Monthly Archives: February 2012

WIAW + Apple Pie Barley Bowl

Okay, that’s it… I’m joining the WIAW party. I cannot resist any longer. It seems like fun! Unfortunately, today isn’t going to be the best day. This week at work has been hectic! The students (and myself!) were out all last week for Winter Break, and we have had so much catching up to do. So I’ll post a What I Ate Last Wednesday breakdown. 🙂 Thanks to Jenn from Peas and Crayons for hosting a first-timer like myself!


For breakfast I had a barley bowl. I was out of oats (the horror!) and needed a quick sub. Let me just say, I’m impressed! I’d had a bag of pearled barley for longer than I’d like to admit. I’d just been too lazy to actually use it. In the end, my breakfast was something I’ll definitely be making again.

Apple Pie Barley Bowl


  • 1/2 an apple, cored and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter, margarine, or Earth Balance
  • 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon and apple pie spice (or to taste)
  • 1/3 cup barley
  • 1 cup water


  1. Add butter , apple pieces, and spices to a small saucepan and saute over medium heat.
  2. When the apples begin to soften, add barley and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until all water has been absorbed.
  3. Serve it up hot… Tastes best over greek yogurt, I promise!


My mid-morning snack was a greek yogurt bowl with cherries, peanut butter, and Kashi Island Vanilla cereal. Random, but delicious! I ate this bowl while watching my dog hump his best friend, Remy. Romantic.


For lunch I had a black bean quesadilla with onions, cheese, tomatoes, jalapenos, and taco seasoning. I served it up with some yogurt and salsa for dipping and a salad for some extra veggies. My salad was topped with Annie’s Goddess Dressing. One of my faves! I usually don’t have such heavy lunches right after snacking, but apparently Baby M had other plans. I was starving!


Dinner was another win. I posted the recipe for this Roasted Tomato, Basil, and Goat Cheese Pasta the other day. Let’s just say a monkey could make it. It’s so easy and so perfectly simple!

I just realized that I should have titled this the “Around the World WIAW” because I included America (hello, apple pie!), Mexico, and Italy. Man, I’m so cultured. 😉

Now, hopefully I can get off my butt after work today and get moving. I’m still considering running a 5k, so I need to get myself (and the belly) ready!


Positive Changes + Race Temptation

The past few days have been going really well for me. I’ve been feeling more energized, healthy, and more like myself. I think working on my eating habits and working out are really making a difference. If there is one thing I have learned so far, it is that it’s never too late to make a change. I assumed that it would be much more difficult to get back on track during this pregnancy, but it has actually been an easier change. Obviously, a lot of that has to do with the disappearance of my morning sickness (hallelujah!) and the return of my energy. (The second trimester was cruel to me in the beginning, but it is definitely showing all the signs of letting up now!)

Now that I’m feeling much better, I’m starting to have some urges I haven’t had for a while. The first was the urge to run again. The second urge I’ve been having is the urge to race! I don’t know if this is normal, but I really want a chance to take part in another race during this pregnancy. I had a great time during the RnR Half in Savannah, and I really want a chance to do something exciting again!

There are a few things that have me seriously considering racing. 1.) I would be running a 5k, which is a distance I’d be comfortable with. 2.) It would be local. 3.) Ryne would run it with me. 4.) I’d be running for fun, so there would be absolutely no pressure. I also have decided that if I sign up for the race, I must also be fully prepared to either walk it or not participate at all. I’m just so hopped up on veggies right now that I want to RUN! 😉 (Seriously though, I feel like I look like the potato right now…)


Now I have a question for y’all: What would YOU do? I want to hear as many opinions as possible!

Roasted Tomato, Basil, and Goat Cheese Pasta

Lately I’ve been losing my mind. I’ve gotten into my car without remembering my shoes, I’ve put my camera in the refrigerator (seriously?!), and I’ve “lost” the remote more times than I can count. It’s getting out of control. Obviously, I’ve not been capable of much. This is the perfect dinner for those nights when you’re lost in space. It’s fool-proof. And also happens to be delicious. Win, win. Any recipe that calls for only a handful of ingredients is a recipe I can work with.

The process isn’t difficult, either.  Love. The fewer the dishes the better. Remember, I’m not capable of much.

