Tuesday, August 22

10 best baby shower gifts

I must be thinking all things baby these days because today I thought I'd share 10 of the best baby shower gifts.


Before having children, baby shower shopping gave me anxiety. I had no idea what to get for the expectant mother and I often found registries overwhelming. Three kids later (one still in the womb) and I absolutely love shopping for mamas to be. I know exactly what I'm going to purchase. My gifts might not be the ones that get ooed and ahed over during the shower, but I walk away knowing the new mama will without a doubt use my new gift.

Friday, August 18

friday favorites: diapers, dresses, and dessert

Friends, I am so happy to see Friday. This here mama is dragging. I guess it could be third trimester fatigue OR quite possibly the 3 to 4 times I am up at night to empty my bladder... Plus, I feel like I've officially reached beached whale status when it comes to rolling over in bed - I swear there is a serious art to the process of getting comfortable while in your 9th month of pregnancy. Okay, enough of that! Let's move on and chat about a few of my favorites from the week!

ONE
My dear sweet co-workers threw me a surprise baby shower on Monday. I had absolutely NO idea it was coming. I was running late to our weekly staff meeting when I opened the door and found a room full of wonderful people, presents, and cake! This lady right here... is blessed beyond all measure.

 

Monday, August 14

boy or girl: 10 old wives' tales


Baby #3 is set to arrive in less than a month and we have no idea whether baby is a boy or a girl. We have chosen this route with all of our children and have loved every minute of the not knowing adventures. You can read more on the reasons why we chose this route in this post.

But for now, let's play a game! I thought it would be fun to list ten old wives' tales and see what the prediction would be based on those. And then, I would love to know what you think as well! Do share your guess in the comments.

Friday, August 11

friday favorites: the kitchen reveal edition

Hellooo Friday! Let's kick off the second Friday in August with a few favorites from the week.

ONE | I am thrilled to report that my kitchen remodel is complete! I love everything about it even if I do not love how long it took. Here are a few photos of how it came together.


Monday, August 7

getting things done and tbb asks

Well Friends, we are at most a little over four weeks away from meeting this little one, and I am so thankful to report that this weekend was an extremely productive one.

Related image

My sweet Mama came down and helped me take on the baby prep list. There's still plenty to do, but the crib is finally in place (no bedding yet) and the minor bathroom overhaul I wanted to do is complete (even if it turned out to be anything but minor).

I mentioned on Friday that our kitchen is being remodeled - the contractors worked on Saturday and we are super close to it being fully functional. When it's complete, I'll share my new cooking domain and my experience with remodeling. There have definitely been some ups and downs.

Friday, August 4

happy friday: wins for the week


Friends, I'm tired. I think the third trimester hit hard this week. Combined with another hectic week at the office, I am simply zapped. And as I look through the photos on my phone to see what might be worth sharing with you on this lovely Friday, I am coming up short. More than short. I have zero photos from the week. Zero.

So, I think I'll approach this Friday Favorites post with a few wins from the week sans photos.

ONE
We've made BIG strides in the potty training department with Little L. As a matter of fact, I'm a hair away from calling him fully trained. He's wearing undies all day long and staying dry. At night, I'm still putting a pull up on him but he's woke up three out of four mornings still dry. So, this weekend we will completely do away with any sort of non-undie. Can I just say how happy I am that I won't have two in diapers at a time?!

Tuesday, August 1

3 reasons to choose gender surprise


As most of you know, we are expecting Baby #3 in a short few weeks. What no one knows, not even myself or my husband, is whether Baby is a boy or girl.

More than seven years ago when we were expecting our first child, we made the decision to wait until Baby arrived to learn whether we'd be blessed with a son or a daughter. We have since taken this approach with all of our children and have absolutely loved it every time. We currently have two boys, and the entire family is anxiously awaiting to see what Baby #3 will be.

If you're currently expecting or hope to be someday in the future, I want to share with you three reasons to choose gender surprise.

Friday, July 28

friday favorites: you might be a nerd if

Happy Friday, Friends - I hope your week has been just lovely! I decided to use a couple of vacation days and commence operation prep for baby. I may or may not have used vacation day number one as a complete Trista Day. So, I better make this short and sweet and get busy prepping. Oh, where to start... Favorites first.

