Things I’m Loving and Not Loving

I am a Happy Camper

Zico chocolate coconut water: This stuff is so good. It’s like a watery chocolate milkshake and would be the perfect liquid for a chocolate banana smoothie.

Yoga: I bought the prenatal package of ten classes at Dragonfly yoga, and although I didn’t go as often as I would’ve liked, I have been a couple times recently. It feels good to move like that, and it’s actually somewhat challenging now as an almost 40 week pregnant person. Plus there’s always a decent chance I’ll get to catch up with one of these two friends!  

The Americans: Brody watched this show over his lunch breaks, and now we’ve started watching it at night. We’re only in the first season (thanks Amazon Prime!), but it’s really interesting. 

Baking: Everything with sugar sounds good to me right now. In the past couple weeks, I’ve made banana whole wheat waffles, salted oatmeal white chocolate cookies, flourless peanut butter thumbprint cookies, banana coffee crumb cake, and zucchini bread. I’ll share all the links on my next food post.

My family: I love my husband and daughter so much, and as Brody pointed out yesterday as we walked around the Capitol Square, we have such a good life. I probably felt even more sentimental yesterday because a) It was our seven year anniversary, b) I’m pregnant, and c) Brunch may have been our last meal out at a restaurant as a family of three.  

Friday mom and baby play group: What would I do without these ladies?!?! They’ve been a source of support, laughs, food, fun and so much more for me (and Finley) over the last year. 

Relaxing during Finley’s nap: I’m typing this post as I lie in bed. While I did a few things right when she went down, such as laundry and the dishes, I’ve been trying to put my legs up to relieve the immense amount of pressure that exists down there. Baby Girl’s head is LOW.

I Could Do Without

Maternity clothes and my compression wear: I know I’ve moaned and groaned about this already, but I can’t wait to wear normal clothes again. I’m tempted to sell or donate (to a friend or Goodwill) all of my maternity clothes as soon as possible. 

Frequent night wakings: After spending a couple hours lying on one side of my body, my bottom hip starts to ache. Flipping to the other side takes a decent amount of effort, and unfortunately, often wakes Brody up. I know, I know…I’ll be getting up a lot with a newborn, and this is just preparing me for that….

Rain: We got a ton of rain last week, which was great for the grass, trees and plants, but not as much fun for a toddler who always wants to go outside. This week looks beautiful though, and even if I spend it in the hospital (maybe Baby H will come early?), Finley will enjoy it with my mom and/or Brody.

And for fun…Things Finley is Loving

Buses and trucks: She doesn’t play with trucks or cars much, but she gets so excited to see them drive past. She waves to them and says “Hi bus” and “Bye bus!”. 

Animals: Finley plays with her Little People animals every day. We also talk about animals every day, most likely the ones at the zoo. She likes seeing birds and squirrels outside while on walks or playing at parks.    

 Bacon: Maybe this was only a one time thing, but she housed a plate of bacon at Graze yesterday. Also, the anniversary card Brody got for me has a piece of (paper) bacon on the spring on the inside, and Finley keeps trying to eat it.   

Hope you’re having a nice Monday! And tell me: What are you loving or not loving???

Finley Photo Dump vol. X

  Finley tried grapefruit for the first time. It seemed like she kind of liked it but was shocked by the tartness.

  We go to a free play group in Sun Prairie most Monday mornings. Finley almost always has lots of fun and loves to see her friends (Noah, Ady, Ella and Brooks).

  For a week, she read this information book about the Henry Vilas Zoo in Madison during meals.

  The girl still uses a paci, and it honestly doesn’t concern me one bit. She only gets it to sleep or in the car. 

  New tradition: Popsicles on the stoop after dinner. Finley’s are frozen orange juice.

  Finley spends a decent chunk of her days playing with her animals. They’re mostly Little People ones. 

 This may be hard to see but Finley got a hold of my Vaseline (used as Chapstick at night) and smeared it all over her face. 

