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The Wife’s Survival Guide: The First Trimester

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This is my first post in my new category Mommy Corner. As wives many of us are mothers or mothers to be, and being a mother does come into play when it comes to being a wife. While these are two separate roles, they both play off of each other in some ways so I think as wives it’s important to see each role as an individual but also see how they come together. Sometimes the two can clash but it’s important to make them “marry” together as well as possible!

So for my first post in Mommy Corner, I am going to talk about the most wife changing phase I have encountered thus far. The first trimester. Dum, dum, dum. For most women, they look back at the first trimester and see it as a time they are happy to put behind them. I am in my 13th week of pregnancy and I am soooo close to entering the second trimester. I am counting down the days guys. If you have had a baby or are in the first trimester now, I bet you are too. It’s a time famous for morning sickness, exhaustion, and crankiness (super understandable).

Having had to face all of these as my body adjusts to our very first baby, it certainly spun my life around and changed my day to day life to the extreme. I went from a hardcore cooking, cleaning, meal planning, grocery shopping, yoga doing wife to a wife who lives inside her back and belly pillow with her trash can right next to the bed. For a first time mom, I was expecting to face morning sickness but I wasn’t expecting to pretty much be out of commission for a little over 3 months and I was truly not prepared. So to help you ease through your first trimester, I have created a list of the things that made it a little easier for me to get through.

1. Mini Fridge: Smelling everything so strongly, it’ll be fun they said. Well guys, at least for me, it has NOT been fun. This was actually the first thing that made me think I was pregnant and it has been my biggest issue. Thanks to my super nose paired with my nausea, I have not entered my kitchen in about 2 months. The smells of food and the oven heating up and the sink and the dishwasher, it automatically throws me into a dry heaving spell. I can barely even walk past it without gagging. Now, how does one live without their kitchen? That’s where the food is, that’s where the drinks are. Well, for me a mini fridge has saved my life. When my husband isn’t home I live off food I can stash in my bedroom and I have my mini fridge filled with water. Without it, I would still be dry heaving anytime I wanted a drink of water. Who wants that? I have heard of so many mommy’s having trouble going into their kitchens thanks to their super nose. It’s always good to have a back up plan to go and grab something you can keep in your room away from the kitchen if you happen to have this problem. I’m getting some smell good cleaning products and wall plug in’s this weekend as my nausea is starting to fade so I can hopefully tackle the kitchen once again.

2. Leachco Back and Belly Pillow: Now while this is probably going to help you even more down the road when you start to get a big belly, it helps so much in the first trimester too. At some point your belly is probably going to feel sore, you’ll probably be told it’s best to sleep on your side, your boobs are going to hurt if you roll over on them, and the sickness in general is going to make you uncomfy and sleep may not come so easy. I was a tummy sleeper and thinking of sleeping any other way seemed out of the question but it was quickly turning on me and becoming harder to do as time went on. So I broke out this back and belly pillow and since night 1 I have had no trouble sleeping on my side. It makes sleeping or hanging out in bed a super comfortable experience. You can pop one side in between your legs that keeps your hips spread apart, it can prop you up when you’re watching tv, it keeps you from rolling over, and it makes everything so much more tolerable. Now, this is probably not going to be your hubby’s best friend as it does take up a bit of room but I’m sure he would take it over a cranky wife that has had no sleep. You can grab yourself one here! You will thank yourself. Leachco

3.) Take out menus/frozen dinners: As I mentioned in #1, I don’t enter my kitchen so sadly I had to put to rest my cooking. Sigh. You go into pregnancy with the idea that you are only going to eat healthy food. But if you’re like me, morning sickness likes to slap you around, exhaustion is something you thought you knew about before but now you REALLY know, and so cooking is the last thing you’re probably going to do. Doctors usually tell you to eat what you can stand in the first trimester, so I have been eating out a lot as my husband works 2nd shift. Quick foods become your best friend. Try to eat healthy when you can but if salads make you sick and pizza is the only thing you can keep down, eat that pizza! As the second trimester approaches, I think I have over worked myself with the fast food, so I am actually craving fresh foods and cooked foods. So just try and eat better when you can, in the first trimester, just make sure you get some kind of food. That’s most important.

