The First Trimester

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With baby boy set to join us in a few weeks, we couldn’t be more excited for life’s next great adventure! With the excitement also comes the memories of my first trimester. Looking back on it; I’d go through it all again and more for the chance to have this blessing. Understanding that there is so much loss and struggle and pain; this post is only meant as a hug and encouragement for those who may experience some of what I did; with hopefully a few helpful tips and tricks to get you through the rough days.

The news

You are keeping one of life’s greatest secrets for twelve weeks or more. You walk around in a cloud of joy that you don’t dare share with the world yet; though all you want to do is shout it from the rooftops. The uncertainties may make you hold off on sharing the news. Those little pains, cramps, changes; are they normal? Is everything ok in there? Is this how I’m supposed to feel? All of it can contribute to some anxiety in the beginning; but share and tell whomever you want, whenever you want. Do what feels right for you and your family.

I thought perhaps I’d told people too early; yet should something have happened in the beginning; those were the exact people I would have confided in and leaned on for support. I wanted these people in my life to know at the moment we were ready to tell them. Do what feels right for you and your family.

Nausea

If your experience goes anything like mine, I was nauseous from week three. Yes we found out that early; I was not even late. I was convinced I was getting the flu but also knew this did not feel like the flu one bit. More like your worst hangover that never gets better. It went downhill from there; vomiting multiple times a day in multiple locations a day. Restaurants, the hair salon, the office, as soon as I got off the bus or on a public street; I left a trail of vomit. I didn’t know a day without throwing up until around 18 weeks or so.

I would avoid my toothbrush if I could because brushing my teeth would trigger a gagging reaction I couldn’t control and I’d end up getting sick again. The tips and tricks I tried helped but nothing fully relived it. Hopefully these work for you! I tried these seabands on my wrists. I wore them for weeks. They did help but again, did not completely take it away. Get them here.

Put crackers by your bed. Eat one or two before even getting out of bed. An empty stomach would trigger me even though the thought of food was awful. Take crackers or other small snacks with you everywhere. The more consistent I was with small snacks throughout the day, the better I felt.

If there is only one food that doesn’t trigger feelings of vomiting… go for it. I could only think about or eat grilled cheese for a couple weeks. You need food and so does that baby. If it happens to only be grilled cheese then so be it.

Exhaustion

Bone tired is an expression I now know I’ve never experienced until pregnancy. The exhaustion truly gets so deep it feels as if its settled into your bones. Making it a full work day and then home to my couch by 6pm felt like I’d run a marathon. Cleaning the house, making dinner, taking the dogs to the park, that all fell to the wayside. And that’s OK. Your body needs the rest. You are making a human! Allow yourself compassion and understanding for you. 

Moments of Sadness

Your hormones are all over the place. There is a lot going on in there! I’ve been told from others that they went through frustration and anger with their partners while pregnant and that those feelings were not par for the course of their relationship. Mine were the opposite of anger but of fear of losing my partner during the pregnancy. I’d be folding the laundry and have an out of the blue thought about something happening to him and the tears would be uncontrollable. Again, allow yourself compassion and understanding for you. 

Is that normal?

Have that nurse hotline phone number handy. They are there for you. You can google all day long and ask every one of your friends with babies, but your body is unique and a medical professional is the appropriate person to consult with questions or concerns. If something seems off or is on your mind, call them. I’ve experienced nothing but friendly, supportive and helpful nursing staff.

There are so many things you could experience during the first trimester. Some of it is beautiful and some of it not so much. And that is ok. You’re not the only one standing on the side of a very busy downtown street, throwing up into a ginormous public trash can. I’ve been there. I did it.

Just remember; do what feels right for you and your family. Try the seabands! Allow yourself compassion and understanding for you. And use that nurse hotline. It is not all pleasant and that is OK.

How was your first trimester? Did you have some of the same experiences?

My Top Travel Items

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Hello! And it is off to Iceland we go! Today we are off on what turned out to be our Babymoon. We booked the trip prior to knowing our little guy was on his way; but what better way to celebrate his impending arrival but with another international trip? As I’m packed and we are off, I figured why not put together a list of my favorite travel items?!

First, my top packing tip: the rolling method! I’m able to fit so much more in my suitcase, which is a lifesaver to this over packer. Now I know over packing isn’t the best tip, but you’d never guess how much I fit in that suitcase with the rolling method.  Also, in this case, my overpacking may be helpful since the weather calls for layers. The rolling method is life changing. Try it!

Now for my Top Travel Items:

  1. Reading material: Lately traveling is the only time I’m able to enjoy a good read. Whether you are killing time on the plane, in the airport, enjoying a cafe or a beachside retreat; a book is a must. I guess I’m old school because I still prefer an actual book to my kindle. My latest read was We Were The Lucky Ones …you can pick it up here:

2. DSLR Camera: While I am no professional photographer by any stretch of the imagination, I still love to play around with my Canon EOS. I enjoy playing around with it and I get better shots than using my phone. Here is the one I use.