  We’ve had a few last extender-nap cuddle sessions lately. It’s been amazing.

  Brody ran a half marathon over Memorial Day weekend. Finley and I were his biggest fans.

  Finley had a zoo date with a buddy. Unfortunately lots of the animals were inside, as it was very close to closing time. They still had fun even if we only saw the giraffes, camels, an alpaca, and two bisons.

Finley will be two years old in less than a month. It’s been an incredible two years and somewhat insane how quickly it has gone by. We love her so much, and she brings so much joy to our life.

Pregnancy Update: 38 Weeks with Baby #2

How far along? Almost 38 weeks!

Gender? Girl.

Baby’s size? The length of a stalk of rhubarb, so 19.5 inches, and about 6.5 lbs.

Movement? Yes, a lot. She’s very low in my pelvis now and punches the inside of my hip bones. I had a dream last night that I could see her hands through my skin as she moved. Weird!

Weight gain? About 25lbs.

Symptoms? Huge belly, some heartburn (it has gotten better recently), varicose veins, lines nigra, and nesting tendencies.

Belly button in or out? Out, and has been for a long time. Will it be somewhat normal again? I doubt it.

Wedding rings on or off? On, which is surprising. When I was pregnant with Finley, I didn’t wear my ring at night because my hands would get puffy. I’ve noticed absolutely no swelling in my hands or feet this time (knock on wood).

Sleep? Meh. I wake up a handful of times throughout the night to roll from one side to the other, which is a production due to the large belly and extra pillow I use between my knees. I also use the bathroom at least twice. All in preparation for life with a newborn. 

Best moment of the week? On Sunday morning, Brody, Finley and I went to the zoo, and it was lots of fun! She went through a brief stage when she was scared of all the animals, but lately, she’s been obsessed with all things animals. She keeps talking about how she wants to show her baby sister the animals at the zoo. We walked around there for over an hour and then grabbed lunch at Pizza Brutta. It was a great morning!


Looking forward to? Brody runs his second half marathon on Sunday, and it’ll be fun to watch him. 

Miss anything? A full glass (or three) of wine, stomach sleeping, not needing to wear compression things, and working out.

Exercise? This has been a big difference between my two pregnancies. When pregnant with Finley, I worked out at least a few times a week and walked the the dogs at the park almost daily. With this one, I chase a toddler around most of the day and sometimes get a short walk in with the whole family before dinner. 

Labor signs? As I mentioned before, Baby Girl dropped about a week and a half ago. At my appointment yesterday, I was not dilated. The Braxton Hicks contractions are happening a lot, but nothing starting in my back and nothing painful. 

My Decision to Attempt a VBAC

Before meeting with the OB who performed my c-section with Finley, I was pretty certain I’d be scheduling a c-section for this baby. It seemed like the right decision for many reasons. And then we met, and a few things changed my (and Brody’s) mind.

1) The risks for complications in each situation are comparable, with the VBAC being slightly safer.

2) Although the percent of success wasn’t great at a modest 62%, when (or if) I go into labor, they’ll be able to give me a more accurate percent of successfully delivering vaginally at that moment. 

3) This was the big one for me: the lifting restriction. For up to six weeks, I wouldn’t be able to lift more than 15 lbs. I wouldn’t be able to hold Finley, put her in her crib for naps, or get her into the car seat. I would be so dependent on other people, and I know it would be hard on me and Finley. 

So, I’m going to give it a go. I know my chances of success are higher if I avoid interventions (Pitocin, epidural, etc.), but unfortunately, if I am overdue by a week, I’ll need to be induced. Hopefully I’ll be able to choose to have my water broken, if it hasn’t already, to get contractions going rather than Pitocin. I don’t know if I’m strong enough to handle labor without an epidural, but maybe without Pitocin, my body will respond differently and I’ll be able to get through them. 

