March 23rd, 2015
Dewees Island isn’t so secret anymore! I’ve been working for DeweesRentals for that past 6 years. Last July, I actually took over the company! It’s been such a blessing. I couldn’t ask for a better “job” in the world! I get to work from home, enjoy raising my child, AND spend time on this private island! Turner has enjoyed every second of growing up a “Dewees Kid” too!
Over the past year, my former boss has worked tirelessly with Yonder Blue Films to create the most amazing video to capture the very essence of Dewees. By golly, she did it! We even had the pleasure of taking part in some of the filming! Turner might become famous from this one day! I couldn’t be more proud of our quiet little island and how the word is getting out more and more!
March 22nd, 2015
I’m here to admit that I have an unhealthy obsession with Target. But how could I not when they have amazing things for $1!? I practically filled Turner’s Easter Basket with the $1 section of Target! Turner doesn’t know the difference and he is just as obsessed as I am. Here’s a quick glance at his basket. The only things I didn’t get from Target were his chocolate covered rice crispy treat, and a Peter Rabbit book from Barnes and Noble.
Turner’s absolute favorite is the bunny ears. The way I tested if I would get them, was if he actually wore them while we walked around Target. Sure enough, he wore them the whole time and then some.
So, there you have it. Our quick little Easter Basket guide! I’m really looking forward to this Easter. Not only is Turner old enough to enjoy it, but I’ll be feeling much better by then!
March 19th, 2015
How far along? 12 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: 5 pounds gained.
Maternity clothes? Not yet.
Best moment this week: Hearing the heartbeat and hearing that Baby is extremely active in there!
Miss Anything? Loving coffee and having energy. It would also be nice to not get queasy by the time nighttime hits! Hopefully it will end soon.
Movement: Not yet!
Food cravings: Not quite craving. But I have a few staples: cheddar cheese, bean burritos, hard boiled eggs, cottage cheese (I know! But, in my defense, it has an insane amount of protein), and my morning beverage of half iced coffee and half chocolate hazelnut milk (gotta get energy somehow).
Anything making you queasy or sick: I mean, nothing really makes me queasy. I just am. The worst is definitely over. I had one rough day this week but other than that I’ve been pretty good! I even started working out again.
Have you started to show yet: Yea, I can definitely tell.
Gender: I’ll find within two weeks!!
Labor Signs: Nope.
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Really happy. Especially since I’m starting to feel semi human again. Not 100% but getting there!
Looking forward to: Finding out the gender! My mind is definitely getting the best of me. I need to calm it down, because I’ll be happy either way!
March 15th, 2015
Every month, our group of 8 friends get together for supper club. We rotate the host. Each host is in charge of picking the theme and entree. The other couples are in charge of a drink, side dish or appetizer, and dessert that go with the theme. This month we were the hosts. I chose a Citrus theme because it’s starting to get warm, and I love citrus!
My main course was lemon braised chicken. Here is the original recipe. My update recipe is below. This was for 8 people, so you could definitely cut it in half for a family sized meal.
Along with the chicken, I made lemon poppy seed biscuits (basic buttermilk biscuits but omitted cheese and added zest of 1 lemon and 1 tsp of poppy seeds) and an arugula salad with orange slices, slivered almonds, craisins, and a raspberry vinaigrette. Annie made Smokey Sausage cups with puffed pastry filled with orange marmalade and kielbasa topped with gouda cheese and more orange marmalade (they’re in the back corner of the plated meal).
Kirsten made the cocktail which was grapefruit vodka and seltzer. She garnished with fresh grapefruit slices and gummi rings. For us pregos, we had seltzer with grapefruit juice. It was equally delicious!
And last, but definitely not least, Missy made lemon bars topped with a lemon slice. They were so delicious and a perfect way to end our citrus supper!
Lemon Braised Chicken
- 12 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- zest of 2 lemons
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups chicken stock
- juice of 2 lemons
- 2 Tbsp corn starch
- 2 Tbsp water
- Preheat oven to 300F.
