Monday, March 30, 2009

Megan's Baby Shower

Yesterday was my friend Megan's baby shower. Megan and I have known each other since freshman year of high school (about 15 years now!)-we were on cheerleading together and worked at Putt-Putt together. We also went to Daemen College together and pledged for the same sorority. We both ended up transferring to Buffalo State halfway through and both became teachers! She's still teaching though-and of course I'm not now. But now we're pregnant together which is very cool-I hope our kids end up being great friends in the future!

Megan is due at the end of April/beginning of May (she has 2 due dates a week apart) so she has about 4-5 weeks left to go. She's about 8 weeks ahead of me. Her Mom threw a nice shower at Orazio's in Clarence. It was a brunch with very good food! It was great to see a lot of friends that I haven't seen in awhile and to see all of the cute baby gifts she got. I only wish I took more pictures-my camera has been acting up and my batteries were dead (even though they were fully charged-long story) so I didn't take too many because I knew the camera was about to die at any minute. Sorry Meg-I wish I could have taken more!! Here are the few that I did take:

The cake:

My gift to her-the clothesline idea I stole from Jessica's shower (I think it was a hit and it turned out so cute!):

The two of us-Megan at 35/36 weeks and me at 27 weeks:

The next shower will be mine-yikes!!

Friday, March 27, 2009

27 Weeks

So today I'm 27 weeks along-officially now in my 3rd trimester! It's hard to believe it's 2/3 of the way done now-the baby will be here so soon now! I'm still feeling good-no issues or anything so I can't complain. Baby is very active during parts of the day-mostly at night when I'm relaxing. I've actually seen my stomach move a few times when he/she really gets going which is pretty neat. Here's to another 13 weeks to go!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sausage, Broccoli, and Noodles

I found this recipe yesterday while at work. I saw we had a new Family Circle magazine so I looked through it. They always have these really yummy looking desserts on the cover, but then I get disappointed when I see the recipes-they either take 8 hours to make, or have 6 sticks of butter in them (not joking!)-thanks, but no thanks! So I saw this in there and thought it would be good to try-so I ran to Wegman's today after work and made it tonight for dinner.

Sausage, Broccoli, and Noodles

3 packages (3 oz each) Ramen noodle soup, chicken flavor
1/4 cup sour cream (I used "Light")
1 tbsp. corn starch
3 links sweet Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
3 cups frozen baby broccoli flowerets, thawed

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook noodles for 2mins, reserving seasoning packets for later; drain and set aside. In a small bowl, stir together sour cream and corn starch, set aside.

2. Cook sausage in a large skillet over medium heat, breaking up with a spoon, for 5 minutes or until cooked through.

3. Add broccoli, 1 cup water and 1 1/2 tsp of ramen chicken seasoning (basically 1 packet) to skillet with sausage. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 3 minutes or until broccoli is cooked through.

4. Remove cover and stir sour cream mixture into skillet. Cook for 1 minute or until sauce thickens. Add noodles to skillet and toss to coat with sauce. Serve immediately. Yields 4 servings.

Notes: I couldn't find sweet Italian sausage that was turkey sausage. So I used mild Italian turkey/chicken sausage and it tasted fine. The store also didn't have broccoli flowerets so I used whatever the frozen broccoli is that they sell. Mine took a little longer to cook then it said-my broccoli wasn't thawed so that took longer and I think the sausage took longer than 5mins. (I was doing several steps at the same time so I wasn't paying attention to my timing).

Overall, this meal was yummy! We did have leftovers after we both ate so the servings they say it makes was pretty true. I didn't tell Gabe it was turkey sausage until after the fact and I don't think he noticed at all. I told him after dinner and he said I tricked him :) This meal's a keeper, that's for sure!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Catching Up

It's catch up day on here-after being home for the week, I spent most of the week back-posting about our trip so I haven't really put current news on here. So I figure I'll do a catch up post and then go from there!

