August 1, 2018

Mid-Week Coffee Date

Hi friends. Happy August! I'm happy to see July behind me. Last month was brutal. I took on some extra projects at work and with my ever-growing pre-baby to-do list, just felt like I didn't have time for anything. It doesn't help that I'm super unmotivated to do much of anything these days. I blame pregnancy, but I'm pushing through. I haven't had the chance to post since my big announcement so I thought I'd ease back in with a coffee date and fill you in on what I've been up to!


If we were having coffee, I would be drinking Mommee Coffee. I found this stuff on Amazon and love it. I'm not a coffee snob but this is really tasty coffee! It's low acid, quarter caf coffee (also comes in half-caf and 3/4-caf) which is perfect for a soon-to-be mama who is limiting her caffeine intake but can't drink regular coffee because pregnancy heartburn is real.

If we were having coffee, here's what I'd share:

I'm officially in my 3rd trimester! I shared a little bit about our experience going through pregnancy loss in my last post so this feels like a huge milestone. I'm feeling surprisingly good at this point, if not a little run down but everything is looking good.

I have a mile-long to-do list of stuff I want to get done around the house before the baby comes and surprisingly, most of it has nothing to do with the baby. The list is things like...painting the laundry room, reorganizing the pantry, and hanging our bedroom curtains. It feels a little overwhelming and I wish I could take a week off to just work on house projects but unfortunately, I need to save that time for maternity leave.

I miss running. I haven't run a single mile in 2018 and I was fine with it until very recently. I always wanted to be someone who ran through my pregnancy but with my history, honestly, I was just too scared to run. I lived in a bubble my first trimester and I know that that's what I needed to do for my own well-being. I didn't feel well enough to even attempt to run until I was close to 20 weeks and by that point, I had a sizeable baby bump that I wasn't used to running with and I didn't like running the few times I tried to get out there. I hope that my return to running isn't impossible after being out of the game for a full year but I have every intention of running again as soon as I feel up to it and am cleared by my doctor!

I've finally gotten out of the reading rut I've been in all year. I'm 11 books behind on my Goodreads challenge (which I had actually set low this year) but I'm finally back to reading every day. Everyone keeps telling me I'll have tons of time to read on maternity leave so maybe I'll be able to catch up. Right now, I'm reading "Paris to the Moon" by Adam Gopnik, a New Yorker writer who moved to Paris with his 8-month-old son in the 90s. Let me tell you - if this doesn't set my wannabe expat wheels turning, I don't know what does!

I'm working on my recap of our amazing trip to Lisbon and will have those posts up next week! But I can tell you right now, Lisbon was an amazing choice for a babymoon...for a lot of unexpected reasons!

To all of you who commented on my post, thank you, I'll be responding soon now that I'm out of a busy July!


What would you share over coffee?
What's your coffee shop drink of choice?

July 6, 2018

We're Gonna Need Another Passport...

There's more than one reason I've been MIA on my blog lately.


The Pilot and I are expecting a baby!  

For a long time, I wasn't sure if I was going to write this post but ultimately, I felt like I couldn't leave it off of my blog. I've had this blog for 8 years and it's a huge part of my life. Sure, I haven't posted much in the last year or so but for those of you who still read, I want to share our news, and outside of that, this blog has been a chronicle of my life since graduating from college and it feels like a missed opportunity to not write about something as big as this!


The thing is, it took a long time for me to feel comfortable sharing this news. We didn't even tell our families until after my 16th week. 

Because this isn't my first pregnancy. The Pilot and I had the hardest year of our lives dealing with unexplained pregnancy loss and doctors who were so dismissive and flippant, it set my head into a spin. We also dealt with a lot of people who had no idea how to respond to something like pregnancy loss and said all the wrong things.

"Everything happens for a reason."
"It's all part of God's plan."
"At least you know you can get pregnant."
"This is probably for the best...there was probably something wrong with you baby."
"Now when you do have a baby, you know you'll be ready for it."

It was hard and I just couldn't take these comments in stride. My hormones were out of control and I was grieving and I really needed people to just tell me they were sorry and be there for me, not try to justify something that seemed so unjustifiable. Instead, with each passing comment, I crawled deeper and deeper into a hole until one day, I started to really worry about myself. 