Purchases for Baby H

As the second child, and the second girl, this baby is going to be blessed with lots of hand-me-downs. The seasons match perfectly since they’ll be just under two years apart, and as long as this baby isn’t crazy small or big, we’ll be able to use Finley’s clothes. Plus we still have the infant car seat, Bumbo, swing, bouncer, play mat, and so on. Which is great, and I love that we are getting more use out of these things. 

But, I wanted to give Baby H a few new things, and here’s what we’ve got for her (so far):

-A beautiful nursery: It’s a “forest” theme with bedding from Land of Nod, a stenciled tree by yours truly, an owl mobile from Etsy, a porcelain owl, and a sweet moose clock (thanks Bridget and JP!). 

The tree required some free-handing to touch up the imperfections.

-New shoes: This week I bought her Zutano booties and Freshly Picked moccasins, both for fall and winter. Adorable!

 –Solly Baby Wrap: Even though I have the Baby K’tan and Ergo, I’ve been eyeing this wrap for months. There were lots of good reviews, and it sounded like a more breathable option than the Moby. I bought it in the yellow color and can’t wait to wear Baby!  

This has turned into a long post. If you stick with it, thank you. Maybe the next time I check in it will be with a birth announcement. Probably not though. That’s okay. I can wait.

Meal Plan [5/17/2015-5/22/2015]

I’ve still been meal planning but have clearly fallen off the “post about it” bandwagon. I’ve also lost my cooking and freezer meal prepping mojo. Instead of nesting in this manner, I find myself doing micro-cleaning (drawers, going through my clothes to bring to Goodwill, bringing vacuum to be cleaned, etc.), making and attending appointments (dentist, vet, etc.) and resting in my bed, often napping. But, back to the food. 

I can’t grocery shop now without meal planning, so although I may not stick to a week’s plan (hello Papa Murphy’s pizza – you’re so easy and convenient), my intentions are there. 

Although this wasn’t part of our meal plan for he week, I made these cookies yesterday to bring to a neighbor’s house, as we were invited over for dinner. They are so so so good. 

Oh, and I made these cinnamon rolls for breakfast yesterday. Thanks to Kimberly for introducing me to this brand!  

It looks like I was into sugar yesterday. Today will be better…maybe. Hopefully. But there are two cinnamon rolls left. And two cookies. And Popsicles. 

Okay, for real. Here’s what I think we’ll be eating this week. Enjoy!

Sunday: leftovers or pulled pork

I cooked a pork butt or shoulder, I forget, in homemade beef bone broth overnight in the garage. Is that wrong? Pork cooking in beef? I’ve used root beer in the past but didn’t have any, and I’ve got lots of various bone broths in the deep freeze taking up space. Anyways, I’ll be freezing a bunch of it, but for what we’ll eat, I mix in BBQ sauce and chopped pickles, jalepenos, and banana peppers. 

Monday: pulled pork and Mediterranean pepper salad

Tuesday: teriyaki meatballs with snow peas and edamame

It calls for chicken, but I almost always use ground turkey. I’ve made this recipe so many times, I can do it without looking at the recipe. It’s a keeper!

Wednesday: enchilada skillet

Thursday: chicken thighs with roasted cauliflower

I made these thighs last week, and Brody and I both gobbled them up. He wasn’t a fan of the sauce – too mustardy – but I liked it…but not enough to make another serving for myself. Basically I’m copying her cooking technique and spices for chicken thighs. Nothing fancy. 

Friday: buffalo chicken pasta

What’s on your meal plan for the week? Do share!

To end, here’s a picture of Finley christening our outdoor patio furniture and table.   

She’s not a messy eater at all. 😜

Finally Friday Facts

1. We have farm fresh eggs! I found a woman on a resale group I’m in on Facebook who lives just outside of Waunakee selling them for $2.40/dozen. I picked up two dozen yesterday and plan on having eggs for breakfast after Finley wakes up. 

2. Finley has to be going through a growth spurt. She’s been eating more than normal, taking 2-3 hour naps every day this week, and been very moody. Sometimes she’s so happy and fun, and at other times she’s throwing a tantrum and insonsolable. I realize this last part is basically the definition of “toddler” but it’s been more dramatic recently. 

