35 weeks: Still rockin’ and rollin’

I wrote this morning on Twitter that I no longer feel human. That I feel like an incubator glued to a couch being fed Cheez Its as fuel.

I think that accurately sums up the last month of pregnancy. It’s just not fun. Your brain stops working, everything is beginning to swell and hurt and your uterus thinks it’s fun to randomly contract here and there. Because of the excruciating heartburn, there are like six things you can eat without burping lava.

It’s a miracle that I’ve got makeup on in this photo of my 35th week. My hair is even done. I am wearing a bra.


We had a little bit of drama a few weeks ago with the pregnancy. I am currently classified as high risk for some issues, and so every week I go in and have a few tests done on the baby to check that he’s growing well and is healthy.

Well, during one of these tests, the baby was terribly uncooperative and decided to take a nap. Not just a light snooze, mind you, but one of those mouth-open, deep-sleep on the couch naps you take during the first trimester. Nothing would wake him up, no amount of buzzing or shaking would get him to respond.

So the doctor stamped a big ol’ FAIL on our test results and sent us up to Labor and Delivery for an afternoon of constant monitoring.

I was kind of in shock, having expected a quick 30-minute visit first thing in the morning. My phone wasn’t charged, I hadn’t eaten breakfast, and I had other plans.

But, nope, we got into an actual labor and delivery room, had to put on a gown and get into bed and get strapped with heartbeat and contraction monitors. I was so nervous that I put the gown on backward. (In my defense, I was thinking, “Well, they’ll want access to my front so it should open to the front.”)

Check it out:


Whatever, backward or not, my lovely lady lumps and I totally rocked that gown.

Anyway, baby further frustrated people by turning himself so his back was against my back and his hands and feet were in my belly. The monitor couldn’t pick up his heartbeat for more than a few minutes, so we couldn’t get the 20 straight minutes we needed to be released.

I sat there for four hours with my mischievous fetus until the doctor finally decided I’d been tortured enough with hospital food to let me go home with a clean bill of health.

Luckily, we passed our tests last week (I may have visited Starbucks on the way to the appointment) and didn’t have to repeat this procedure, although I’ve been warned that it will most likely happen again, and in the event that he doesn’t cooperate and pass monitoring in the hospital, it’ll be “Happy Birthday Baby.”

Meanwhile, life goes on as usual around the household. Hubs is still working lots of hours and is so very much my hero lately. He takes care of so many things that I normally do and to show him my appreciation, I planned an afternoon of fun this weekend at a traveling music exhibit.

My husband is a music geek of the highest caliber. His iTunes collection is massive, we have all kinds of noise-making apps and gear and I’m often treated to long lessons on music history, theory and various performance critiques. (Well, it could be worse, he could be addicted to baseball too. Oh wait…)

Anyway, Union Station in Kansas City is serving as the first stop for a traveling exhibit called The Science of Rock. The exhibit is extremely hands-on and a blast for all ages and levels of musical experience.

Along with a couple of our friends, we marveled at the displays, played with the instruments and laughed as Monkey made it his personal mission to try on every pair of headphones in the place.

On the way out, we had to do some train watching, of course.

SoR collage 1

soR collage 2

sor collage 3

If you’re in the area and would like to visit the exhibit, you can plan your outing here. In addition to the exhibit, Union Station offers many activities perfect for family outings and also serves as a great date night destination.

Linking up with Greta and Sarah for #iPPP this week!


Discovering snow (again)

Stage One: Wut?

snow 2012 6

Stage Two: DAFUQ MOM?!

snow 2012 2

Stage Three: There’s stuff on the glass! I can’t see the street! Hey! HEY!

snow 2012 3

Stage Four: Clean it up. 

snow 2012 4

Stage Five: I not like it, Mama. I not. I hungry. Bacon? Applesauce? 

snow 2012 5

Maybe we’ll go out and actually play in it once it stops blowing around. Or not. Not sounds more fun. 


The nostalgia of clean sheets #iPPP

Growing up, my most and least favorite day was cleaning day. Usually on a Saturday we’d wake up to the sounds of our mom scrubbing either the kitchen or the bathroom. We’d haul our dirty clothes out to the hallway and sort them into piles. We’d dust and vacuum and declutter.

When you’re a kid, cleaning sucks. But there was always something so lovely about resting on the couch under the ceiling fan afterward, surrounded by the smells of Clorox and Pledge. There was a peace to the clean house.

When it came time to strip and remake the beds, my sister and I would play a game with our mother. She would go to spread the new fitted sheet over the mattress and we’d climb underneath before she could get it secured. Then she’d continue to make the bed over us and we’d crawl out one corner, fixing it behind us.

It was silly, really, but it’s one of my favorite memories. The breeze of the snapped sheet over your head, the scent of the detergent it gave off.

The giggles as we lay trapped underneath the bedding for just a moment. The feeling that there wasn’t anything else going on in the world at that moment, just us in the bedroom, being together.

It was all part of the magic of childhood, the magic that fades for awhile but is renewed later when you get to be a parent yourself.

Yesterday I was making the bed when Monkey let out a loud squeal and leapt up onto it. He squirmed his way under the half of the sheet I’d already fitted to the mattress.

“I help,” he insisted.

He wasn’t much help, of course. He’d wrap himself up in the sheets, toss the pillows at me, and yank the comforter away each time I’d try to place it.

I would have gotten exasperated with him, but there was this moment. This moment when he was between the sheets, sitting on top of the fitted one I’d finally gotten tucked in, the flat sheet snapped out above his head, floating down in his face.

His face that was lit up from within with happiness at this moment.

Could he smell it, I wondered? The detergent, would he remember its scent years later? Would the softness of that clean sheet always be a comfort to him?

He had no idea of the bridge to my childhood he’d built in those few seconds, of how quickly I was taken back to those essentially carefree days. How for that moment, there wasn’t anything else going on in the world but us in the bedroom, being together.

Did you photograph a special moment with your phone this week? Link up your post with us!

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In the Kitchen: Copycat 54th Street Gringo Dip

One of my favorite appetizers here in Kansas City is 54th Street’s Gringo Dip – a white cheese dip loaded with veggies and spice. They serve it with chips or waffle fries and it’s so good that when my sister comes to visit, we have to go eat there at least twice.

I’ve been wanting to make it at home for awhile, but never got around to it until the other day when my husband begged me to.

I peeked around the Internet for awhile and found a couple of efforts to replicate the dip, with one sit actually claiming to have the “recipe from the corporate cookbook.”

Haha, yeah. Right.

None of them were exactly what I was envisioned, mostly because they had too many ingredients or were too complicated in prep.

Anyway, this is my version. It’s not authentic, of course, but close, real close. It makes a lot bigger serving that you’d get at the restaurant, so it’s perfect for the upcoming football season. It requires almost no prep, since you buy everything prepackaged. Also, it has veggies. Sneaky, sneaky.

Gringo-ish Dip

1 lb Velveeta Queso Blanco, cubed
1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded
½ cup shredded parmesan
16 oz container pico de gallo
1 cup milk
1 tsp cayenne
10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained

In a saucepan, warm the cheeses, pico, milk and cayenne. Stir well until completely melted.

Add the spinach, taking care to separate the leaves.

Serve with chips, on nachos, or with waffle fries.

*Welcome Pinteresters!  For more tasty noms, try my Chicken Spaghetti. It’s a failproof kid pleaser. Or my Cheesy Chicken and Spinach Lasagna, guaranteed to get as much cheese in your mouth as possible. Wash it all down with my Mama’s Amaretto Slush for a frosty adult treat. Thanks for visiting!