these days with baby zee.

happy friday before a long holiday weekend! aren’t these the best kinds of fridays? i really think they have to be. also, happy first day of july! did you hear me? JULY. what the actual.

i’m writing this in the car on the way to a cabin for the weekend. Amelia just upchucked a little (update: she upchucked twice within the first hour of the drive) so we made a nice little gas station pitstop and now she’s riding in a front-facing car seat for the first time ever. it was very unceremonious. 

and with that fun piece of info, please to enjoy my latest belly photo and fun, necessary facts about this pregnancy. have a fabulous 4th of july everyone! 


how far along: 24 weeks. (i’m on the every month update plan for now but will get more frequent after 32 weeks.)

i’m feeling: honestly pretty great.i have some round ligament pain (for those of you who are like, wtf is that, it basically means the muscles around your pelvis are stretching and it feels like you’ve been kicked in the crotch by someone for a while…every day), but still have great energy and i even golfed 9 holes walking last night!  

total weight gain: 14 pounds. like i said last update, i was at about 12 pounds gained at 24 weeks. so i’m not too far ahead of where i was last time anymore. i’ve definitely been feeling more full these days so that might have something to do with it. 

baby zee’s size: this week, baby is the size of an ear of corn. which is very appropriate for 4th of july weekend! 

this week: i had my 1-hour glucose test…and failed. it’s like the worst dejavu ever. i failed my 1-hour last time too and had to take the 3-hour test and i swear to you, it was more unpleasant than giving birth. so i’m a little salty about the whole thing. i’m pretty confident that i do not have gestational diabetes so it’s that much more annoying. 

maternity clothes: i broke down and grabbed a few dresses during a huge old navy sale and it was so worth it. i spent $75 on four dresses and found the holy grail of maternity dresses in the process. take note: old navy maternity is the best, bar none. 

sleep: still pretty okay. the round ligament pain gets worse when i’m laying down, so that’s no fun, but once i’m asleep, all is well. 

best moment this week: not my appointment…probably watching Amelia play with her baby doll and feeling really awesome about how she’s going to do with another sibling around the house. 

movement: slowly getting stronger and more frequent. baby zee seems to be a jumper or a boxer. lots of jabs this time around. 

food cravings: malts. why? it’s so weird. 

food aversions: i get full after about 8 bites of anything so that’s not cool.  

belly button in or out: it’s basically flat now. 

looking forward to: spending the weekend with the family at the cabin…we might try to get out once more before october but either way i want to enjoy this time together before we grow by a person. 

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gluten-free pumpkin muffins.

oh hey everyone! guess who’s back in the baking game? this pregnant lady.

if you follow me on snapchat (find me at username hooleywithaz) you might have seen some of my gluten and dairy-free baking shenanigans lately. long story short, and which i will be going into in more detail in the future, we’ve been battling some pretty severe eczema with Amelia over here. the good news is that thanks to some dietary changes and some amazing topical treatments (both of which we hope are temporary after some months of working everything out), she is now a happy, itch-free toddler who can wear short sleeves and run around in her birthday suit.

toddler mama picnic

we are starting to slowly transition gluten and dairy back into amelia’s diet, starting with dairy, but because it’s slow, i’m still doing a lot of modified cooking and baking. and while there are a lot of great commercial gluten-free products out there, sometimes you just want to bake something homemade, you know?

enter the savior: mama hools. my mother has a special set of skills, many skills. one of these skills happens to be cooking for people with food allergies. and i’m talking real food allergies, not “i want to lose weight so i’ll tell myself i’m allergic to gluten” allergies. she also happens to know how to adjust recipes to make them taste delicious, even when they’re free of anything seemingly tasty. she’s a magical fairy, i’m telling you.

she has many amazing recipes, but one of our favorites is her gluten-free (and dairy-free) pumpkin muffins. they are moist, flavorful, and freeze beautifully, which makes them the holy grail of gluten-free muffin recipes. she found the original recipe at gluten free goddess, but modified it a lot to accommodate some additional allergies and in my opinion, made it easier and better. i would choose to eat this pumpkin muffin recipe, and i’m not even gluten-free.

i posted a picture of this deliciousness on my instagram and got so many requests for the recipe that i thought i’d share it here. if any of you are gluten-free, or just looking for an awesome pumpkin muffin recipe, i highly suggest that you make these. let me know if you have any questions on the ingredients or the recipe, just leave a comment and i’m happy to help!