Wednesday this past week we met with a 2nd pediatrician. It was a tough decision, but Gabe and I both agreed to go with the 2nd one we met with. It's not as new and flashy as the first office we went to, but we felt more comfortable with the doctor at the second place. It's a slightly smaller practice (4 docs compared to 7) and you're guaranteed to see a doc everytime you go in-as opposed to possibly seeing a NP or PA instead. So I'm glad that's finished-our next big decision will be daycare-which we meet with in April.

Friday we went to Buffalo for the weekend. My Great Aunt Anna (Grandpa's sister) passed away back in December and they didn't have a service for her then-she was living out of town and most of her family is out of town so they decided to wait a few months until most could travel in for it. So the mass and breakfast were on Saturday morning. My Grandfather flew in from Vegas for the week so we got to see him twice over the weekend which is nice-he hasn't been in since our wedding in July. He plans to try to come back this summer to meet the baby, so hopefully all goes well and he can make the trip back here then. By the way, he's predicting it's a girl! Saturday night we met our friends Megan, Todd, Renee, and Paul at Friendly's for some ice cream and to catch up. Then today we just hung out at my Mom's before heading home-we stopped at Gabe's parents for dinner and are now home to watch The Amazing Race. Then starts another work week...woo hoo!

So, I think I'm pretty much caught up at this point-I can't think of anything else exciting that happened during the week to post about!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Busy Day Off!

Gabe and I decided to take today off to regroup from vacation. We landed in Buffalo around 3 yesterday then went to my Mom's for some early dinner. We came home and unpacked, but neither of us was ready to go back to work already. So Monday off it is! It ended up being a busy day. We were up early to meet with our first pediatrician-it went well. We have one more to meet with on Wednesday this week and we'll decide between the two. After that, I had my OB appt. I was there over an hour because I had to do my glucose test as well. It wasn't as bad as I thought and all is going well so far!! We're good to go for another month. After my appt I came home to have a snack and then went grocery shopping since we had no food in the house. I was going to go to my usual workout class, but it was so beautiful outside that Gabe and I decided to go for a walk instead. We went about an hour and it was nice-I love being outside when you've been cooped up all winter. After dinner we finally did some relaxing and got ready for work the next day!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Last Day

Our last day in FL-boo hoo! I hear we missed some crappy weather back home so that's always good when you're on vacation! Our weather here was amazing-80s everyday and it rained maybe 10min one day and that was it! And it's supposed to be in the 50s when we land back in Buffalo so I can't complain about that. So on our last day, Gabe and I went for a nice long walk on the boardwalk. Then we went to the beach-which was pretty rough today. We still went in the water a little bit, but it was definitely a rough day out there. Later in the afternoon we rented a 4 seater bike which was fun-we had it about an hour and went up and down the boardwalk. It was a good time and we had some good laughs!
This is when we picked up the bike:
Here is Owen working hard ringing the bell:

Gabe Sr, Bianca, Gabe, Owen and I after our bike ride-time to eat!

After riding, we got some mexican takeout which was yummy. Then packed a little bit and went to bed! Part of me is ready to go home (I hate living out of a suitcase) and part of me is dreading it too. Just like the end to any vacation!

Friday, March 13, 2009

25 Weeks

So today I'm 25 weeks along! Hard to believe I only have 15 more to go! I keep saying this, but I feel I popped again! I swear I feel bigger each day now! It's funny how that happens. I have an appt on Monday so hopefully all is going well! I'll keep ya posted!

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Who would think that when you're thousands of miles from home, you would have visitors?! It just so happens that my cousin, Joe and his wife, Eileen moved down to FL in November. So when we decided where we were staying, I let him know and was curious to see how far he was from us. It turns out they live only 20 minutes away from Hollywood! I was looking forward to seeing him since we don't see each other much anymore-maybe once or twice a year. When we were kids we were pretty close so it's nice to see him when I can.

