
  • Perfect size…not too big, not too small
  • Color schemes available
  • Positive words throughout the planner
  • Pocket in back
  • Pouch it came with to put pens/notepad/stickers in (I did find another one I liked better, so decided not to use this)
  • Little random act of kindness cards

My not so favs:

  • The ruler that was attached to it broke when trying to remove it…I probably would have never used it anyway (pictured in top left photo)
  • Ordering it was a nightmare!  The website was incredibly glitchy and it took me a couple few hours to load and arrange all the photos
  • It is a bit pricey at $55.00 +9.95 shipping

Click here to sign up for a discount code to be emailed to you and begin to organize your life and focus on your goals!

20170117_172448.jpgI purchased a cute little pouch (Jo-Ann Fabrics) to keep pens, pencils, and stickers that I will be using with it.  I decided to use the Paper Mate pens in tropical vacation colors because they are no-bleed and I love the colors!

If you are trying to organize your life and crush goals I suggest purchasing an Erin Condren planner to use as a tool to help you on that journey!

Comment:  Share a comment how you keep organized.  Do you use a planner?  Any tips for me? 

*hugs*

Crystal