7QT: third trimester & other things

Linking up with Kelly!

1 // I’ve made it to the third trimester! I’m 30 weeks! I still can’t believe we’re this far along and will be meeting our baby boy this fall. I have a loooong to-do list of things before he gets here, but I’m also quite ready to just enter into that stage of life and let what happens happen.Also, our little boy is QUITE active! And I loooooove it. He has been kicking pretty consistently (with great strength) since 17 or 18 weeks. This past week he was a bit quieter, but then Kevin began reciting some movie lines from his favorite films one night and little boy was back to his normal self.

2 // COLDPLAY COLDPLAY COLDPLAY! We saw Coldplay for the second time a few weeks ago, this time in Minneapolis AND with floor seating. It was quite the experience. It seemed like a much more chill concert than Philly, and I really loved it. I was amazed how close we were to them – what a gift. They are so unbelievably talented – the absolute greatest performers.

3 // Kevin and I spent a week in August in San Diego on vacation with my family. It was so great seeing everyone, especially my two nieces! They are both almost 2, which is SUCH a sweet age. Seeing them interact with each other was incredible. They understand things and are trying to communicate (sometimes quite hilariously). I loved every second of it. One of the highlights for me was spending a day with Kevin and my younger sister going for a hike in Torrey Pines. I actually was not very thrilled in the moment (I blame pregnancy hormones), but it was a good day scattered about with cliffs, the beach, a random taco joint in an office park, and some of the best coffee I’ve ever had. All the while finding a bathroom every 30 minutes.

4 // I recently splurged on a maternity stitch fix and it was great. Pricey…but great. I was SUPER impressed at how well everything fit. I certainly would not have been able to get all that right on the first try with my growing body. I ended up keeping everything because of the discount for buying all items and the credit I had – it wouldn’t have made a difference to return two items. I got a super nice pair of jeans, a great top that will work postpartum as well, the best cardigan I’ve ever owned, and two dresses (both work well for work and weekend wear).

5 // We hit up the Minnesota State Fair last Friday night, and while there’s not a TON for me to do and eat there, it’s always a great experience. I can always count on French Meadow Bakery to cater to at least some of my needs (they had multiple gluten-free options that night), and I was quite satisfied with a visit to their location. Gluten-free donut holes filled with nutella & marshmallow – umm, yes please. We also always enjoy our time seeing the goats. Love me the goats.

6 // One of my favorite things as of late is my new planner: Orderly Days by Motherhood Press. I have tried so many planners over the years. Some have worked well, and then I was unable to get the same one the following year. I love the Blessed is She planner, but unfortunately it didn’t really work out for my particularly needs last year and ended up sitting in my work desk most of the time, unused. Orderly Days is a very manageable size, and totally customizable. It has seven sections, so one part can be my monthly/weekly planner, one for work, one for our new business (more to come!), one for spiritual notes/journaling, and more. I really love it. I also love that I’m not restricted with what I put in there. I hole punch any printables that tickle my fancy and add them in where appropriate. I’m still figuring out how it’ll best work day-to-day, but it is a big YES in my book! Highly recommended!

7 // On Labor Day, Kevin and I visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, WI. We’ve been there once before, last fall, and have been eager to go back. It was a lovely & peaceful day. And while last year, we were praying for a little miracle, this year we could give thanks for that little miracle! Oh how much can change in a year!

The Joy of Community

The past two weekends were ones of great joy. The first weekend, one of my closets friends, Emily, came into town from Arizona with her husband, Ted, to celebrate their one year anniversary (October 4th). I was so grateful for the time Kevin and I got to spend with them: a Friday night gathering of her close friends still here in Boston, Saturday morning mass & brunch, Saturday evening at a friend’s engagement party, and Sunday afternoon when they visited to see our apartment.

 

It’s great to see both of them just so in love and thankful for a great first year. And although I miss her soooooo much, I couldn’t wish anything more for her than to be truly happy. One thing she said to me was that walking around Boston didn’t make her wish she still lived here; she enjoyed the city but wasn’t torn about living elsewhere. What this trip really made her long for, though, was the people. It’s tough coming back and having such effortless and beautiful friendships only to leave again.

It’s a hard thing for anyone; I’ve experienced many close friends leave Boston one by one, and whenever they return I’m able to see their joy of being around their community and the difficult moment of leaving (not to say that they haven’t all cultivated beautiful lives elsewhere – they most certainly have!). Yes, we still consider ourselves one community, even with all the growing members via marriages and babies. And it doesn’t die out, but only grows stronger with time as it matures. Being a part of the universal Church allows us to keep growing together, though it might look different with each passing year.