ONE
My oldest and I have started a back to school shopping tradition. I take a half day vacation and we take a glorious trip to Office Depot and then clothes shopping. He is seriously his mother's child. He loves Office Depot as much as I do, and I'm pretty sure we could spend several hours just perusing all of the gadgets, gizmos, and fascinating supplies. I mean who doesn't love that smell? You know, the one of paper and pencils and binders galore?! Okay, moving on...


Thursday, July 27

fresh peach cobbler

Friends, I baked! 

Remember the farmers market haul from last week? I was contemplating what to do with all these peaches when I ventured over to Pinterest to see what I could find. Talk about overwhelmed by the options! I was having the hardest time deciding between cobbler, pie, crisp, or dumplings when I landed on this recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction. It seemed simple enough and looked absolutely delicious. Keep in mind that before this adventure, I had never even peeled a peach before... You can stop laughing now.


Tuesday, July 25

show and tell tuesday: what's on your phone


It's Show and Tell Tuesday and I'm joining Andrea in sharing what's on my phone. This should be fun... said no one ever after you see how organized and unexciting my screens are. I am definitely one of those people who can't stand any red bubbles - unattended red bubbles signify chaos! Oh wait, that's my life. Maybe by managing the bubbles I somehow feel more accomplished or in control of things. What an illusion that is!

Anyways, back to the boring screens. Looks like I currently have five of them. I apparently do not like the apps on my screens to go past the third row. Any rows past that and we've got clutter. The background I'm currently using is purple and plain and simple. Again - I must think this adds less distraction... because phone apps aren't in themselves a distraction at all, right?

Friday, July 21

on fridays we frolic

Oh, Friends. I am so happy to see Friday arrive. It's been another chaotic week - with blazing hot weather to boot. I know I've been a little scarce the past few days, so let's welcome the weekend with a quick recap.

FARMERS MARKET HAUL
I am super proud of my almost 1st grader. He's been spending his summer at Little L's daycare in the school age program, and they visit the farmers market a couple of blocks away on Thursdays. It's one of his favorite activities. So I thought this week I'd send him with money and he could buy some goodies for the family. Check out this haul!


Friday, July 14

let's talk books, chocolate, and deodorant

Happy Friday, Friends!

This week has been a super busy one work-wise, and as such my list of favorites is a bit on the short and sweet side. I'm hoping things will be a little less crazy come middle of next week. Who doesn't love budget season, month-end and quarter-end reporting?! (I secretly love it... I know, I am a dork.)

ONE
I finished Nine Women, One Dress by Jane L. Rosen. It was a quick and easy read. Definitely a feel-good chick lit novel. I wouldn't say there's a lot of substance to it, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. It required little effort from me and I stayed intrigued the entire time. This book is perfect for a day on the beach or one spent without electricity...

Nine Women, One Dress: A Novel by [Rosen, Jane L.]

A partial description from Goodreads:
"A charming, hilarious, irresistible romp of a novel that brings together nine unrelated women, each touched by the same little black dress that weaves through their lives, bringing a little magic with it."

Monday, July 10

weekending unplugged


Weekends absolutely fly by. We started ours off with a thunderstorm that killed our power around 8 pm on Friday night. I was thinking some unplug time might not be a bad idea, and this was God's way I assume of sealing that fate. It really wasn't that bad except for the complete loss of all the contents in our freezer/refrigerator - the power stayed off for close to twenty hours.

The most fun part was watching Little L. We kept telling him the power was out, but he didn't quite comprehend it so every time he tried something and it didn't work, he'd get so disappointed and frustrated all over again as if figuring it out for the first time.

Friday, July 7

interview with the blogger: answer ten questions

Hellooo Sweet Friday!

Since my week was mostly overshadowed by the pesky stomach bug and recuperating from the effects of that (including a few hours spent in the ER chugging IV fluids), I believe I'll stray a bit from the usual download of exciting happenings from the week and instead, ask YOU a bunch of invigorating questions.


Inquiring minds want to know...

[1] How do you read and keep up with other blogs? I currently use Bloglovin' and have no problems with the tool, but am curious if there is something better that I need to try.