4.) Preggie Pops: They made leaving my bedroom possible on most days. They are little sour candies that kill morning sickness. The first time I ran into morning sickness, I popped one in my mouth, and ahhh it went away and I was able to sleep. They can get real sour but it’s so much better than getting sick at the grocery store. If you have a babies r us near by, go by and pick some up! If not you can get them right here. I would go ahead and get two while you’re at it. I know they had ones like actual lollipops, then they had the drops (shown), and gummies. I preferred the drops as they go further and stay in your mouth longer. But get whichever you think you can love the most. I am so thankful for these candies.

preggie pops

5.) TUMS: Heartburn is so real. It keeps you awake, it makes you extra nauseated, it makes you uncomfortable and miserable, TUMS have saved me quite a few times from  going crazy. I suggest the mint flavored, I think it’s less chalky flavored than the fruit flavored and mint is known to be easy on tummies. Just go ahead and have it on hand, you’ll really want it when you need it.

6.) Tylenol: One thing about being pregnant, what you can put into your body is limited. Especially when it comes to medicine. Tylenol is what you can take for any headaches or aches and pains you get (headaches become quite mean around 13 weeks), and like TUMS, you’re really going to want it when you need it. Hormone headaches are terrible. So you certainly want to safely treat it when they come.

7.) Leggings/Yoga Pants: There’s nothing quite as uncomfortable than something cutting into your growing stomach (ahem, jeans). And you’re already uncomfortable from all your symptoms, you will want to be as relaxed as you can be. When you’re super bloated, and your boobs are hurting, and you have a headache and heartburn attacking you, and the feeling you are going to throw up any second, you don’t want to feel suffocated in jeans or tight clothing. The first trimester is awkward because you are growing out of your old clothes but not quite big enough for some maternity clothes. So embrace all the stretchy clothes you have!

8.) Orange Juice: Going back to point #3, you probably aren’t going to be loading yourself down with tons of milk and healthy foods, and orange juice is a way to not only get nutrients in your body but it also fights off sickness. Pregnant women have weaker immune systems and catch colds and things easy and as we are limited to medication, orange juice can really help out your immune system. Try and get OJ with calcium. A lot of prenatals don’t have a lot- if any- calcium in them and calcium is very important with a growing baby. If baby doesn’t get enough from your food, baby will take it from your bones. I got little cartons of OJ that I keep in my fridge and usually try and drink one a day. Sometimes 2! :)

9.) Ginger Ale/Sprite: Anything that helps your nausea is something you want to embrace. I know for a lot of mommies water becomes hard to handle on a sick stomach, and something fizzy and bubbly truly helps. These are caffeine free and can help tame a sour tummy and you get fluids if you can’t handle water. Try and still drink water, as it’s probably one of the most important things you need during pregnancy (try some drink flavoring if you are having trouble) but really- sometimes your stomach just demands some sprite. I love mind ice cold with ice.

10.) A loving husband: My husband has been a life saver to me. He has changed my trash, made me food, cleaned things up, rubbed my back, got my medicine, prayed for me, and supported me. Some days will get tough, you’ll feel over whelmed and weak. Nothing helps quite like your hubby helping you navigate through it with prayers, kind words, and helping you do the things suddenly you just can’t do anymore. Lean on him during this time and let him know he is much appreciated and one day you’ll probably cook again ;)

Now, you may not need all of these things. You may not have nausea (luckyyyy), your kitchen may smell like roses, and you may already be a back sleeper. But it’s wonderful to be prepared for what comes your way. And even though the first trimester seems just awful, it’s all for the best cause and it’ll be over and soon you’ll have your sweet little baby in your arms and the first trimester will be a thing of the past and it will all be very much worth it.

overtime

Ways to make overtime easier

In most work fields, overtime is bound to happen at sometime. It of course has it’s good and bad sides. The good usually being some extra income, the bad being you can really miss your husband. Today I’m going to focus on when your husband works overtime as I am currently in this part of life. My husband has been working about 58 hours a week vs the normal 40. While we are super blessed for the extra income- especially with a baby on the way and with us trying to move, it hasn’t been fun, I may have even shed a tear or two (you can blame that on the hormones if you’d like but really any non-pregnant person could easily cry over this as well). Those extra hours really cut into your time together no matter when the overtime is spent (in my case, my husband works 2nd shift) and suddenly it sort of feels like you haven’t seen your husband in weeks, even though you have. It can be tough so allow me to share with you ways I conquer the time.