But I got help. I found a therapist who finally made me feel like I had a right to feel the way I felt. I found friends who were open to listening to me and who made an effort to see how I was doing and I finally got to a place where I wasn't terrified to get pregnant again and, when I did get a positive pregnancy test, I didn't cry myself to sleep out of fear, I smiled a little bit and said, well, let's take this one day at a time. 

And here we are, 25 weeks later. I'm finally sharing the news and planning a nursery and thinking about buying cute hooded bathrobes and onesies and things for our little one and I'm finally, finally over the moon excited about having a baby. 

June 15, 2018

A Late Winter Getaway to Oahu

Anyone who knows me well knows that I loathe winter. I don't like anything about the season. This winter, I found myself questioning why on earth I not only still live in the Northeast but bought a house there! 

Compared with the last two winters, this one was nothing. We had about 5 days of temperatures below 10 degrees as opposed to entire months but it was just too much. When March rolled around and the forecast didn't call for a single nice day, I started going crazy...and then Carolann told me I should come to Hawaii and 10 days later, I was on a plane.


Everyone I know who goes to Hawaii goes to Maui. I've only been to Oahu but I highly recommend it! Hawaii is a long flight from the East Coast and it's nice to land in Honolulu and not have to get on another plane! While I would love to visit Maui someday, I'm perfectly content to keep returning to Oahu as long as Carolann is living there! 

My only agenda for this second trip to Hawaii was to soak up as much sun as possible and revisit the farm cafe. Carolann was more than happy to oblige on both accounts. As soon as I landed and got to her place, we made our way to the beach. I was in heaven. 80 and sunny? This was so much better than 38 and raining.


The flight to Hawaii isn't terrible but the time difference is tough. After roughly 11 hours of flight time, you land in the middle of the afternoon, 6 hours earlier than the time it is back home. I didn't last too long my first day but I was so happy to be on the beach.

The next morning, I was up before the sunrise. Carolann woke up shortly after me and we sat on her lanai drinking coffee with condensed milk and catching up...I was definitely on vacation!


We made a game plan for the day to head up to the North Shore to visit Waimea Falls and the Farm Cafe. We had gone to Waimea Falls when I last went to Oahu and I loved it! Although this time around, the water was ICE cold!


Carolann first introduced me to the Kahuku Farm Cafe shortly after she moved to Hawaii when she sent me a box of goodies including their vanilla bean caramel sauce. This stuff is heaven and it's even better poured over ice cream that's melting on top of grilled banana bread. If you ever go to Oahu, this should be one of the top things on your list. It's a little farm on the side of the road but the food is unbelievable and you can bring home some of their homemade goodies like lilikoi butter, pineapple papaya sauce, and that vanilla bean caramel sauce I'm talking about.


One thing I should tell you about Hawaii is that if you're planning a trip there and eyeing the weather forecast ahead of time, don't be alarmed if all you see is rain. It rained every day that I was in Hawaii but Oahu is a big island with a mountain right in the middle and, as Carolann so accurately pointed out, it's always sunny somewhere on the island! 

In search of the sun, we spent the next day in Honolulu on Waikiki Beach. It was still on the cloudy side but I didn't mind since I could still sit by the beach with a book and indulge in ice cream...which I did on this trip more times than I'm comfortable admitting!


Feeling the need to work off all of the ice cream I'd been eating, Carolann and I were up early the next morning to hike the Makapu'u Lighthouse Trail, a steep, but well-paved hike that's prime for whale watching and stunning views! It was a great hike and I loved watching the last of the whales migrating for the season!



After our hike, we brunched at and then whiled away the rain at the local bookstore where I bought so many books, I had to ship them home! (Two months later, they're still in the box on the floor of my dining room because of the saga we've dealt with my home office, but that's a story for another day.).


My last few days in Hawaii were all about beach time...we went back to Waikiki (the Hilton Hawaiian Village is awesome just to walk through!), trekked to Ko Alina (my favorite of the beaches), and made a detour to Disney's Aulani.


This trip was everything I needed to cure my winter blues. While it wasn't quite as warm when I got back to Baltimore, it definitely wasn't snowing anymore! I think a late March vacation may need to be exactly what I need from now on!

Have you been to Hawaii? What did you think? I hope this post adds Oahu to your wanderlist! 
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