This past weekend, Sarah and I drove out to Albany, NY to co-host a baby shower for Ashlie with her mother-in-law. Ashlie & Josh lived in North Dakota for three years (Josh is in the air force), and they recently relocated to Penn State where they will be for about a year and a half. It is soooo much closer than ND, but still not the easiest to get to. So the Albany trip to Josh’s parents’ home was a real treat. Seeing her eight months pregnant was truly amazing! In just one short month we will have a new life entering our world, and it could not be more wonderful.

 

We stayed for just one night, so there wasn’t even a moment to feel sad about leaving as it was so quick. But I’m thankful for the short 24 hours we did have as I’m not sure when I’ll get to see them next and meet little Dill! I try to take these moments in; I try to really be present to them. It can be so easy for me to focus on the long stretches of time we’re apart. But God grants us these small events (more often that we ever could have dreamed of back in May 2011!) as a reminder of his goodness, and that as long as we are in communion with God, we are in communion with one another.

Will I be sad the day God calls Kevin and I to leave this city? Possibly all the way to Minnesota, possibly somewhere else? Absolutely. It’s not that I have a desire to live in Massachusetts forever, though. We look forward to building a home for our family in the place that is right for us. But this is my spiritual home where my faith grew. This is where everyone comes back to, in a sense. This is where our community reunites. This is where I still have beautiful, strong friendships. So I tryyyyy not to think much about that next step (though I do a poor job at it). It’s clear this is where we are meant to be at the moment, and I’m happy with that.  As a few of us liked to say back in the day, “Lord, it is good that we are here…and it will be good when we are there.”

A Quickie!

The weeks are so busy that I’m so bad at putting up a blog entry. But more to come soon, I hope! Last weekend I was graced with the presence of my dear friend, Emily, as her and her husband, Ted, celebrated their one year anniversary here in Boston. I hope to write more about that great time soon! This weekend, Sarah and I are headed to Albany, NY to meet up with Ashlie, the mother-to-be, for a little baby shower we’re co-hosting with her mother-in-law! It’s a real treat to now be within a reasonable distance to meet up with the Dills (North Dakota was just tooooooo far) for a long weekend.

And on Monday…I will take that much needed day off (my first time working that I’ve gotten off for Columbus day, btw, and I love it!). Maybe write another blog post! 🙂

Cheers!

All About Autumn!

To anyone who knows me, it is no secret that autumn is my favorite season. I know many people lovelovelove this time of year, and it’s no wonder why. The crisp cool air, sweaters & boots (and no winter coat), apple picking, fall baking, pumpkin flavored everything, all the smells. It’s pretty much perfection. And while I normally despise the summer months, this one has been quite delightful with its cool mornings and walkable evenings. And it’s gotten me even more excited for the full outbreak of autumn. What am I most looking forward to this year? Quiet weekends with my husband! Talk about a whole new world – it feels like since we’ve been together it’s been GO GO GO. Dates all the time, social events, getting engaged, wedding planning, social events, getting married, more social events. And now, we have no planned trips (well, except for a little one-nighter trip to Albany I have for a baby shower) until Thanksgiving! We’re excited to get into a routine, have our apartment in order (finally!), and take some nice long walks around the neighborhood. Baking, obviously. I have one specific fall baking magazine that has been my absolute favorite for the past two years. I still haven’t made everything in it – I’ve been making my way through the autumn produce. Our tiny apartment should have a nice, consistent aroma for the next few months. Seasonal crafts! Sarah and I have a plan to coordinate a decor calendar so we are prepared for each season. We’ll make time for frugal & creative crafting to make our homes as homey as possible. Fall Events like apple picking, pumpkin carving, movie nights and all the like with some great people. Since we don’t have a car and we live more in the city, going to an orchard is a real treat. Getting out of the city to see the autumn beauty is the BEST. Albany in October! Sarah and I will be making this trip through Western Mass for Ashlie’s baby shower, and in addition to being thrilled we get to throw this for her with her mother-in-law, we’re pretty pumped about the beautiful stops we’ll make along the way through all the beautiful foliage. I promised a beautiful maternity photo shoot with the mama and the baby’s non-biological aunts (meaning us, the friends). Autumn in Newtown, PA Serious goodness to come.