Keep Busy: In your down time, it can be easy to focus on the negative. It can be easy to focus on the fact that he’s not there and that your day is going down differently. But keeping your mind distracted can be a strong and powerful tool to get through any rough time. Pick up a new book (I really like starting a whole book series), find a new Netflix show to binge on (I have really liked New Girl, I just started Pretty Little Liars, and I have heard a lot of rave reviews of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), pick up an old or new hobby, hang out with friends, deep clean the house, start a new work out routine (I really suggest taking up Yoga), and the list goes on!

Focus on the future: Usually overtime is a temporary thing, it can help to keep this in mind and focus on a time coming up soon when things will be back to normal. Plan a date night to catch up on time together- it will give you something to look forward to. And knowing things are only for a short season can bring some positivity back to your mind that has been a little down later.

Keep up the communication: Make the most of any time you can talk with your spouse, breaks, when he gets home, before bed, before he goes into work. Your time is a little more limited for now so it’s even more important to make the most of your conversations and stay connected. Stay about your days, talk about your feelings, talk about your plans. Turn the TV off for awhile when you chat so you can really spend the time connecting instead of being distracted. Then get back into your normal routine so things feel as normal as usual and your hubby can get optimal rest time!

Hang in there ladies and really focus on the positives that come along, even if it is just extra income.

how to relax

How to relax

How to relax, doesn’t sound like something you would need to read about, but in all actuality the average human has a hard time getting into a relaxed state. I am one of those people, I have always been a high stressed, highly anxious person. Tense is my name and worrying is my game. I realized how much I sucked at relaxing after getting a massage when I started getting horrible neck pain. The massage took me to a state that I had no idea my body could get to. I wasn’t tense and I felt at ease. I then realized as time went on that while resting in bed, I had to force my body to feel relaxed and it took a lot of concentration. It couldn’t be normal to be that tense, there was no way it’s healthy to walk around all day, even laying in bed, with a tensed up body. To my surprise though, it’s an issue a lot of people deal with- and most of them like me had no idea. So I began to think of ways to truly relax and began trying them out. Check out these tips and try them for yourself, see if you notice any changes in your body- for the better!

1.) YOGA- My #1 go to. Nothing relaxes me quite like Yoga does. I could do it every hour on the hour if I had my way. The good thing about Yoga is that you don’t already have to be in some sort of excellent shape. Anyone can do yoga, no matter how much you weigh, no matter how flexible you are, no matter how many times a week you work out. There is a level for every person and yoga is very customizable. There are ways to modify each pose to fit your level and needs and you can go as slow as you’d like. I sat out the last 10 weeks of my pregnancy and my body started to get stiff, my blood pressure was rising because of how sensitive my hormones have made me, and I wasn’t sleeping well anymore. And of course, my neck pain was back. Now when I get stressed, I kind of crave yoga in a way. And as soon as I finish my routine, I feel 99% less stressed that I was when I started out. You can look up poses online and find out what works for you OR you can look up routines online. I have really come to love Yoga with AdrieneI suggest trying her 30 day’s of Yoga. I am going to try and find some more of her workouts that are pregnancy friendly for me! :)

2.) Music: Sometimes switching it on in the back ground can do the trick but try really focusing on it, “getting lost in it.” Did you know listening to music releases Dopamine? The feel good chemical. Turn on your favorite music or some nice soothing sounds, you can google soothing sounds on Youtube and get a great selection. This is probably my husband’s favorite way to relax. He pops on his headphones and lays in the dark forever just listening and relaxing. I like to walk around when I listen to music, so do whatever makes you comfortable when listening to music and get into it.