3. A Tripod: A tripod is key for any solo traveler wanting to get themselves in a few shots. Set that timer mode and go! It also helps eliminate the shake or blur from photos. Again no professional over here but I find it useful. I use a lightweight, adjustable, easy to pack one like this one.

4. Shoe bags: Have you ever used shoe bags in your suitcase? The husband introduced me to these and I’m never going back. For trips that involve sand, mud, rain or snow, I can zip up my shoes in a separate compartment, pack on top of everything else and keep the muck from getting all over my clothes. I’m all in on these. Plus since I’ve already saved room in my suitcase with the rolling method; these truly add no more bulk at all. We use ones similar to these.

5. Make up: This lipstick. While I don’t normally wear a ton of make up while traveling, a good lip color does wonders. It just makes me feel more put together even when I’m totally not. Even if this is all I manage to swipe on in the morning, I still look awake and ready to explore.  Find it here!

6. Facial Moisturizer. Planes, travel, different water and diets all dry out my skin. When I’m traveling I need an intense moisturizer. My favorite is Kiehls. Nothing keeps my face from drying out quite like it. I have no doubt it will hold up to the wind, rain and potential snow we will see in Iceland. Grab it here:

7. Blanket Scarf: A cozy wrap is a must-pack for me. I freeze on airplanes and miss the days of blankets for all! This also comes in handy if the weather in your destination is cooler than expected; or if the Airbnb is lacking in blankets. A good neutral can be paired with many an outfit. Always keeping those layers in mind 😉

 

What are your top travel items? I’ve got more; just ask! 

 

Wedding Planning Tips

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On a park bench in Bruges, Belgium, my life forever changed. My now husband shocked the heck out of me with a beautiful, simple proposal. There I was thinking he was trying to tell me how much he enjoyed traveling. But at that moment, what he was really getting at was, “Will you marry me”?

The next year was consumed with wedding planning. Wedding planning can be fun but overwhelming at the same time and then not so fun at all. With blogs on blogs of tips, Pinterest and Pinterest perfect weddings, how do you decide on anything? How will you make it reflective of the two of you? Below are some of my favorite unique tips we discovered during our planning process.

(Pin me for later!)

1) Go with your gut. What are you naturally drawn to? Trust it. When you find it, stop looking. Questioning and comparing your decision over and over again will be the thief of the joy you initially found in that decision. If you love it and think its beautiful then go with it!

2) Weddings can be as expensive as you make them. Look for deals and decide where you want to splurge and where you want to save. After looking at wedding bands for my husband in multiple brick and mortar jewelry stores and balking at the costs for a simple, thick, gold classic band; I turned somewhere else. The internet! Blue Nile has so much information on their website on how and what to buy. I felt I knew what I was purchasing and saving some money at the same time. Turns out the husband also turned to Blue Nile for my wedding gift; we are repeat customers!

3) Invite Suites: who knew paper could be so expensive or the options so endless?! In order to save here and have a more personalized experience, I found a friend who was starting her calligraphy business. She had created an invitation suite for someone else and it looked great. I paid her a fee for the digital file and design and then researched local printing companies. Another option is to use Etsy! The same concept; have a suite designed for you and use a local printer. Just click here to head over to Etsy and search the many options for invite suites.

4) One of the most important things to us for our wedding day was that we enjoy it! I know that I am too detail oriented and too much of a planner to allow myself to relax on the actual day; which is why I needed someone to step into my shoes and take charge of the overall management. We didn’t want a family member or a friend essentially working all day and not enjoying themselves; so a wedding day coordinator was a must for us. Look around your area; there are many different packages available that can fit your budget. We used Rosetree Events in Minneapolis and I cannot say enough good things. I didn’t worry about a thing and was able to enjoy every moment. Truly one of the best decisions we made.

5) Make it fun! Yes there are a lot of moving parts and not everything during planning is “fun” but it can be! For example, we wanted donuts instead of cake for dessert. So on the weekends we would go on donut hunts… test out different shops and do a little tasting on our own. Or as a couple we never had a song… so to pick out the first dance song we made appetizers and cocktails and listened to lists and lists of songs. An evening of food, drinks, and music… what could be better?

Hopefully, these tips help your planning.

What is your favorite wedding planning tip? What did you do to make your day reflective of you?

Back to Blogging 2018

Hello friends! It’s been some time since words hit this white space. A lot has changed. You won’t find any more comedy about bad dates. Though you can re-read and reminisce here. And here.

Instead, you may find the joys, laughs, and lessons of marriage.

Because this happened:

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You will still find delectable bites and drinks; perhaps an occasional recipe or two. The love of food doesn’t fade.

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In about five months you may also catch tips and tricks for the new mom or mom to be.

Because this also happened:

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What does remain unwavering is the love of travel and joy of writing. With trips to Paris, Amsterdam, Bruges, and the Philippines; we’ve got a lot to catch up on!

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Ready to join me again? Or for the very first time? 🙂