This blog was started in 2008 when we did IVF for the first time to build our family after 5 1/2 years of infertility. We now have 8 and 2 year old boys (thanks to modern medicine) and we are enjoying our blessed life as parents ♥ In the summer of 2016 we took another huge step and moved across the country from Oklahoma to New York! This blog is about life and everything in between

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Homemade Freezer Garlic Bread

As most of you know I have been cranking out the freezer meals lately in preparation for baby #2 to get here (in 3 weeks!). A lot of them are Italian-themed because that is what I love :) And what goes better with a hot lasagna out of the oven than garlic bread? Yum! I found this recipe here and knew it was perfect for me.

I went to my local grocery and got 3 huge loaves of marked down French bread for 60 cents each.

 I changed it up a little and used margarine instead of butter (all of my butter was frozen). I also used garlic powder (around 2tsp) instead of fresh, and I added basil (about 1tbs).


 I started slicing up the bread and coating each slice with a good layer of garlic butter. Then I layered them on a pan to freeze individually...

I just happened to be cooking spaghetti dinner while I was doing all of this, so I threw three of them in the oven to go with it. Yes they tasted so delicious! I personally thought they were better than premade frozen ones from the store.

 I left them in the freezer for a good 15-20 minutes before I took them out and stacked them nicely into a labeled freezer bag. From there they went into the deep freezer and are ready to go!

I only had time to do 2 of the 3 loaves but I got two stuffed gallon freezer bags out of it (minus the three slices we ate). All for less than $2!


Friday, March 20, 2015

36 Week Update

I had my 9 month checkup today! We were a little nervous about this one because at our last US a month ago the baby was breech. My doc told me then that if he was still breech at this US then she would want to schedule me for a C-section. Well I had a feeling he would be turned around and I was right! He is head down, measuring at about 6 1/2lbs and doing fabulous! And even better, I am already dilated to 2cm!!!

I got another 3D pic of his face, and that is about all that we could get because he is so big now you can't really tell what you are looking at! All of his fingers and toes are accounted for, and he has chubby cheeks and a button nose just waiting to get kissed. Three weeks from tomorrow is my LAST day of work until I go on maternity leave. I have been picking up extra call and extra shifts to get every little bit of money saved for my time off.

As far as the nursery goes, we have made pretty good progress on that. One big thing I wanted to have done was a ceiling fan installed. That room was the only one that didn't have one, and we had put a little clip-on fan for Brad but I wanted a ceiling fan to cool both boys and to update it a little in there. It was the first time Nick installed one but he did great and it turned out really nice!

Although I am planning on breastfeeding, I have still requested free samples from formula companies. I remember with Brad I got several single-serving packets as well as high value coupons for tubs of formula. I was very glad to have these because my supply starting dwindling around 4 months and we ended up having to start supplementing. Well this time they not only sent me the packets, I also got 4 FULL SIZE tubs of formula for free! All of the expiration dates are good thru the middle of next year so even if I never need them, I could still donate them to someone.

 One of the only good things to come out of the "Affordable" insurance changes is that they now cover breast pumps! I ordered mine online and received it a few days later---absolutely NO cost to me. It is a Medela double electric pump and it is all mine.

We don't have a crib yet but I'm not too worried about it just yet. I plan on keeping baby in the pack n' play in our room at least for the first 6-8wks until he is sleeping mostly thru the night and won't disturb Brad too much. My coworkers are having a baby shower for me on the 29th and I look forward to celebrating with them! I have started prepping my cloth diapers and soon I will start washing all of the 0-3mo clothes that I have so they are ready for use.

The time is passing quickly now, and we are all very excited to welcome a new addition to the family! It is so nice not being all crazy nervous like we were when Bradley came. The second time around is much more chill and we know we survived it once, and can do it again!


Saturday, March 14, 2015

Around the House

 I thought I would share some non-baby/pregnancy things that we have been doing around the Pierce household. First of all, we got a new truck!

It's a 1988 Chevy Blazer in excellent condition. Our Ford Explorer (that we just bought last April to pull our camper) started having transmission issues so we replaced the parts we could afford to and decided to swallow our losses and sell it as-is for half of it's value. Nick decided we were going to get something easier (and cheaper) to work on that would be much more dependable. We actually bought this Blazer from my brother and got a great deal on it!

The hardtop is removable and there is a ton of space inside. It has big tires and a great stereo--we can't wait to take it to the lake this summer! The engine and transmission are super tough so I don't think we'll have any issues with reliability here.

There is plenty of legroom for Brad, and another carseat will fit right in! It's a little hard for me to get into in my current state, but that won't be for much longer!

 I have been keeping my sewing machine busy lately. There are a lot of little projects I want to work on, plus some custom orders! Here is a lab coat I embroidered for a friend's new job:

And if you recall I am switching the boys' room over to robots so I have been busy working on robot accessories. The latest is a valance for each window. The yellow curtains are ones I made 6 years ago when I decorated Brad's nursery in safari animals. They match the robot theme except for the animal I embroidered in the corner of each panel. They will be fine for now, but I will eventually make new panels out of a bright color to match.
We have all been enjoying the beautiful weather here recently and my little one is on Spring break next week so he will be outside as much as he can stand! Here he is sitting on the porch playing with his keyboard...


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

DIY Maternity Pics!

Today I am 35 weeks along (!) and we finally took some maternity pics! Last time I was pregnant I had a friend come over and use my camera, then I edited the photos myself. I was very happy with the results so I knew I wanted to do that again! Professional maternity pictures would of course be wonderful to have, but this single-income family does not have disposable money for that right now! Mine cost $0 (unless I get a few prints made) and you can't beat that!

95% of the poses here are ones I {attempted} to imitate from photography online. There is an endless variety of ideas to choose from but I went with simple yet classic and flattering. I don't really understand the reasoning behind the whole "boudoir" maternity shoots so needless to say I did not do any of those...

I just have a basic Samsung point-and-shoot camera, and for all photo editing I used PicMonkey (which I love!) because it is FREE and very easy to use. Hopefully these will inspire you if you are in a similar situation to take the plunge and go the frugal route with your maternity pictures.

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