When we got to FL on Monday, Joe stopped by after work for a few hours to meet everyone and chat. Then on Tuesday, they both came to the house for some pizza. Afterwards, we went to this place called Jaxson's for ice cream. Let me tell you, I LOVE ice cream! So this place was like heaven on earth for me. The portions are just enormous, which you'll see from the pictures. We were seated right near the area where the waitresses pick up the finished ice cream so we got to see a lot of the stuff they make-it's all huge, and all wonderful!
This is a picture of us at Jaxson's-me, Joe and Eileen-just about to dig into the ice cream: My father-in-law (with his ice cream monstrosity) and nephew:

Gabe with his Oreo sundae:

When we got home from Jaxson's, our niece was passed out cold on my mother-in-law...too cute not to take a picture of!

On Wednesday we had more visitors!! Our Uncle Francis and Aunt Connie (on Gabe's side) have a place they bought down in FL and happened to be there for the month. They are about 45min north of where we stayed so on Wednesday they drove down to see our place and hang on the beach with us. After, we went to La Plage for dinner-there was no one there which boggled us-the food was great! The rest of the week we would laugh because the restaurant was almost always empty-we got all excited when we saw people eating there.
Here is the crew at dinner-me, Camille, Aunt Connie, Uncle Francis, Gabe Sr.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Hollywood Beach

One thing we loved about the house we stayed in was the proximity to the beach-we were half a block away from it which was great! Less than a 5 minute walk and there you were! The beach overall was very nice-the sand was a little on the coarse side-lots of broken shells, etc. Not the white sandy beach like Aruba had, but it was pretty decent. And near our house it wasn't crowded at all! Most people there were seniors-you saw a lot of the same people there everyday. We saw the occasional 30 and under group, but it wasn't very frequent. It definitely was nice that you didn't have to fight for beach space, no matter what time you showed up.
This is a picture of the beach area right near our house.
Another beach view-you can see the seaweed more here.
This is looking South-in the very far distance we believe is Miami.
And this is looking North-in the very far distance is Ft. Lauderdale.

Separating the streets from the beach is the really nice boardwalk. There was a decent amount of restaurants and shops along the boardwalk. I would say most places were a pretty good walk from us-we had a few places that were close, but the busy, bustling area was a good 15minute walk from our street. Somewhat of a pain if you wanted to get something, but nice that our area was less crowded. This is the boardwalk near our street looking North:
Gabe and I stopped for a photo along the boardwalk:
The one thing we noticed about the beach is that the water seemed rougher in the morning. By 1pm or so, a sandbar would emerge when the tide went out-which was a great place for the kids to play. The sandbar would last a few hours so typically we would head to the beach later in the day so the kids could play on the sandbar and the water was a little calmer. This is Owen burying Gabe in the sand on the sandbar-he had fun with that!
And here is Bianca on her first beach experience-not sure what she thought of it all! She seemed to have fun playing with everything!

Our only beach mishap was that on our 2nd day there, Owen got stung by a portuguese man of war! He was looking for seashells (his favorite thing to do that week!) and reached out to grab this shiny blue thing and got stung. We all thought he would be traumatized for the rest of the week, but surprisingly he went right back into the water the next day! We were happy for that! This is a photo of a different man of war we saw on our last day at the beach-this one was HUGE compared to the one that stung Owen. The beach was really rough on our last day and this drifted up on the shore-everyone was going over to check it out.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Welcome to Hollywood!

Florida that is! Today we landed in Ft. Lauderdale around 10am-we had a nice direct flight from Buffalo and arrived about a half hour early (gotta love that!). For our niece and nephew, Bianca and Owen, it was their first flight and they both were wonderful on the plane! It was a pretty uneventful flight which is always good. After landing and finding our luggage, we picked up our rental car (a Toyota minivan). Then it was off to find our home for the week. My in-laws found the house online....I think on a site called vacation rentals by owner. Our main criteria-3 bedrooms (it had to sleep 7 of us) and close to the beach. After about a 15 minute drive from the airport, we found our place.....

From the outside, it was hard to judge what the inside would be like. It wasn't the lovliest looking house, but then again a lot of houses in FL look different then back home. I also thought it looked a lot smaller from the outside than it did on the inside. It had a nice porch out front with a few chairs and table. Then we went inside....the first room you enter is the living room-you can only see about 3/4 of it here-there was also another chair and entertainment center across the room. But you can tell it's pretty spacious.

