Home Stretch

Posted by casey on November 29, 2009 in Home, Life as I Know It

24weeksAs I am crossing the line into trimester numero tres, the last stretch (minus the actual ability to stretch)  if you will I am most definitely pregnant…and hormonal.  This is when it is a blessing that Colter is only here half of each month right now so that he gets a break from the sudden and irrational bouts of irritation, tears, giggles and yes, nesting.   (Dad, aren’t you excited to come spend a couple weeks with me? :) ) If I hadn’t realized it before, there is absolutely no way I can disguise and or forget the fact that I am pregnant.

Top 20 Reasons you Know I am Knocked Up (by my loving husband…so I should say “with child” and be more appropriate)
(Go ahead and go out of order and go straight to # 17…it is shocking)

1. I ate three Thanksgiving meals on Thanksgiving, took a 3 1/2 hour nap and was still hungry.
2.I opened the pantry, burst into tears at its lack of organization and went into attack mode.  Half of our food got thrown away, boxes were flattened like no other and the shelves now are much better.
3. I am up at 3 a.m. every night for a nice little restroom break at which point I also have to chug a glass of water for my body is telling me it has been in the desert for three days with nothing to hydrate it.
4.Due to number three above, I am up again at 5 a.m. since I chugged a full glass of water and well Baby Kaz decided it was time to get up.
5. I look like a rolly-poly as I try to change sides in bed, lean back or forward to get comfortable in a chair or get up from a sitting position on the floor.
6.The belly button…it is going to pop out any day now, and I assure you I will cry when it happens.  Something about those “outy” belly buttons just freaks me out.
7. 5 minutes on the stationary bike kicked my ass – so much for the 5 miles I used to run
8.I desperately want a hard cardio workout ( I think I crave it more than any food cravings I have had), but from something other than walking around the house or heave forbid I get to a flight of stairs.  Having to stay off your feet doesn’t help much either!
9.Baby Kaz’s cute little kicks are starting to turn into monster drop kicks that I fear soon enough will be making my ribs want to hide in my throat.
10.  There is a project I want to complete in every single room of my home.  Not strange you think?  How about I want it done so badly that it takes every bit of sanity I have to not walk around with a sledge hammer and just get started. :)
11.I have had to tell Colter on more than one occasion. “If I were you I would just stay out of my way and let me go.” as I go off on another random rampage about something while he is so patiently trying to talk me out of it. Bless him.
12. Full waddle.  Side to side…like a penguin…an unbalanced penguin with no center of gravity…who wants to wear its skinny jeans.
13. I need one of those poles with the claw hand so I don’t have to leave everything I drop on the floor.
14. I’ve said it before, but the boobs…they are cantaloupes.  Unfortunately I think they may be watermelons by the time all is said and done.
15. That “glow” I am supposed to have is more of a translucent, “Are you ill because I can see your veins or you must be allergic to the sun?”,  kind of glow.
16. I have become all too familiar with public restrooms.  Target…the mall…grocery…random neighbors (kidding).  Seriously, when someone is tap dancing on your bladder you try and tell yourself you don’t have to go.
17. A stranger came up to me, rubbed my belly and said “Say hi to Grandma Sheryl, I mean Aunt Sheryl.”  Why is that weird? Read it again.  A STRANGER….neither my child’s grandmother or aunt.
18. Depending on the time of day, I may or may not be able to reach my feet to tie my shoes anymore.   Or remove my shoes.  Velcro orthopedics, here I come!
19.  I still think I can do things like say, oh I don’t know, put up a Christmas tree by myself only to be shot down and swiftly reminded about the rolly-poly, no center of gravity, can’t bend over thing.

And Drumroll please……the 20th reason you know I am knocked up is that when my poor husband walks into the room, this is the view of his beautiful wife that he gets….and then chooses to document.


I start hearing the Pussycat Doll’s song “Don’t cha” personally.  Oh come on, you know the song…”Don’t cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me.”  That’s right be jealous, you can’t pay to look that good.