- Pat chicken thighs dry with paper towel
- Heat dutch oven to medium-high heat
- Drizzle chicken thighs with olive oil
- Season skin side with salt, pepper, and lemon zest
- Add chicken to pan in batches, skin side down, and sear on both sides until golden brown (2-3 min per side) Drain excess fat in pan as needed.
- Place seared chicken on a plate to brown remaining chicken.
- Remove all chicken from pan. Lower heat if needed.
- Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Pour in chicken stock and lemon juice, using a wooden spoon to scrape the bits off the bottom of the pan as your pour.
- Bring stock to a boil and reduce to simmer.
- Combine cornstarch and water until smooth. Pour into chicken stock and whisk until smooth. Let simmer and thicken for about 5 minutes.
- Place chicken back into the pan and cover with lid.
- Cook in the oven for an hour.
- Remove pan from the oven. Serve warm with gravy and fresh chopped parsley.
- This can be prepared ahead. You can brown the chicken and set aside. While the pan is still hot, stir in garlic and deglaze with the chicken broth and lemon juice. Add in corn starch mixture and simmer to thicken. Set that aside until ready to braise. An hour before dinner, bring broth to a simmer, place the chicken in the pot and cover with lid. Place in oven for an hour and serve warm.
Adapted from Damn Delicious
March 14th, 2015
How far along? 11.5 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: 4 pounds gained.
Maternity clothes? Not yet.
Sleep: I’ve been sleeping well. Every day is different as far as energy level goes. A lot of my sleepiness still comes from the Diglegis I’m taking for morning sickness.
Best moment this week: Discovering a recipe for chocolate cashew milk. I do remember loving chocolate milk during my last pregnancy. I made it the other night, and I actually am able to mix it with a splash of coffee to trick myself into thinking I’m going to get energy!
Miss Anything? Feeling energized, not feeling out of it and sick, being able to work out, wanting food, did I mention COFFEE!?
Movement: Not yet!
Food cravings: I’m not really craving anything. I can handle yogurt, and smoothies. I’m loving cheese and cereal too.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not taking my medicine! I tried going without it again the other night and got sick again. I was really convinced I was over the sickness hump. One more week (I hope)!
Have you started to show yet: I personally think I have.
Labor Signs: Nope.
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Definitely happy. Even though I feel like crap, it’s worth it!
Looking forward to: My appointment next Thursday and feeling well!
March 12th, 2015
We converted Turner over to a twin bed a few weeks ago. Big step! It was so weird not seeing him in his crib! I was a little worried, because I didn’t know what to expect. I asked my mommy friends who have older kids. They all assured me that Turner wouldn’t get out of his bed, and it would be an easy transition. It actually was a pretty easy transition. We kept every other part of his night routine the same. We let him sleep with a book and a toy of his choosing. That sort of motivated him to stay in bed. In the mornings, if he wakes up really early, he’ll get out of bed and play with his toys. If too much time goes by (like when I had bad morning sickness) he’ll start knocking on his door. We seemed to have worked out the kinks now and he loves laying in his bed until we go get him.
It’s still a work in progress, but started planning it around trucks and cars, Turner’s current obsession! We got his bedding from Target and painted a magnetic road on the wall next to his bed so he could play with cars on the wall. I’m excited to finalize his room and share the finished photos in the weeks to come!
1 Twin Mattress- We ordered this on Amazon. I have always loved amazon, but I loved it even more after this purchase. $150, and BOOM, this mattress showed up shrink wrapped on my porch a few days later. We opened it up and were shocked at the quality of this mattress! It was really impressive.
2 Magnetic Primer- We went with a cars/trucks theme for Turner’s room, because he’s obsessed. I used this magnetic paint to paint a street on the wall next to his bed. Then I bought some magnets and glued them on the backs of a few of his tiny cars. That way he has his own little racetrack next to his bed!
3 Door Knob Lock- These are a must. I was wracking my brain thinking of ways to keep Turner from getting out of his room if he woke up. We have these on a few other doors around the house. And, it hit me! We put one on the inside of his door so he can’t open the door and get out!