Wednesday, July 5

twenty questions and answers

I am totally late to this party, but I love these sorts of posts. It's always so much fun getting to know your blogging besties better and meeting new ones. Plus, I can completely lack inspiration and originality. I just have to talk about myself - who doesn't love to do that? Ha!

www.theblendedblog.com

Tuesday, July 4

easiest patriotic cookies ever

Need a patriotic dessert on the fly? I have the perfect recipe for you - IF you can even call it a recipe.

We were headed to a family reunion on Saturday. I wanted to take a dessert and my prep time was non-existent. I decided break and bake cookies would be easy and the kids would love them. I had planned to grab a few dozen chocolate chip but then spotted these sugar cookies. I must have been feeling a little inspired by Mel at The Larson Lingo because it occurred to me that I could grab a patriotic bag of M&Ms and top the sugar cookies with those.


Monday, July 3

monday musings: a confession post

Hello Lovelies - Today, I just feel like sharing a whole bunch of randomness. So, let's imagine we're catching up over a scrumptious breakfast and hot chocolate (since I don't drink coffee.)

Do you know what's worse than having the stomach bug? Having the stomach bug while seven month's pregnant. Saturday started off perfectly normal and in high spirits. Then, that evening out of nowhere I started not feeling well and the rest is too gross to share. I'm pretty excited to WANT to eat this morning. I was worried I'd end up hospitalized because I couldn't even keep water down until yesterday. I am so thankful that God is taking care of me. I'm also praying that the rest of the family is spared!

I spent some time watching Gilmore Girls reruns when I was feeling so yucky. This may be one of my favorite episodes. It's shortly after Jess arrives and he and Luke are trying to figure out how to communicate.  


You know what? I have a different appreciation for Jess now having watched the new episodes of GG.

Friday, June 30

mama's got a brand new bag... or two

Happy Friday Friends! I have exercised some serious patience this week in waiting to share some of my favorites with you until today. So, let's not delay.

[1]
Remember on Monday when I begged for some handbag shopping advice? Well, I decided to head to TJ Maxx on my lunch break to see what they might have. I thought I could at least get a better idea of what style I really want. I perused over all their handbags, drooled over some Michael Kors and Kate Spade bags, and was about to throw in the towel when my eyes landed on this beauty.


Monday, June 26

the hunt for a new handbag - please help

Friends - Remember way back in January when I snagged this tote from Thirty-One? I've been carrying it ever since, and the time has come for us to part ways. I've been searching online, and I seriously cannot decide what I want.

I'm struggling because a part of me wants to downsize from the tote, but then it's so nice to have the space to throw my laptop, my Bible or kids clothes inside when needed. I dress mostly business casual for work. Does that help? Oh, and as another helpful piece of information - I am fashionably challenged.

Here are a few that have caught my eye. Okay, which do you like best and why? Go!

Anne Klein Perfect Tote Small Cross Body, Black

Friday, June 23

friday favorites: take me out to the ball game

I am SO happy to see Friday! And I'm even more excited that today is a staycation day! Yesterday, I decided the kids and I needed a free day at home - that's what vacation days are for, right? Sleeping in, yummy breakfast, pajamas 'til noon, movie reruns, and absolutely no rush to be anywhere... just exactly what this pregnant working mama needs.

As for my favorites from the week, I only have one that I really want to share. Not that I don't have other favorites, but this one is just that awesome.

Last Friday, my Farmer and I took Little J to his first Reds game and it was Ah-mazing. We had the absolute best time. We arrived in Cincy late afternoon with plenty of time to spare. We parked on the KY side and walked across the bridge to Ohio.


Tuesday, June 20

9 things i can't live without during summer

There are just some things I can't live without during the summer months. Most of these items are must haves year-round but become even more crucial in the heat.


[1] Batiste Dry Shampoo - I've been a convert of dry shampoo for several months now, but as summer has arrived, I can't imagine going without the stuff. I have pretty oily hair and can only go every other day without a wash. That is a huge improvement for me since I could never skip even one day before I started using dry shampoo. But in the summer, when it's daylight longer and morning comes too soon - the day for dry shampoo saves me so much time and effort. It's wonderful. I've tried a couple of different kinds, but Batiste has been the best so far. Especially during this heat when the oil is even harder to combat!