3. The freezer is looking good! I’ll do a full update later, but I’ve got eleven dinner items, which each will easily give us two meals. Yesterday I added chicken taco chili and oven baked chicken fajitas to the stash. If you have a favorite freezer meal, send it my way please!

4. Crazylegs is not looking good. I was excited to walk it tomorrow with two friends while pushing Finley in the stroller, but it’s most definitely going to rain. And be cold. And be windy. Yuck! 

5. My thumb nail is almost gone. If you can recall, I slammed my thumb in my car door about two months ago (the day before I broke out in hives from amoxicillan – I was a mess!). Well it died, and the new nail has been growing in. It’s an ugly process, and I’ll spare you photos. Fingers crossed it looks somewhat normal soon because… ⬇️

6. My sister’s wedding is two weeks away! I pick up my bridesmaids dress from the seamstress on Monday; hopefully it fits well and I don’t look ridiculous (not because of the dress, which is beautiful, but because I’m 8 months pregnant). 

7. After two attempts by Brody to buy patio furniture, third times a charm. We can’t wait to sit outside, eat meals, and just relax back there! It should arrive the second week in May.  

8. I’m thinking about buying the Solly Wrap for Baby Girl. Anyone have it? I have an Ergo and K’tan, but this one looks so comfy and easy. I hope to wear this baby a lot more than I did Finley. 

9. Brody and I have two nights out coming up: a birthday dinner for me at The Tempest tomorrow night and a “gala” next weekend. We’ve got to squeeze these in before life is flipped upside down with having a newborn. 

10. This girl – she’s awesome.   

     Have a great Friday and weekend!

Pregnancy Update: 33 Weeks with Baby #2

How far along? 32 weeks, 5 days.

Gender? Girl.

Baby’s size? She’s a pineapple at 4.25 lbs and 17.2 inches. 

Movement? Oh ya. She seems to move the most in the evening, but I notice it throughout the day. Since this will likely be my last pregnancy, I’m enjoying it.

Weight gain? About 17-18 pounds.

Symptoms? Heartburn! Tums are my best friends, and they go with me everywhere. I feel the burn after eating most food but especially citrus, chocolate, tomato-based anything, and spicy things. I also feel it if I’m starting to get hungry, which I assume is my stomach acid preparing for food creeping up. 

Also, I obviously still have varicose and spider veins. I wear some form of compression wear every day, and it has been helping relieve the discomfort.

Belly button in or out? Out. 

Wedding ring on or off? On day and night.

Sleep? I fall asleep easily and have fortunately not been cursed with pregnancy insomnia (knock on wood). I’m up a handful of times throughout the night to roll to the other side or use the bathroom. 

Best moment of the week? The best was also the scariest for a while. My SIL, who had the same due date as me, had her baby on Thursday at 32 weeks. Mom and Baby are both doing well. 

As for non-pregnancy related events, I had my friend’s bridal shower and bachelorette party this past weekend. It was a blast and so fun to spend time with her and my high school friends!   The bridesmaids and the bride (in white) at the bridal shower. Yes, I’m wearing flats but standing on my toes. I’m a shorty and had no business wearing heels.

High school friends!

  We painted pretty trees.


My lovely friend, Susan, had a baby 10 weeks ago. Isn’t she a doll! 

Looking forward to? A quiet weekend at home with Brody and Finley.  

Miss anything? Just the normal stuff: non-maternity clothes, wine, stomach sleeping.

Exercise? Not as much as I’d like, but I’m trying to not get down on myself about it. I know I’ll eventually (hopefully, someday) be able to get back into a good exercise routine and decent running shape.  

Labor signs? Some Braxton Hicks while exercising.

How I Nest: Stock the Freezer

A couple weeks ago, I had the urge to pull Finley’s 0-9 month clothes out of storage, wash everything, and hang it all in Baby’s room. So that’s done. 