4 Bed Frame- I found this on Ikea for $40! Stew cut a piece of plywood to fit the base of the bed to hold Turner’s mattress up. If you don’t want to go through that, there is a slatted base piece that fits on the bottom. We slapped a coat of paint on there and it looks incredible!
5 Magic Bumpers- I was skeptical about these at first. But they really work! They stick to the mattress really well and don’t slide around. We have one side of Turner’s bed against a wall and then these bumpers surrounding the other side and bottom of his bed.
March 8th, 2015
Well, Turner’s going to be a big brother! I feel like I was just writing these posts when I was pregnant with Turner. I’m so excited to be doing it again!
The morning sickness started around week 5. But it wasn’t bad! I was a little nauseous in the mornings and then within an hour or so of being awake, I’d feel great! I was naive enough to believe that it was as bad as I would get.
Week 6 hit me hard. I woke up Sunday morning as if I had come down with a terrible mix of the flu-slash-worst-hangover-of-my-life, with a touch of the room spins. Ugh. I didn’t get out of bed ALL day and clutched my garbage can close to my face. Thank God Stew was home to take care of Turner! My mom had to come over the next three days to take care of Turner starting at 7am until about nap-time, which is when I could finally stand up. After three days of suffering, I called the birth center, because surely they had made a new discovery to treat morning sickness in the past 3 years!? My nurse put two bottles of Diclegis at the front desk for my step-dad to pick up and send home from work with Stew. That helped tremendously! It took the nausea edge off, but left me completely exhausted and still incapable of getting out of bed until about 7:30. But somehow I got through several more weeks of sickness.
Some days were worse than others. I feel like I slept the past six weeks away. Basically, our days looked like this: Turner woke up around 6, Stew brought him downstairs with him while he got ready for work. Then he brought him back upstairs with an arsenal of cheerios to keep Turner occupied. Turner played in our room or his room. But for the most part, he stood next to my face pretending to talk (and by talk I mean scream) in the phone “HEWOO?? NOO?? YEA!! YEA!!” This went on until about 7:30 or 8 when we would transition downstairs. I’d struggle to make Turner breakfast. Then he’d play while I laid on the couch until it was time to bring him upstairs for a nap. I slept while he slept. Usually, after he woke up, I would be well enough that I could sit up while he played and somewhat interact with him. Guilty doesn’t begin to describe the way I felt. But he was so well behaved that I just couldn’t help but thank my lucky stars.
I actually stopped taking Diclegis last week, thinking I was over the worst. A day went by and I actually started throwing up!! I was not that bad with Turner (Girl??). So I’m back on the medicine and I’ll suffer through the exhaustion. It’s better than puking my brains out. I keep telling myself it’s temporary and so worth it!
How far along? 10.5 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: 2 pounds gained.
Maternity clothes? Nope! Enjoying my regular clothes while it lasts. Although, lululemon is usually my go-to regardless of pregnancy!
Sleep: I’ve been exhausted. My medicine makes me feel like I’m constantly hopped up on Benadryl or something. I sleep well at night, except for my several trips to the bathroom.
Best moment this week: We put Turner to bed and he yells towards the monitor “Diss Baby!” So I went upstairs so he could kiss my belly. It was so sweet!
Miss Anything? Having an appetite. Not being nauseous. Being able to work out without almost passing out or throwing up. Not being on medicine. The taste for coffee. Most of those will be better in another week or so. But it’s been a long 6 weeks!
Movement: Not yet. We saw him/her moving around in the ultrasound and the little heart racing away!
Food cravings: Nothing. It’s more like survival. What can I eat to get through my day? Cereal, toast, smoothies. I’m starting to have more of a taste for healthy things but I’m definitely not craving anything yet.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Everything. Just waiting for this phase to be over!
Have you started to show yet: Not quite!
Labor Signs: Nope.
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On.
Happy or Moody most of the time: So happy! I’ll be even happier when I’m past the morning sickness part!
Looking forward to: Feeling good and having an appetite!