A Sweet Alternative – Carrot Cake

Posted by casey on November 27, 2009 in In The Kitchen, Sweet Treats

Are you tired of pie yet in need of a delicious dessert to accompany all of those leftovers?  Let me suggest, my delicious carrot cake!  The twist is the icing…


Carrot Cake

Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees



1 pound of carrots, peeled

1 ½ cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed

½ cup sugar

1 ¼ cups oil

1 cup walnuts finely chopped

½ cup raisins (optional)



6 Tablespoons unsalted butter (at room temp)

3 cups powdered sugar

¼ cup maple syrup



Grease, flour and line the bottom of two round cake pans with wax paper.

Grate the carrots on a fine shredder.

Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl.

Beat the eggs until blended. Add the sugars, vanilla and oil and mix.

Begin to add the dry ingredients by folding them in well in three batches

Add the carrots, walnuts and raisins.  Fold into the batter.

Pour the batter into the two round cake pans.

Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Let the cake stand in the pan for 10 minutes, then take the layers out of the pans and place on a wire rack to cool completely.


Frosting: Whip the butter and gradually add in the powdered sugar.  When those are combined pour in the syrup.  Add in more syrup and/or powdered sugar to your taste.  If it is too thick you can add a splash of half and half!

Make sure the cake is COMPLETELY cooled before frosting and piecing the layers together.

Bake at 350 Degrees for 40 – 45 Minutes



Posted by casey on November 22, 2009 in Snapshots

Since Baby Kaz has been successfully baking for almost two-thirds of his allotted time, an update for you…









24 weeks and 2 days old….and partying daily.


A Supportive Balance

Posted by casey on November 16, 2009 in Home, Life as I Know It

Whdsc_1087_edited-1ile navigating my college years, I discovered that I was most definitely someone who enjoyed time alone.  Someone who needed time alone.  Time to think, read, just sit etc.  Regardless, it was my time.  Well, when you have so much alone time that you begin to feel almost as though you are in solitary confinement its allure begins to fade only if you lose your focus.  It isn’t because you don’t need alone time, but you forget that you have to allow yourself more than that also.  A tricky balance.

With Colter having to be away from home more than here I adjusted to getting things done by myself and well being alone. Well, I tried to adjust.   I am going to go on a tangent here but just go with it because I really will tie it back in.  When my mother passed away one of the “duties” I took on was listener.  At first, when we were tired, upset, shocked or delirious it was challenging to sit and pay attention to the endless stories close friends wanted to share with you – their memories.  What I quickly came to realize though is that, they needed to grieve too, to connect and this was what they needed.  So I listened, we all learned to listen.

I have learned to be pretty independent.  I deal with things well on my own terms, in my time, on my own.  Sometimes though, that is difficult for friends and those close to you to understand when they want to connect, to help, to show you they love you. 

Recently I took on a bit of  a health hiccup (Baby Kaz and I are fine) and I rolled my shoulders back, sucked it up and used my mind and thoughts to be calm about it.  I knew that the more people I had surrounding me, hovering, checking in etc. the more difficult it would be to lock out the panic, fear or worry. Plus, Colter was gone and I needed to be calm for him – so that when I had to update him I could try to give him a small amount of peace in the fact that I was calm even though he couldn’t get home.   So, I plugged along and checked in where I thought it was necessary. With only a few meltdowns, I was quite proud of  how rational I was.  You say denial, I say rational.  As I worked through it on my own though, I again began to see that it wasn’t fair to those around me to not let them help.  I’m one of those though…you know those people that have a hard time, well, a hard time asking….asking for….help. 

At the time I knew it was best for me to continue, but as my father in law showed up (sent via Colter) I knew that those that love you need to be there not just to ease your worry, but to ease their own, just like with Mom.  Even when it is hard, and even when your brain is organizing the information you are working through, at some point you have to let others in.  They will understand if you need time like I did, but you have to understand that they need to be in the loop with you also.  A tricky balance.


An Easy Calm

Posted by casey on November 11, 2009 in Snapshots


A little bit of calmness I shot this fall that shows why I love this season and how a picture really can calm you.


Waiting on Cankles and Cupcakes

Posted by casey on November 9, 2009 in For Your Funny Bone, Home, Life as I Know It

I swear to you, I wouldn’t lie or exaggerate, not about this….