3.) Watching TV: Funny how I went from Yoga to watching TV but getting lost in your favorite TV show distracts you from your everyday stressors, which is good even if it’s for a bit. While you should probably learn to deal with your stressors head on- it does help to get away from it all for a bit. If TV isn’t your thing try a good book! :)

4.) Treat yourself: To a massage, to a coffee, milkshake, a little day trip. Do what won’t stress you out financially later but they don’t call them pick me up’s without reason. Sometimes introducing a small amount of happiness can make an ever bigger difference. Especially getting all the little stress knots out of your body with a massage (yes, they are a real thing). I get them easily and wish I could get a massage weekly.

5.) Focus on the moment: Enjoy the moment instead of looking forward for a change, don’t think about tomorrow, think of the small win you are having in the moment. This morning I woke up dreading my husband having to go to work for 10 hours, then I took a breath and cuddled up next to him telling myself to focus on the joy that I am getting from him being there in that moment. Why should we always allow the future to distract us from our present?

These are small things and some of them may work for you and you may struggle with others. The point is to be aware of your body and the state it’s in and the drive to change it if it’s not where you want it to be. We live in a high paced, high stressed society that relaxation is taken from us most of the time without notice, we can go on being tense for years and then one day realize the impact it has had on your health and our bodies. Take charge of your relaxation and make a change! You’ll thank yourself later! :)

3 everyday things

My hubby and I have a pretty basic routine when it comes to our Monday-Friday and most people do. I have worked out our routine to where we fit important things in our day that I think all couples should try and make room for. They seem to be pretty basic things but not everyone gets to fit in these things. On paper they don’t seem major and are probably the first things you cut out if you are having a hurried day. We are on a second shift schedule but these are things no matter what shift you are on, you can typically fit them in somewhere. Everyone is different so some of you may not be able to, but I suggest trying them when you can. They are small things but make a big difference.

1.) Pray together: The couple that prays together, stays together. It’s an intimate moment between you and your spouse and God. You become one when it comes to your needs and it gives you a moment to express thankfulness together as one. also, two people praying for one thing is always better than one. You should pray for your marriage, pray for your family, and common goals. Check out this post focused on marriage specific prayers if you need guidance. You can do this when you wake up (a great way to start the day) but only if you won’t rush it, you want to be able to take your time with this and get into the moment so if mornings are rushed, try it before bed, the middle of the day, before a meal, whenever you can squeeze it in!

2.) Share a meal together: I don’t know about you, but me and my husband have a common love of food and really bond over it. Our favorite thing to do is go out to eat together, we don’t do this daily but we do have a meal of some sort together each day. It’s a good time to enjoy something together in the day. Even if you plop down in front of the TV and eat, it’s a shared relaxed moment which is important to enjoy each day.

3.) Talk about your day: This is the most important one. My husband and I always check in through out the day with each other and make sure we are having a good day but when my husband comes home we talk about our day in detail. Talking about your day not only helps you personally- to get things off your chest, but it keeps each other in the loop. Imagine going through each day not knowing what your spouse is doing and experiencing and going through, that part of the world would be dark to you, and as much time as those who work spend at work, it’s a big part of their life. So it’s amazing to connect and feel part of that piece of their life. It’s so important to feel connected on all levels in marriage.

I spend the day looking forward to these moments with my husband. We both do our own things through out the day, as he works and I do my things at home, so it’s amazing to sit and connect with him a few moment’s out of the day. I try to have as many of these moment’s as possible but life does require certain things from us, like work schedules. But if you put your foot forward and do these things, even on the most quick and busy schedule, you can stay connected which I cannot express enough of the importance of.

What do you and your husband do daily? Sometimes routine’s aren’t a bad thing! They help keep the important things in check.

52 weeks

The 52 Week Money Challenge

What if you had $1,378? You would probably be pretty happy. I feel like we live in a day and time when savings isn’t something many of us take seriously. When we have an extra $10 when we finish paying our bills, we think, woohoo let me buy this big $10 steak this week. And it happens paycheck after paycheck. We live in the here and now and then one day we find ourselves wishing we could go on vacation or our car needs a major fix and there is no funding and so we scramble or scumb to credit cards or loans to pay for the fix. I have learned these things the hard way and it’s never fun so I have put a bigger importance on savings.