gluten-free pumpkin muffins

gluten-free pumpkin muffins (makes 12-16 regular muffins)

dry ingredients

  • 2 C. all-purpose gluten-free flour (w/ xanthan gum added, my flour called for 1 1/2 tsp. for this amount of flour and type of recipe)
  • 1/3 C. organic coconut flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 1/3 C. coconut sugar (mix it with enough maple syrup to make it packable)

wet ingredients

  • 1/3 C. olive oil or coconut oil (i used coconut)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 C. almond or coconut milk (i used almond)
  • 1 can pumpkin puree

preheat oven to 350 F. whisk together dry ingredients. add in wet ingredients, mix well by hand or mixer, making sure all dry ingredients are incorporated. if desired, stir in by hand 1/2 C. roughly chopped pecans, walnuts, raisins or chocolate chips.

line a muffin tin (regular or mini) with liners or grease well. spoon batter into tins, filling close to the top. smooth the tops with the back of a wet spoon. bake 15 minutes for mini muffins, 22-25 minutes for regular muffins. let cool and remove gently. store in a tupperware, or freeze. to defrost: 5-10 seconds for mini muffins, 10-20 seconds for regular muffins. keep an eye on them though, i’ve burnt my fair share, they go faster than you think!

ENJOY!

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these days with baby zee.

hello again! i know what you’re thinking. two posts in a week? who are you? what have you done with erin? you guys, i don’t know where it came from, but the writing bug hit me this week, and even if the creativity bug hasn’t caught up yet, at least i’m writing! [edit: oh wait, i never posted this on friday so i guess i’m the same old erin. continue on with your lives.]

we’ve just been over here enjoying the gorgeous weather minnesota decided to give us, eating all the smoothies and freezie pops we can get our hands on (we being Amelia and me), and hanging out with dad as much as we can. it’s been a pretty great start to summer, i must say.

we had our ultrasound this week, which was great [sidebar, we are not finding out the gender of the baby, just like we didn’t with Amelia. it just seemed fun to do it again, and everything we have for the first month or so is already gender neutral, so no worries there. i know some of you think we’re crazy, and some of you think that’s awesome, and that’s totally how parenting in general is, so everything is as it should be!]. just because we’re cool, Mister Man and i had my mom watch Amelia so we could enjoy the appointment, and then we went out to a nice lunch to celebrate our anniversary. yes, we have reached the point where a weekday lunch is sufficient to celebrate our love for each other. but it was a REALLY good lunch, so it totally was romantic and awesome.


[please excuse the giant pile of clothes.]

how far along: 20 weeks. (looks i’m on the every month update plan for now…)

i’m feeling: pretty dang great! i’ve started to work out again, my energy lasts all the way until a fairly reasonable bedtime, and i can (mostly) keep up with little miss Amelia. i’m even playing golf in my work league this summer (although not very well) it’s wonderful to feel wonderful instead of crappy. we’re all very much happier in our house because of it.

total weight gain: 11 pounds. i looked back at my old updates to see where i’m at in comparison to my last pregnancy. apparently i was at about 12 pounds gained at 24 weeks. so with this amount at 20 weeks, i’m about a month ahead of where i was last time. this is probably due to more fluid retention because HOLY FOOT SWELLING the other day. it could definitely also be due to the mass amounts of snyder’s pretzel bites and freezies that i’ve eaten on a very regular basis in the last month. it’s anyone’s guess really. the last few days i haven’t felt as hungry as i have been the last month, so i think the crazy snacking might be tapering off soon. i’m guessing that my total gain for this pregnancy will be around the 32 pound mark (i was at 27 last time).

baby zee’s size: this week, baby is the size of a banana (10.5 oz. and 6.5 in.). i definitely can tell that the baby is getting bigger. my belly took a little break in the growth department, meaning it didn’t get TOO much bigger in the last few weeks, but it’s definitely more full of baby. does that make any sense? basically it’s just great that i’m not inflating at the rate i was the last two months.

this week: we got to see our little peanut at our ultrasound yesterday, and it was awesome. everything looked a-okay with baby, and it’s so much fun to get to see them wiggle around, and that profile! stop it! it’s too cute!

maternity clothes: hooooo boy. yes. i got a maternity stitchfix the other day, but turns out i’m super cheap and the items were just a bit too far out of my price range. i did keep one shirt, which my credit paid for, and it’s awesome (all the clothes were awesome waaaah) but i am still in desperate need of some more. thinking that next week i might try the maternity consignment place near me to see if i have any luck! also, let me just say this: i’m gonna need some new bras, which did not happen to me last time. ugh, bigger boobs are not what i needed out of this pregnancy!

sleep: surprisingly, a whole lot better in the last month. i’m still waking up around once a night, but i’m sleeping really well when i am asleep. it’s been a very refreshing experience, and i’m trying to take advantage of it as much as my night owl self will let me.