Saturday, June 17

having a prepared heart - Ezra 7:10


Hey Friends - I'd like to share my heart with you this evening. I've started following a one year Bible reading plan that I found on the YouVersion App. I'm several days in and am loving it so far. I really enjoy the order of the books of the Bible in this plan, and I don't feel overwhelmed at all to finish each day's reading. It's seriously doing my heart good to be in His Word every day.

I thought I would share one of the verses that stuck with me from Saturday's reading.

Ezra 7:10 says "For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments."

Friday, June 16

friday favorites: a blogging hiatus recap


Well Friends, are you as happy to see Friday as I am? It's been a busy week for me work wise so I haven't been awesome about capturing my favorites. I have literally zero photos to share. What fun is that? So, I thought we'd catch up on what's been happening this year while on my hiatus from the blogosphere.

Monday, June 12

black calf shenanigans

See this little rascal.


He was born on Friday. He's a cutie for sure, but he is also a little bit of an ornery thing. How so? He likes to venture outside the fence. He's little enough to escape, but his mama isn't. Plus, there's a creek that runs beside the field and we do not want him finding his way there because he might drown. So, we've been keeping our eyes on the field off and on throughout the day to make sure he's with his mama and she's not going crazy because she can't get to him.

Friday, June 9

friday favorites: a baby bump debut

Wow, it's hard to believe that this is my first Friday post since January! Time has seriously gotten away from me. I have so much to share with you from the past five months, but I will save that download for another day.

Today, let's chat about my favorites from this week.

[1] In case you missed it, on Saturday I shared the primary reason for my temporary hiatus. Baby #3 is coming this Fall! And believe it or not, this is my first baby bump picture. With the first pregnancy, I remember taking a picture every month like clockwork. Took a few with the second, and the pictures this round are practically non-existent. Is that not how it goes?

Tuesday, June 6

what i've been reading in 2017

book words letters study read school outside window plants grass

At the beginning of the year, Goodreads asked me if I wanted to set a goal for how many books I'd like to read in 2017. I've never set reading goals for myself before but thought it'd be interesting to keep track for once. I set a goal of twenty-five, and after five months, I am pretty surprised to report I have already read eighteen! I read in spurts so I expect I won't be able to keep up the rate at which I've been reading, but am feeling fairly confident I'll meet the goal before the end of the year.

So, here's what I've been reading and how I rated each on Goodreads.

Saturday, June 3

a little bit of exciting news to share


Well Friends, it's been a little while since my last post. I didn't mean to fall off the face of the blogosphere, but I did. Life happens. I can honestly say that I've missed all of you, thought of you often, and am looking so forward to getting caught up on what's happening in each of your worlds!

As for my world and what's happening with me, well... Baby #3 is on the way!! We are beyond excited. I'm already in my 6th month and I cannot believe how fast time is flying this round. If you're doing the math, my last blog post was in January and I was already feeling so tired. That was the beginning of my hiatus from blogging and lots of other things in life!

Friday, January 20

hello friday, hello sunshine


Happy Friday, Friends!

I know I've been a little more out of the blogosphere than usual this week, but life happened and at the end of every day this week, sleep trumped all. Speaking of Trump, I ended up taking a vacation day today and am watching The Inauguration as I write this. Let's Make America Great Again! Now, on to my favorites for the week.

The sun has returned. I was driving home from the office and I felt this strange warmth coming through my driver's side window, and I even felt the need to put on sunglasses. I couldn't believe I was actually seeing the sun! I can handle cold, but I need the sun to shine. And it feels like it's been days upon days since it has.

Tuesday, January 17

tuesday talk and 10 random facts about me


Hey Friends! I am linking up with Erika for Tuesday Talk, and since I completely missed Erin's 10 on the 10th link up last week, I'm going to mix and mingle the two today. I'm going to share a few random facts about me as though we just met and we're chatting over some hot chocolate and donuts. Yum!

Let's chat.

Hey there, I'm Trista. It's super nice to meet you, and I'm really glad you're here. I can just tell we're going to be fast friends, can't you?