Next year my husband and I plan to go to Destin a little after baby gets here! Woohoo. I am so excited! :) It’s been a few years since we’ve been to the beach and we are dying to go. Now, we have a plan to pay for the hotel, but that’s not all we have to pay for. We have to pay for food, gas, any fun things we plan to do, and be prepped for any emergencies along the way (one time when I went to the beach, I hit a curb and ruined my tire. My mom had to wire me $90 to get a new one when in reality I should have had a plan to take care of it sooner so I didn’t have to replace the whole thing, anyways…)! With a baby on the way, I would be lying if it never crossed my mind how we could save for baby and save for the beach. But then I came across this pretty little savings plan that almost perfectly aligns with when we are going to the beach. 52 weeks money challenge It’s called the 52 week money challenge and at the end of 52 weeks, you end up with $1,378. The perfect amount for food and fun in the sun. What I really love about this challenge is that it’s easy and you are never having to pay out like half your paycheck (unrealistic) at some point. Let’s face it, who can spare half of their pay check (or more for some people) for savings when you have bills to pay for? The highest you ever contribute is $52, as the amount increases by $1 each week. It will take some dedication, especially since a year seems so long from now, but keep your eye on the prize and you will thank yourself a year later when you have the money in your pocket and can do something fun or something that will help better yourself financially. Take a look at this quick list of things you could do with $1,378, and take into consideration what you would do with that money and if maybe the 52 week money challenge is something you should do! I think I will do it backwards and get the hard part out of the way now so later, it will be easier!

1.) Vacation- take a trip to Florida or the nearest beach near you. Depending on how long you stay and where you stay, this could cover the majority or your trip or the hotel. Make it work for you. Think of yourself, a year from now on the beach. Wouldn’t some savings be worth it? Yesss.

2.) Savings Account- This one is obvious. And probably the smartest financially. having $1,300 in your savings could cover a big car repair if you run into one day or you can put it towards retirement!

3.) Paying off debt’s- Sure it may not seem the most fun thing you could do with the money but paying off debt eliminates payments, which can open up more money for savings, or vacation, or whatever you need. It will eliminate stress if anything.

4.) Charity- Donating to charity really feels good and you can pick your own. Donate to your favorite cause. I really don’t have to explain this one much to you because :) well you already know donating to charity is an awesome thing.

5.) A mix of them all!- You can always divide the money up and do a little of everything.

No matter what you spend it on, I challenge you to try it for a year! See how good you feel this time next year. And when a year comes and you see how awesome it feels, start over. Do something else with it the year after or use it for the same thing. I think once you get a year down and enjoy the “hard” work it’ll get easier and easier to do each year. Just think of it as another bill you HAVE to pay. If it were a bill you would have to figure out how to work around it anyways right?

Have you ever participated in this money challenge or some other kind of challenge? How did it go? Did you enjoy the pay out if you completed it? Share in the comments! :) Looking forward to hearing from you as always!

expectation banner

From Expectation to Appreciation

from expectations to appreciation

Ever since I found out I was pregnant and began to experience the fun that is nausea, food aversions, and a crazy strong sense of smell, I have been very appreciative of my husband. As a stay at home wife, I cook, clean, and do those kinds of things. But since food makes me want to run for the hills (I know, a very sad thing for me), the kitchen has pretty much become a torture chamber for me, so I rarely visit it. And when I do have to, it is not pretty as the smells of the food attack me and turn my stomach. So my husband has picked up my daily tasks also, when it comes to the kitchen anyways. He cooks his own food- well pops it in the oven. They preach eating healthy and cooking all of these grain and protein filled foods but never ever do they mention how difficult it is in your first trimester. I am being real enough to admit to you that frozen and ready to eat foods have taken over my home the last few weeks. The doctor says eat what you can hold down, for me that’s mini chocolate donuts and popsicles. Thank goodness for prenatal vitamins.