Baby’s room is almost complete. We need to install the monitor (we ended up buying the same wifi one we have for Finley), buy and put up a tree stencil, and do a little more decorating with small items. I do have a few more items to purchase (sound machine is on back order, maybe the Solly Wrap, and newborn diapers). 

Otherwise, we are pretty much set. So how does this mama continue to nest? I make food. 

After Finley was born, we survived on quick meals for about three months: frozen ravioli, sausages, Stoeffer’s lasagna, and who knows what else. All I remember is that I rarely cooked. I know that after Baby is born, I’m not going to feel motivated to cook, and even if I am, I may not have the time or energy. Plus, those easy meals aren’t all doable anymore with our more grain-free lifestyle. Enter: freezer meals.

If you’ve followed me for a while, you know I’m in a freezer meal group that meets monthly. From that I’ve accumulated a bunch of recipes I know we like and that freeze well. Otherwise I’ve started bookmarking new recipes and going through ones I’ve already bookmarked which I assume would be fine frozen for a few months.

Even if you’re not preparing for a baby, having meals ready can be so nice for busy weeks or to gift to friends with new babies, sick family members, or new neighbors. 

Here’s what’s in my freezer so far:

Chicken wings (from February’s freezer meal group)

Crockpot sesame honey chicken

Chili chicken, kale and quinoa casserole (I used rice instead of quinoa and didn’t add black beans because I didn’t have any.)

Crockpot Santa Fe chicken

Playgroup granola bars (I used less sugar, coconut oil, and chocolate chips but no raisins.)

Small loaf of Paleo banana bread (The recipe made enough for two small loaves, and we ate one to try. Thanks to Kate for sharing this one on her blog!)

Blueberry muffins (I didn’t make the glaze. Also, Finley and I have tapped into that bag for a couple breakfasts last week. Whoops!)

Taco meat (No recipe other than beef from the 1/4 of a cow we bought this fall and Costco taco seasoning.)

Crockpot cashew chicken (I can’t find the recipe online, but there are tons out there.)

Here’s what I want to prepare still:

Double pumpkin muffins

More Paleo banana bread (link above)

Lots of waffles for Finley (The recipe is from my friend’s cookbook, which I’ll share how to purchase once it’s available.) 

Tomato and lentil soup

Chicken and broccoli rice casserole

Maple nut baked oatmeal

Crockpot short rib tacos 

Chicken tortilla casserole

Do you have any great freezer meals? As you can see, I’ve got lots of chicken ones, so maybe other kinds of meat or vegetarian options. Thanks!

Scenes from the Weekend

We drove up to my mom’s house (formerly our family’s cottage) for the weekend to and had a really nice time with my mom, my sister, and her fiancé. Finley especially enjoyed herself. 

Saturday late morning we went into town to check out Lakewood’s Lioness (I think?) Easter celebration. Finley decorated an egg and made a foam egg magnet.   


After her nap, we spent some time outside doing Finley’s favorite activity: squirrel hunting. She saw a squirrel through the sliding glass doors in the morning and kept wanting to see more. She’d yell “Squirrel! Where are you?” We also played inside with Legos from when my sister and I were kids and all of my sister’s Beanie Babies.  


That night, the Badgers were playing in the Final Four against Kentucky. Brody went to a bar down the road after dinner to watch the end of the Michigan State game, and my sister, her fiance, and I met him after I had put Finley down for the night. Being in a small town bar with lots of fun Badger fans and nice bartenders was a great time! And I was sober (obviously)! Plus they won! Brody was just a little happy.  

We all woke up around 7:30am Sunday morning, and Finley found her Easter basket. Brody was responsible for buying everything and putting it together; he’s so good with stuff like that! 






Finley did figure out how to open the eggs with candy in them, so she consumed quite a bit of sugar in the first couple hours of the morning.  

Later, once my grandpa arrived, we went outside for an Easter egg hunt. My sister brought the eggs for her, and the two of us went out to “hide” them. Finley figured out the game quickly and loved it! After she found the last egg, she kept saying “More!”.    