I seriously think I can feel my stomach stretching while I sit here.  Seriously.


While I sit here trying to focus on anything he continues to kick me, or punch me or head butt me – tough to tell really.
(Already beating me upDid I mention that I think I need to at least get a girl dog before March so I will have one female ally?)

While I sit here trying to organize he is stretching it out probably like he is sitting in a recliner making it impossible to take any sort of satisfying breath.
(Who knew that one, deep breath was too much to ask for?  It’s that learn something new everyday thing…)

While I sit here trying to rest and relax he is desperately working to convince me and my bladder that we (yes I just personified my bladder) have to pee. 
If I was dumb I would believe it, but I know better.

21w2eeksWho am I kidding…I am not sitting here, I am reclining.  Reclining because I can no longer sit straight up.  If I do, he gets angry because I am crushing him.  Fair enough I think.  But then he kicks…punches…or head butts (yes I repeated that because no I still don’t know which it is) because he wants more room.  Fair again.  So I don’t sit.  I recline.

And who said being pregnant isn’t fun?  Kidding, I kid….stop judging me.  I mean, you wouldn’t enjoy a post of sunshine and rainbows information with mushy, lovey details about the joys of baking a baby so I leave those out and save the more cynical, humorous scenarios for you.  Take for example, the first time I misjudged the depth of my new tummy and tried to squeeze between a desk and the door to our school library.  Guess what?  Didn’t fit, instead Baby Kaz met the door.  I have a feeling they are going to become good friends.  Lifelong friends.  The kind of friends that want to pick each other’s noses as kids.  Too far?  Yeah, I thought so too.

Ooooohhhh there is also the time that I forgot a “bella band” (spandex tube top looking deal that makes your pants stay on and makes you feel comfy and safe) and had to borrow a hair tie from one of my sweet highschoolers so I could turn my pants into a contraption of sorts.  Loop the rubber band through the button hole and attach the other end to the button, this making it seem like your pants button.  I assure you, they are about 3 solid inches from actually buttoning but damn it if they don’t still fit in the caboose area and the legs so I am wearing them….even if I have to secure them with a rubber band.

I can’t forget the sympathetic looks from my number one supporters (shout out Em and McD) who dsc_0982_edited-1are also trying hard to not bust out laughing as I attempt to get out of my car. You would think this wouldn’t be difficult.  However, when your door opens facing an incline and you have absolutely ZERO abdominal muscles (because that six-pack you worked so hard for is now split up and located in your esophagus practically) getting out of the car is what I think those looking at the bottom of Everest might feel.  Fine, I exaggerated that time.  But still, tomorrow you better appreciate how swiftly and easily you can plop in and out of our drivers seat.  I bet you don’t even have to yank on the steering wheel with all of your might to push you up.

In case you speak in food, this is for you.  My stomach is a watermelon, my boobs are cantaloupes and right now I’m just grateful that my legs still relatively resemble pretzel sticks as disproportionate as that all is…the day I get cankles is when I will give up and eat only cupcakes.

Because you are supposed to give a positive for each “negative” ( I don’t call the above short stories negatives, just realistic, true life incidents that make us all laugh) I can say that people are really nice to pregnant ladies.  Offering their carts, chairs, and anything else that puts me in the same category as assisting an elderly woman.   So that is flattering…except for the guy who yelled at me because I had 16 items in the express lane which only allowed 15  items.  My pregnant brain can’t count apparently. (Stop it…just because it couldn’t count before doesn’t mean I don’t get to use it as an excuse.)  Seriously though, the other lanes were full of people buying for the next catastrophe, I was one item off and I’m pregnant. Back off.

See how quickly those mood swings come? :) Until next time, I will keep track of the stories and save the sarcasm so that you don’t miss me too much.



Posted by casey on November 2, 2009 in Home, Life as I Know It

To deplete something according to Webster’s means “to decrease seriously or exhaust the supply of” – as in to reduce, drain, or lessen. 

My job has thoroughly depleted me. 
My heart’s capacity to care and try has been exhausted.
My brain is drained. 
My ability to teach a classroom of children has been lessened.