As I wait for this mean first trimester to pass me, I am learning the ropes of leaning on my husband when I am weak. We have usually had our own roles in our marriage. He earns money, I take care of our home. Now he is earning money, grabbing me water, toasting poptarts at midnight for me, and baking his own food before work- as well as packing his lunch. At first, I felt bad. I felt bad that I had to abandon what I felt is my assigned tasks. But my husband comforted me over it, and still does. Letting me know that he is happy to do it, and that I’m growing his child inside of me- which is a big job in itself. It is true, that in our marriage vows we talk about in sickness and in health, the highs and lows, richer or poorer. And what I have thought about in my many days in bed is that I am very thankful that I have a husband who upholds his vows with a smile on his face, but that I shouldn’t chalk this all up to him keeping his vows. He is doing these things for me out of love, and if he were to just go get me a glass of water on any other day without the sickness and growing a life form inside of me, would I be as grateful as I am when I am sickened by the very thought of doing such a simple task on my own? I would say thank you and mean it, but I wouldn’t look into it so much to see just how the little things in life do speak volumes.

I think as a married couple it’s so easy to take things for granted, to just expect certain things. I think when you sit and think about the reasons for actions, what’s behind them, a small gesture will bring much more appreciation to our significant others than before. We may do this already at times, but it’s easy to get caught up in life and associate nice gestures with expectations. I am showering my husband with thank you’s as he helps me with everything. A husband should contribute to his home and help, so I’m not just thanking him for feeding himself or loving me, but I am thanking him for contributing and letting him know it’s appreciated and not just expected of him. My husband has always helped me, even before baby, and I know he will continue to without complaint and will out of love. I just want to turn things that may be expected as the duty of a spouse, into things to appreciate and love also, not just take it as part of the package. And this goes from husband to wife as well. We should all learn not to JUST expect anything but to love and appreciate everything as well.

Peach Tea Banner

Easy to go Peach Iced Tea

title photo

Peaches, oh that sweet sweet smell. Being someone who is allergic to everything, including all acidic fruit, it makes me appreciate the things I’m not allergic to even more- like peaches. Now, if I get too messy with them I still break out but nothing like I do with lemons or pineapples or tomatoes or…you get it. But, peaches are my saving grace. They taste PHENOMENAL and like I said, I can enjoy them without fear. So any time I can incorporate them, I want to.

Lately my husband has given up soda (yayyyy!) and as a treat from time to time he enjoys tea. He also shares a love of peaches so it came to no surprise that when they went on sale (I got 8 of them for $1.87!) and I brought some home, he requested some peach tea. I was all over it. I am no stranger to flavored drinks, especially teas, so this came pretty easy. But when I saw my husband’s mason jars that I use for his Easy to go Iced Coffee, and thought heyyyy, we can make the peach teas even better, put them in mason jars so they are easy to grab on the go! Picking him up from work last night all I had to do is grab one out of the fridge and get on my merry way.

If you don’t dabble too much in the kitchen, homemade peach iced tea may sound complicated. But it’s really not. I promise, any of you with some peaches and a pantry can pull this off easily. Take a look and see for yourself…

What you need:

  • 3 Peaches- sliced
  • 1 Cup of Sugar
  • 1 Cup of Water
  • 2 Lipton Iced Tea Bags
  • Mason Jars- optional.

Throwing it all together:

See this prettyPeach Syrup pink stuff? That’s what’s going to put the peach in your peach tea. Isn’t it beautiful? You kind of hate to spoil it by adding some boring brown tea, but once you taste it- you’ll be like, who cares what it looks like when it tastes like this?!

and as I promised, it’s really easy to make. All you have to do is take your water and bring it to a boil. After that stir in your sugar, let it bubble for a minute. Then take it off the heat, add in your peaches, and let it sit for a couple of hours to come to room temp. Once it is, you can store it in a jar like this until your ready to use! Or, if you are ready for that tea, we can go ahead and start mixing it all up!

The next part, you’ve probably already done. Brew some Tea. Bring 8 cups of water to a boil, and then steep 2 LLipton bagsipton Iced Tea Bags for 5 minutes. One your done steeping, take out the bags and set aside.

Take 3 mason jars and fill to the first line with peach syrup. My jars it was to the 4 line.

Nowwww, add tea to the last line at the top.

 

tea all together

And lastly, seal on the lid, give it a shake, and then let it come to room temp before refrigerating.

See? I keep my promises! :)

 

 

 

 

To make it even better, add in some ice, and take it outside to enjoy the summer weather. Enjoy it for me too because where I live, it’s been raining for 2 weeks now :/

Feel free to send pics of your sunshine filled day as you enjoy your Peach Iced Tea! Hope to hear from you. :)