Thanks to Laura for taking most of the photos in this post!!! I stole them from her FB page. Even though I look horrible in the photo above, I’m glad we got a picture of our little family. 

I hope you had a fun weekend as well!

Finley Update: 21 Months

Some of you may be wondering whats new with my little lady. It’s been forever since I’ve done a post only about her, so why not get one started now while she naps on me (which is quite the sight given my large belly).

Sleeping (naps):

Since September or so, we’ve been down to one nap a day right after lunch. Sometimes that means she’s in her crib at noon, and sometimes it’s 1pm. She sleeps for at least 75 minutes, but occasionally will take a 120 minute or more nap. Lately, because I can and I love it, I’ll bring her into the baby’s nursery and rock her in the glider. She’ll often doze off again for 20-60 minutes.   

Sleeping (night):

Ever since Daylight Savings Time, Finley’s nighttime schedule has been AWE-SOME (please don’t let me jinx myself). She goes to sleep around 7:30/8pm and sleeps until 7am. In the morning, she wakes up and hangs out in her crib for 10-15 minutes, rolling around, playing with her three pacis, and basically waking up. She’s so happy when I go in to get her then – I love it!

Soon after I posted about the tart cherry juice, we stopped giving it to her. It was becoming something forced. Seems like most things, she was in a “phase” and it passed. 

Eating and Drinking:

I can’t recall if I ever mentioned this, but I stopped nursing Finley in September, soon after we moved into our new house. At that point she was only nursing once in the morning and for only a few minutes. Plus, it started to feel “odd” to me, and I couldn’t explain it. Well, a pregnancy test a couple weeks later explained my aversion. I was not meant to be a breastfeeding pregnant mama. Because we weaned so slowly, I never had any problems with engorgement or leaking.

Finley eats three meals and two snacks a day. She eats most fruit, some vegetables, all grain products (bread, waffles, granola bars, pretzels), yogurt, hotdogs and chicken nuggets (we buy Applegate), rice with a little soy sauce, and as a treat, M&Ms. She drinks water throughout the day and whole milk at most meals.   


Social Development:

We stay busy around here! We leave the house every morning for play dates, music class, the museum, play groups, etc. Finley has lots of friends, and while she doesn’t exactly “play” with them yet, she prefers being around other kids to playing by herself.    





In the afternoon we’re more likely to stay at home, whether that means playing inside or outside. Now that the weather is improving, we’ve been going to the park across the street, taking walks, and playing with chalk.   


Physical Development:

At her 18 month appointment, she was still in the 90% for height and weight. She wears mostly 24 month or 2T clothes now, but all the summer clothes I bought for her at the end of last summer are 3T, and they’re going to fit perfectly. 

Finley runs, climbs stairs with help, can almost jump correctly, goes down big slides alone (she’s still fearless), dances, and much more. She’s working on jumping; she can’t quite get both of her feet to leave the ground at the same time. 

Mental Development:

Finley is very clearly going through a language explosion. Every day she is saying new words, and most recently, she’s started putting two words together (Noah’s house and Daddy home). She’s been loving the ABCs, and we sing them to her a lot and play with the foam letters in the bathtub every night.

Like any toddler, Finley has tantrums when frustrated or when things don’t go her way. Typically I can distract her so she forgets about it or I hold her in a hug and sing and sway.

We are trying to mentally prepare Finley for a sibling by talking about the baby, hanging out in her room, reading books about being a big sister, and even watching the Daniel Tiger episodes involving his little sister. She is drawn to babies and always wants to see them and touch them. I know she’ll be a great big sister!

Extra Information:

-We haven’t even attempted any form of potty training and don’t plan on tackling it any time soon. I have hopes of doing the “naked weekend boot camp” in August. For now she’s perfectly content wearing Pampers Baby Dry size 5 and occasionally a cloth diaper.