Friday, January 13

fridays are my favorite


Happy Friday, Friends! I hope you have had a fabulous week! My week has been a little on the chaotic side. It's my busiest week of the month at work, and then I missed Monday because of a migraine. I can't imagine it had anything to do with the crazy weather here in Kentucky... I mean it was close to single digits at the beginning of the week and then we broke 70 on Thursday. In reality, only God can do that and that in itself makes it pretty cool (aside from the headaches, of course).

Since it's really Thursday night, and I'm once again coveting the feel of climbing into the cool of the sheets in my bed, I'm going to share a few highlights from the week and go do just that. By the way, does anyone else absolutely love that feeling?

Last Saturday, I did something I haven't done in ages. I laced up some roller skates and took off. I was terrified of falling and breaking something, but I was pleasantly surprised how quickly it came back to me. It was Little J's first time and it was NOT pretty. He was so stubborn, and he refused to listen to me when I tried to coach him on how to keep upright. He fell no less than 100 times. After about half an hour of constant falling, he finally managed to stay up some. I was thankful when that birthday party came to end, I did not want to have to make a special trip to the ER!

Tuesday, January 10

my eulogy: something to consider


On Sunday afternoon, we attended a celebration of life of a young woman who lost her battle with cancer. The eulogy was exceptional - describing the life she lived, how she lived it, and how her life and example inspired and impacted others in so many positive ways.

While fighting back my own tears, it occurred to me that if this were my eulogy, the same that was said about her could not be said for me. I began to think about how my eulogy would read. Please don't take this as morbid. If anything, it was a humbling experience - one where this young woman has again inspired and positively impacted the life of someone else, even after her passing.

Trista. Beloved wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend. I imagine that's similar to how it would begin. What I struggle with is the beloved part. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, beloved is synonymous to darling, cherished, dear, favored, favorite, fond, loved, pet, precious, special, and sweet. Related words are admired, adored, appreciated, esteemed, relished, revered; prized, treasured; and preferred.

I am loved, I wouldn't dare say that I am not because I know that I am. I am blessed beyond all measure. But I wouldn't say that I deserve the beloved title. Why, you might ask? Because I am definitely the inferior version of myself, of what I know I can be. How would my eulogy read according to me?

Friday, January 6

friday favorites: a few books and a royal oops

Happy Friday, Friends! Our first week back to the grind has been a bit of a challenging one. The boys have struggled with getting to bed at a decent time, therefore mornings have been a bear. Plus, I can't seem to find my brain or snag enough zzz's, so I feel like I'm functioning in slow motion. Combine the two together, and I'm pretty sure we're our own version of The Walking Dead (have never watched it, by the way, but it seemed like a fair comparison). Bring on the weekend!

I suppose it's no secret that I draft these lovely Friday posts on Thursday nights, and since it's quite possible that I might just fall asleep at the keyboard this round, I'm going to recap my favorites from the week as briefly as possible. Promise.

I started reading The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis to Little J this week. We're reading one chapter at night before bed. I wasn't sure how'd he take to chapter books, but so far, he is loving it, and so am I. It has quickly become one of my favorite parts of the week.


Monday, January 2

2017 goals: a new year for new commitments


Happy New Year, Friends! Welcome to the 17th year of the 21st century. Hard to believe, isn't it? I did most of my growing up in the 90s... I choreographed dance routines to Ace of Base in my driveway, recorded myself singing alongside Shania Twain on a cassette tape, and watched Dirty Dancing over and over again without my parents knowledge. The county fair was the event we looked most forward to and sports, thankfully, spared me from a lot of farm work.

Those times seem like ages ago. I've been out of high school almost 15 years and college a little over 10. Time absolutely flies, and truly does go by faster with each passing year. I'm determined to slow 2017 down. If you have any advice on how to make that happen, please share!

I've spent the last few days mulling over the year ahead and what changes I'd like to implement in order to better my quality of life. I could do this better, this life thing. If I could choose one word for 2017, I would choose BALANCE. I am the type of person that throws themselves wholeheartedly into something, so much that I end up burnt out. I have done this in the past with work, blogging, reading, television, dieting, exercise, etc. I am certain it is possible to enjoy all of these things at once as opposed to only one of them for a season.

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