Sad isn’t it?  I wish I could blame it on hormones, or anything related to pregnancy but alas…it just isn’t so.   That being said, I am depleted.  So depleted in fact that I can’t even write…vent…think.  Nope. No can do, no brain cells left for it.  Don’t even want to think about it. Can’t do it.  Must ramble…

So, instead I think about things like this little sugar…in a ladybug costume…and smile.  dsc_0770_edited-1I mean, wouldn’t the world be better if we all looked this cute in a ladybug costume?  Scratch that, I DO NOT want to see Shaq, Richard Simmons or Oprah in a ladybug costume.  But I think you get the point. I mean, check her out.  She isn’t depleted.  (This is when her mother says…”Ha! Isn’t depleted my foot. How about when she is hungry, or tired, or throwing herself on the floor in full tantrum mode?” I respond with “No, not my niece, look at her…ladybug.”)  I should mention that when Cathryn visits, Bo is always at her side like in this picture, sitting and waiting.  Desperately waiting for her to notice him and play.  Staring lovingly willing her to see how badly he wants to protect her and trot along side her.  Bo loves Cathryn.  He might love her more than he loves me, and that my friends, is a lot of love.

dsc_0574_edited-1Ooooo how about this little wobbler and his grown up football???  I mean, this should be a Nike advertisement. “Nike. It is never too soon, to ‘Just Do It’.”  I can see the campaign now.  I should go into advertising.  Just for Nike and this shot though.  He is going to have to wear something besides UT’s burnt orange though…I’ll put that in the contract.   Like Bo, loves Cathryn.  This child LOVES his Uncle Colter.  For an entire weekend he walked around repeating “Uncle….Uncle….Uncle…Uncle…” while point to the stairs, or the ball, or the door or to anything else his heart desired that he knew he could convince his Uncle to do with him. 

You don’t get to see Auntie’s love very much because Auntie is usually behind the camera, catching the love others are getting.  So after Uncle and the dog etc. I come in there and am loved by these non depleted, living life kiddos.

Did you know that you can be adorable while showing your disdain for what isdsc_0618_edited-1happening to you and throwing up the “unsure eyebrows”.  Braiden is very curious about this black thing pointed in his direction making clicking noises.  Maybe he thinks his Auntie has an abnormal growth when she attaches this to her face.  Or maybe because it is hungry.  A common theme I must say.  But this baby is cute when he is depleted…and he has turkey thighs and rolls.  Precious, baby rolls.

20weeksAs far as our own bundle of joy is concerned, things are squared away and he is partying daily.  I think he likes to remind me that he is in there regularly in case I have forgotton.  Trust me, when you are losing the ability to see your feet you don’t forget that you are pregnant.  When you have a rubber band between the button loop and button of your pants to hold them up you don’t forget. (But you do celebrate that they still fit everwhere else!)  When you continue to get stuck in couches or chairs that lean too far back and don’t have proper arm rests to push off of you do not forget you are prego.  When you end up breathing like a 70 year old asthmatic from putting your shoes on and use to be able to run 5 miles briskly and feel fine you do not forget that you are knocked up.  And I said I couldn’t vent. :)  Really though, I feel great and am gearing up for the next few months.  Baby Kaz is still a boy as confirmed at the doctor today.  We got a good glimpse and then he promptly took his hand to cover himself.  The doctor said the boys do that all the time as if they are embarrassed.  I said it looks more to me like they are already learning the one handed scratch.  Boys…always touching themselves. Boys…seeing boobs in the picture on the left instead of baby belly.  Geesh…what have I gotten myself  into?

There you have it, one of the most random, rambling posts I have made….and I did it just for you!  No need to thank me.  When I am feeling more eloquent again I will try a legit post.  A post with more of a point, topic or explanation. Now though, I am taking my depleted brain to bed. Or to the kitchen. Tough choice.


New Tricks

Posted by casey on November 2, 2009 in Snapshots

Cathryn has a new trick.  That’s right, I said trick.

“Hey Cathryn!”









“Cathryn, where is your belly button?”

















As she proudly shows it off and then jams her finger at it.
Don’t you just want to squeeze her?

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