-Finley still has her paci(s), and like the potty training, I have no plans of changing that. We limit their use to car rides and sleeping. However during her week of sickness, she had it during the day too.  

-We are not a no-tv household, but I do not want Finley sitting for hours watching shows (unless she is sick). She likes Curious George, Daniel Tiger and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. I see her screen time decreasing as it continues to get warmer.  


 -The girl is obsessed with belly buttons…hers and others’.   


That’s our Finley! We love her to pieces and have been having so much fun with her lately.  

My Sister’s Weekend

My sister, Laura, is getting married in May! She asked me to be the maid (ugh, I guess it’s actually matron) of honor, and of course I happily accepted! 

With my sister’s input, I planned a fun-filled bachelorette party day. It was go-go-go from the late morning, and it was so much fun!

We started out enjoying a delicious brunch at Graze for whoever was in town already. Laura had never been, and I knew she (and everyone else) would love it. We had some drinks (a “magic” coffee for me), shared beignets, and filled our bellies. Two of us had the eggs Benedict (including me) and two had the breakfast sandwich.  Me, my mom, Laura, and Laura’s friend Lauren

Back at my house, we met up with more of Laura’s friends, piled into two cars, and drove to Wisconsin Brewing Company in Verona.

We didn’t make the 1pm your like I had planned, but no one seemed to mind. Everyone drank their beers and chatted. We went on the 2pm tour, which was fun. I can’t say I learned anything new, but it was neat to see their relatively new facilities.  Watching the informational video on the tour  

So much beer!

The weather wasn’t the warmest, but we sat outside for a few minutes and talked about what a great spot it’d be to come in the summer.   

Our group – big sign, little people

Next up was a visit to Capital Brewery. I knew the chances of us getting in on the 4pm tour were slim, and sure enough, it was full. Laura didn’t mind though, and the ladies all had a beer in the bar area. I had to drive back with a friend of Laura’s who forgot her card at Wisconsin Brewing Company. We’ve all been there, right? 

After a quick pit stop at home to freshen up and pick up more friends, we made it downtown for dinner at Paisan’s. They don’t take reservations, but as I was hoping, the party room was available for our party of 14 to be seated. Score!

It was a nice dinner, and everyone got a chance to talk about how they know Laura. Laura’s always been such a social person, and it was awesome to have her friends from different stages and parts of her life come together to celebrate the upcoming nuptials. 

Next up was the “craft” portion of the day. For Christmas, I ordered a reclaimed board from The Crafty Project for Brody. I love it in our entryway! While in contact with the owner, Jenny, around the holidays, she mentioned she was going to start hosting craft parties for people to make their own boards. Laura agreed this would be something fun and different (seems like almost everyone has done a Paint Nite already). 

It was held in the Juneberry Market and Studio in Madison, and Jenny does such a lovely job setting up for the event.   Ribbons, fresh flowers, and candles – adorable!

Jenny led the group through the various steps and worked with us individually when needed.

  The bride (wearing a crown Jenny made for her!!!) with two of her bridesmaids

Two of Laura’s friends and Jenny working diligently   Concentrating and maybe thinking how awesome this will look in the baby’s nursery!

We needed up being there for three hours, and everyone was very happy with their boards. Thanks again to Jenny with The Crafty Project!  

Like I said, a fun day! But boy, was I exhausted! And I don’t think it was just because I’m pregnant. 

Sunday was the bridal shower, and my mom helped me a lot with this. For food we had a taco bar with shredded chicken, beef, and all the fixings. For desserts we had brownies, cupcakes, cheesecake bites, and salted brown butter Rice Krispie treats (that I had made for the night before).  Sorry Kailee – I caught you mid-bite.  

Kitchen islands are the best for hosting. 

After lunch, we played a couple games, ate dessert, and watched Laura open gifts.  Sisters 😄

We made Laura put a piece of gum in her mouth with every wrong answer to the Fiancé Quiz game.

I was happy to plan a weekend all about my sister, and I hope she had a great time!