March 4th, 2015
I don’t know about you, but I’ve had the same lip glosses piling up in the bottom of my purse since high school. For some reason, I get new beauty products and can’t seem to get rid of the old! Not today, friends! In honor of the warmer weather, I gave my beauty products a makeover! I threw out the things that have been collecting dust and organized my every-day products! I was inspired to share my favorite products and how I store them for easy use! So, here goes…
Redken Diamond Oil Shampoo and Conditioner: I have noticed a big change since I switched over to Redken. My sister in law always swore by these products, but I didn’t want to spend the money. To save money, I buy the bulk size and just refill my small bottles as needed. After having Turner, my hair completely changed! It used to dry pin straight and I didn’t have to do a darn thing to it! Now, it’s wavy in some places and straight in others. I have to blow dry it with straightening serum so it looks straight! I noticed that my hair was much silkier and smoother after using Redken. I can even let it air dry and scrunch it, and I get that beachy look.
Philosophy Purity Mask: I recently updated some of my beauty products to include a few Philosophy products. Again, pricey, but they last forever! This face mask is amazing. It feels exactly like the products they use at the spa. And it has a nice soft clean scent too. It’s gentle enough to use every day. But I’ll alternate between that and my regular old neutrogena wash.
Philosophy Take A Deep Breath Oil-free Moisturizer This moisturizer is light and clean feeling. I have a weird thing about stuff on my face. I feel like it’s clogging my pores. But this is so light that you don’t feel like you’re wearing anything at all!
L’oreal Voluminous Mascara This is a great go-to mascara. It’s inexpensive and works really well!
L’oreal Lineur Intense I really like the liquid eye-liners. This one you have to shake between each use. But I like it because it’s easy to control the tip since it’s felt.
Tarte Tinted Moisturizer As I mentioned before, I HATE the feeling of stuff on my face. So I don’t wear foundation. This is the perfect replacement. I wear it during the winter, but it’s especially awesome during the summer. It’s light enough that you don’t feel like you have makeup caked on or that you’ll sweat it off in about 5 minutes. It looks very natural but just evens your skin tone and gives you that natural glow.
Happy Spring Cleaning! Feel free to share your tricks and tips with me! I can’t get organized enough!
March 1st, 2015
I hesitate as I write this post. I feel like I’m about to give away the best kept secret. Ok…here we go. We have a Southern Seasons (if you’ve never been there, it will change your life) right around the corner from our house. Stew and I took a cooking class there a few weeks back and discovered that the adjoining restaurant, Southerly Restaurant, serves $5 pancakes on Saturday mornings! I mean, you can’t even get a drink from Starbucks for $5 these days!
I took Turner on a mommy and son date, about 6 weeks ago, to check it out! Best. Pancakes. Ever. We’ve been going every Saturday since. You get three giant fluffy pancakes with a side of crispy bacon. They have plain, blueberry, or their weekly special. We usually split the blueberry pancakes. Stew has been working on Saturdays for the past few weeks, so he’s missed out on this epic discovery. Yesterday, however, he was finally able to join us! And, as usual, Turner was thrilled for our weekly pancake outing!
The special this week was apple cinnamon pancakes. Perfect! We started with a bowl of fresh berries to hold us over.
Then, Turner and I did some coloring while we counted the minutes until our pancakes arrived.
Can you believe this costs $5!?
Turner started rocking in his chair shouting “PANTATES” as I quickly tried to cut his up. This kid has become obsessed. He doesn’t know whether a fork or his hand will get the job done faster, so he uses both.
What a fun tradition we started! We all look forward to Saturdays, if for nothing else than our $5 pancakes!
February 27th, 2015
I adore granola. I love trying all different kinds. Recently, I bought a ginger granola from Whole Foods. It was so delicious that I thought I’d try to create my own version. It tastes just like it, maybe even better! This would even be a great basic granola recipe if you left the ginger out too! Hope you like it!
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil
- 4 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups quick cooking oats
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup pumpkin spice (or regular) pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup coconut flakes
- 2 tsp powdered ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- pinch of salt
- Preheat oven to 325*F. In a small bowl, combine the vanilla, coconut oil, and condensed milk. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.
- Pour in the wet ingredients and mix on low until all of the granola is coated evenly.
- Spread evenly on a sheet pan.
- Bake for 25 minutes, flipping halfway. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.