There was a long narrow hallway that extended from the front of the house all the way to the back. First off the hallway to the left was the master suite, which my in-laws stayed in-a king sized bed and full bath off of the room. Then off the hallway on the right was the kitchen-again a very nice size and it looked very up to date. The door on the right of this picture is a laundry and storage area which came in handy.
Next off the hallway on the left was the spacious dining area.

At the end of the hallway were two smaller bedrooms-one had a double bed which my sister in law and her kids stayed in, then there was our room with the 2 twin beds. There was also another full bath between the bedrooms. Overall, the house was great-plenty of room for the 7 of us and they had everything we needed-dishes, towels, beach towels, beach gear (chairs, umbrellas, kids toys), etc. It definitely met our needs. Oh, and the beach? We could see it from the sidewalk outside the house-we literally were a half a block away! More on that soon!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

All My Bags Are Packed.....

....and I'm ready to go (Yep, that's "Leaving on a Jet Plane for ya!). I'm pretty much all packed for our trip to Florida. And man, was it the longest packing ever! I literally had to try on everything I'm taking which was not fun. I procrastinated and waited until today to do it and it was very time consuming. No more just picking out what to wear and packing it-those days are gone for now. So today I spent a few hours trying on clothes to make sure I had stuff that actually fit me! But it's all done and I just have my last minute toiletries to put together in the morning.

Tomorrow we drive to Buffalo-I'm going to try and see Jessica and baby Connor while I'm there. I think we're going to have dinner with my Mom, Aunt Pat and Gabe's parents. They're driving in tomorrow as well since we're all flying out of there Mon. morning. So it should be nice-we haven't been to Buffalo since Valentine's Day so it's been awhile. Then Monday we're off for 6 nights of fun and sun!! Yay-I can't wait! I'm hoping to meet up with my cousin Joe while we're there-he moved there in November and is about 20miles from where we'll be. So that'll be cool to see him as well!

My guess is that I'll post updates for the week once we get back-I don't think we have internet access while we're there-we'll see how it goes!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

One More Day

....of work that is....then I'm on vacation :) We leave for FL Monday morning and for the first time (probably ever) I keep forgetting about it! I'm usually the one counting down trips months in advance ("we leave in 2 months from today"). For some reason, this trip totally crept up on me. Maybe because I'm pregnant and have "pregnancy brain", maybe because our house is still disheveled? I don't know, but it seriously didn't hit me until last Friday when I left work. It dawned on me: One week left then I'm off for a week! Even this week at work I kept looking at next week's schedule to see what was in store for us, then it would register-duh-I won't be here! So yes, tomorrow is my last day, then I have 6 work days off! Can't wait!

In other random updates-we set up appointments with 2 daycares for next month to go and tour the facilities. We're meeting with 2 pediatricians the week we get back from FL. And we got called today that our baby furniture is in! We're not picking it up until April/May though-we want to get the nursery done first before we cart all that junk here. Other than that, nothing is really new. I feel boring for once! Haha! I'm sure I'll have more to update in the next few days, but for now, I got nothin'!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Carly!!

Yesterday we went to Carly's 1st birthday party! Carly is the daughter of our friends, Julie and Richie. She was actually born on Leap Day last year so they decided to celebrate it on the 28th since she won't have a "real" birthday for another few years! It was a very nice party-everything had a Sesame Street theme to it which was cute. We had lots of yummy snacks followed by pizza and wings. Then came the presents and cake!! Here is a pic of her cake:
Carly showing off a new hat and sundress she got-sitting with her Mom, Julie:This is when everyone was singing to her-I think she knew it was all about her!Again when we were singing:She was so funny with her piece of cake. It was a pretty good sized piece and she just picked the entire thing up and started chomping away at it! Too funny!Tasting the frosting:The messy face that followed:And the really messy end result-she even had frosting up around her eye! She was too cute!We hope you had a wonderful party, Carly! We had a great time! Happy 1st birthday and many more to come!!