best moment this week: seeing the babe!

movement: yes! i started feeling little movements around week 18, and they have been getting progressively stronger and more noticeable. i started feeling Amelia so early, and she was very active and strong from the start, so it’s been a little odd to have a less intense movement experience this time around. but every morning and night i get little kicks and punches to remind me that baby’s there. and we did see during the ultrasound that this baby is also very active, so i’m getting ready to feel stuff all the time!

food cravings: see above re: pretzel bites and freezies. also, i had the BIGGEST craving for a malt the other night. i didn’t do anything about it because i was at home and it was 9:30pm, but man was that real. probably going to need to remedy that soon…

food aversions: nothing too crazy, but it’s been really tough to choke down my veggies. which is strange, because i really like vegetables. the “earthiness” of them just puts me off a bit right now. hoping that’ll go away at some point.

belly button in or out: i’m saying it’s still in, but really it’s probably closer to flat?

looking forward to: getting this belly out in the sun a little more now that it’s pool season. also, we’re going to start brainstorming names here soon, which is always a good time!

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fruit & flowers.

if you’ve been around the last few years (year one, year two, year three), you’ll remember that Mister Man and i celebrate our anniversary with the traditional gift rules. year four is fruit/flowers.

wedding us

i think i understand why the gift for the 4th anniversary is fruit and flowers. the 4th year flies by. the 4th year is full of life and work and family and sometimes even pregnancies and lost babies and crazy toddlers. the 4th year feels heavy and light at the same time, full of both newness and familiarity.

and so the flowers and fruit – sweet and fresh – they are a tender and quiet reminder that living life produces beautiful things all on its own. we need that reminder, don’t we? because not every anniversary feels momentous for its own sake. because sometimes life keeps you from seeing your growth, but even so, that life is a gift in and of itself. growth happens whether you’re paying attention or not, and if you’re lucky, you get to grow with someone who produces beautiful fruit and flowers that make you smile down to your very soul.

wild game

I’m lucky to get to grow with this guy. Mister Man is everything that i never knew i needed in a husband, a friend, a partner and a co-parent to our children. i don’t know how he does it, but with each year that passes he somehow manages to become more self-giving and hardworking. here i am just trying to keep it together, and he makes sure that our family is thriving. and he does it all with a smile (well, mostly…there’s an appropriate amount of sass mixed in there too!).

going from just the two of us living in an apartment together in 2012, to owning a house, to raising our sweet Amelia, to going through losses, to expecting our baby zee – that’s a lot of growth for any couple to handle. and the sad reality is that many can’t handle it. many marriages crumble when life gets a little crazy. but we are here still loving each other more than we did on our wedding day four years ago, through many prayers, endless conversations, and the grace of God.

joe and amelia2

if the last two years of marriage with a kid has been any indication, year five is going to fly by with two of them. and that’s okay, because we’ll be flying through it together. hopefully able to take a step back once in a while and appreciate as much of it as we can.

Mister Man: thanks for always cooking dinner with me, for being the best dad and husband in the world, for putting up with my snoogle, and for making this life of ours so much fun to live. i hope that i make you laugh as much as you make me laugh, and i hope that i am loving you half as well as you’re loving me.

mister man and me

love & sugar.

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naps cure everything, even when they’re not yours.

you guys. yesterday was such a weird, weird day. it was the epitome of everything a monday is, but you wish it wasn’t. i haven’t had one of those days in so long, so this was really just a kick in the pants. not in a good way.

by noon, the following had happened:

  • i changed a very poopy diaper.
  • i fought with a toddler over whether or not she would eat her own cereal or her dad’s.
  • i succumbed to turning on barney at 8:30am.
  • i tipped a garbage can full of coffee grounds and coupons behind the radiator while vacuuming.
  • i dropped a cork into the coffee maker’s water well (don’t ask).
  • i dragged a cranky toddler to the grocery store (where she behaved like an angel somehow).

BY NOON.

but you know what? if there’s one thing that i’ve learned from being a mom, it’s that everything is temporary. and sometimes it’s so temporary that when you put your toddler down for a nap, everything gets better. you get all the chores done during the nap, you get a little workout from said chores, and you get a chance to sit down and eat lunch by yourself. then when your toddler wakes up 2.5 hours later, she’s magically cured of all crankiness and you have a dance party in the kitchen while waiting for daddy to come home.

i’ve experienced this so many times, but some days it’s just more apparent than others; naps cure everything, even when they’re not yours. but also if they’re yours, that’s pretty great too. naptime

(and if anyone was wondering, today was so much better. especially since it ended with popcorn, fancy blood orange soda and catching up on the bachelorette.)

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