Wednesday, June 30, 2010

summer days--

Well, this has been an interesting week. A few highlights:

1. Our church conference last week was a lot of fun, and it was so good to have people from all our (6) churches together in the same room. It just puts us all on the same page again. And God, as always, was so good to us, the collective us, and the me and Jeremy us.

2. I got shingles this week. On my face. Yes, you read that right. Nobody ever told me how weird pregnancy can be. I don't even want to discuss the other weird things that I've experienced so far, but let me just say this is the fourth time I've been on antibiotics since I've been pregnant.

3. This is the first month that I have had absolutely no money coming in from my work, and Jeremy and I have been a little, er, nervous about it, since right now we are totally not making enough from just his salary, especially since we have a house AND an apartment. And then, ta da! God came through with a huge bonus through Jeremy's work that covered the difference. It's so crazy. We're currently having faith for His help in our finishing the house, and I feel like this is His way of showing us that we have absolutely nothing to fear. I feel so encouraged. And really, it's just super cool how He does stuff. So I'm kind of impressed too. Ha. He is pretty impressive.

4. This weekend is our trip to Bloomington, IL to hang out with some friends. We'll take a day trip up to Chicago one of the days and generally just hang out with some really solid, fun friends that we've known for awhile. I actually went to high school with them, although we were NOT friends then. We re-met through the church and just felt really connected to each other and now try to get together as much as possible. We're really looking forward to it. It will be the only summer vacation we have, since Jeremy is saving his vacation for the when Baby comes and has to spend the weekends working on the house anyway, and of course, there is the financial situation :-) We can't wait. I think I've been successful at talking them into hitting up one of Rick Bayless' restaurants. Huzzah!

Monday, June 21, 2010

feeling the love

Mom came back from her vacation in CA toting a couple of fun things for Baby, a CUTE book from Aunt Crystal by Charley Harper

and a full length bib made from vintage fabric from Mom!


And then waiting in my mailbox for Baby (and me) was a package.

My lovely friend Beth knitted my boy some adorable hats that make me sweat to think about now, but will be absolutely perfect for that little soft head come wintertime.

I'm about 25 weeks now, feeling (and seeing!) the little one move and grow. I've gotten to that really fun part of pregnancy, where the daydreams about him grow more frequent (along with trips to the bathroom), and feeling more and more special about being so close to our baby. I can't wait to meet him, sure, but I'm so enjoying this in-between time too.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

feeling better.

The last post up is a sad one, one that I wrote about a week and a half ago. Everything in life felt really, really hard. That Friday, as Jeremy and I stumbled heartbroken into our weekend, God showed up and reminded us of His love and presence. And, in true God-style, He overdid it, and Jeremy and I came out of the weekend completely refreshed, grateful, and so in love with our Dad.

Things have not changed, however, because that weekend was not about change, in situation anyway. It was a change of sight; He opened our eyes, again, to His plan and purpose for our lives in the present tense, and gave us the grace and strength, again, to handle all of the hard things we are currently experiencing.

I am so, so grateful. And I know Jeremy is too.

Things since then have been busy; I've taken over the financial paperwork and bill paying to give Jeremy a break as he is pulled in every other direction. That's been pretty interesting; math is not my strong suit, but organizing is, so I'm doing my best. This includes a budget that we came up with, which I don't think either of us have ever done, and which has been difficult. Good, but difficult. I'm still trying to read for my thesis, which is not going quickly at all (boo.), unfortunately. And Jeremy is still working on the house, leading small group for the church, and trying to keep up with a very busy schedule at work. And, we're both getting to know our little man, so active in my belly.

Also, I've been cooking. We are a part of a CSA this summer, which is a lot of fun but also very different as far as not having control over what we're "buying" for the week. I have been trying very hard to be adventurous and try everything (or almost everything) at least once.

This is a beet salad I made that is one of Giada's recipes. It was... okay. Here's the thing: I don't like beets. They taste "earthy," which basically means it tastes like dirt, no matter how long you cook it or how well you "caramelize" them. If you like beets though, go for it. The salad was entirely edible. HOWEVER, if you are pregnant, you should not try this. It took me awhile to figure out, but I confirmed my malady online: beets fall into the same, er, category as cauliflower, broccoli, etc. So, proceed at your own risk. Or, your husband's risk. Whichever.

We got basil a couple of weeks ago, which I immediately turned into pesto, a glorious, wonderful pesto. As I was eating a pasta made with that pesto, tossed with grilled, shredded chicken and Farmer's Market zucchini and squash, I thought, "Pesto just may be my favorite food." And it's so versatile! I didn't have any pine nuts (and they certainly weren't in my grocery budget for the week!) so I used some raw macadamia nuts that I had wasting away in the crisper. It was lovely. Still is: a small bunch made five servings. Guess what's for dinner tomorrow...

And then we had Thai basil the next week, which we didn't like. It has a distinct anise taste and scent, which both Jeremy and I can't stand. I used it in a stir fry that I've been making: grilled chicken, red bell pepper, and some CSA Swiss chard. Jeremy picked it all out, and I would have too, if I hadn't decided to give it a fair chance. I threw it away later though.

Something else I made this week (actually just last night) was a cherry clafoutis. I got the recipe out of one of my cookbooks, but recipes for clafoutis are online everywhere. I've also made it with blueberries, which is also fabulous. I look forward to cherry season every year for clafoutis.

So I've been busy, but good, enjoying the adventure of our CSA box and the confines of eating organic, real food on a tighter budget. Definitely an adventure.

Gotta go-- need to make dinner! I got a pound of grass-fed ground beef for hamburgers for this week--Jeremy's favorite--but just used 3/4 of the pound and added some cooked lentils to bulk it up. Not bad, and Jeremy was a good sport about my bastardizing his beloved hamburgers. And now I've got a 1/4 pound for taco salad tonight! Yay!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


My new favorite lunch: toasted honey whole wheat bread, a thick slather of goat cheese, warm roasted grape tomatoes, and big pieces of avocado, all topped with fresh basil, salt and pepper. On the side is zucchini, picked up at the Farmer's Market this weekend. It tastes like Spring and the fulfillment and payoff of a cold, dark winter.

This has been a weird week. I thought Jeremy and I were in a hard place already, and then yesterday the ground sort of shifted... and we're in an even harder place, or at least it seems like it. I know that God is in control (HE, thankfully, reminded me of that yesterday) and that HE sees us, and that HE has a plan, but these are things I know, not necessarily things that I am seeing.

So the ground is still shifting, and we don't know where we'll end up, and until then-- well, I don't really know. I know we'll be okay, though. And that's good enough for now. Hopefully our Spring is right around the corner.