Honestly, if you’ve looked at the pictures you probably don’t need much more information. Just humor me and pretend you’ll read this recipe. 🙂

Roasted Tomato, Basil, and Goat Cheese Pasta

Ingredients (makes 8 small servings):

  • 1 box angel hair pasta
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup EVOO
  • 3/4 cup pine nuts
  • 4 oz crumbled chevre cheese
  • handful of fresh basil


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Halve the tomatoes and place them in a small baking dish along with the olive oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes until tomatoes are starting to darken and slightly shrivel up.
  3. While your tomatoes are roasting, prepare the pasta according to directions. If you plan to toast your pine nuts, do so at this time in a separate pan. Drain pasta and return to the pot.
  4. Add roasted tomatoes and olive oil to the pasta and stir to combine.
  5. Serve immediately and top with basil, cheese, and pine nuts.
  6. Stir up your bowl, watch the creamy cheese become a sauce, and marvel at your ability to actually accomplish something. 😉

Pounding the Pavement

Yeah, I pounded it alright… similar to how an elephant would I suppose. I’m sure I looked hilarious.

Yesterday afternoon I stuffed my huge belly into my pre-pregnancy workout gear, laced up, and hit the road. It felt SO good to get outside again. There really isn’t anything in the world like running, in my opinion. It just feels good. I missed it! I ran two slow miles and walked a little to warm up/cool down. I noticed that my hand kept gravitating toward my belly while I ran. Is that normal? It’s like I subconsciously wanted to hold it in place. Odd.

Run number 1 in the books. Now I just have to keep it up! It’s funny how hitting “publish” can give you the motivation you need to get up and get out there. I just posted yesterday morning about my lack of exercise while pregnant. I guess it was just the kick in the butt I needed. I’m going to try to run at least a couple times a week now. I will be much, much happier… I can already tell.

Prior to my run, I decided that I better fuel up if I was going to actually survive. Breakfast was an egg scramble with basil and tomato. Served up next to a slice of whole wheat toast with goat cheese.

Apparently my cravings for basil, tomato, pine nuts, and goat cheese were not completely satisfied… because I included them in my lunch as well. Wednesday night I made a simple pasta dish and devoured the leftovers for lunch. Some people hate leftovers. I love them something serious. I don’t get bored with flavors easily (obviously). The cheese gets all nice and creamy when you stir it up. Is it possible to OD on cheese? I feel like I could. (There isn’t a huge amount of brain power behind this dish, but I’ll post the recipe soon…)

And as if that wasn’t enough, I also had a few Kashi Island Vanilla cereal squares dipped in peanut butter. Which I think someone might have been jealous of…

Dinner was inspired by my pre-run snack. Bring on the PB! Seriously this is how I eat now. One meal just gets me thinking of the next… I repeat ingredients like it’s my job! Thankfully I don’t have a food blog, because I would bore the pants off of you. Is that even an expression?! Anyway, dinner was a banana roll-up with honey, cinnamon, and mountains of peanut butter… All warm and gooey-fied. Odd dinner choice, but it was goooooood!

Overall, I’d say yesterday was a successful “get back on track” day if I do say so myself. Let’s hope I can make today just as good!

Sincerely, Reality

Dear Presley,

I know you have big dreams of being an all-star pregnant woman. You want to eat whole foods, run everyday, and be an all-around hot mama. Guess what? It ain’t happenin’!


Reality 🙂

Okay. I’m dramatic. But I really do feel like I’ve been smacked in the face with a huge dose of pregnancy reality. I always pictured myself as one of those girls who breezes through pregnancy… with a cute little basketball belly. But that’s just not how it has been for me.

I had big plans for myself. Which, looking back, the word “plans” shouldn’t have even been in my vocabulary. You just can’t make plans for a huge change like this. Pregnancy is physical, mental, emotional… the list goes on. You just can’t be prepared.

I had always been sure I would be able to continue with my normal routine. Eat right, workout, you name it. At first, it seemed like this might be the case!

Reality was about to wipe that smirk right off my face! About two weeks before I found out I was pregnant, Ryne and I ran our first 5K. We went with a few friends, partied it up in Charleston, and ran the race for fun. Through some miracle, we ended up placing first in our respective age/sex categories (yes, it was a very small race).

Our first race was in the books! And it felt great. After we found out I was pregnant, we started debating whether or not we should run the half-marathon we had planned. In the end, we decided that I was prepared enough to attempt it.  We ran the Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon in Savannah, GA when I was around 7-8 weeks. It was amazing!

After running two successful races, I was sure I could keep it up. Unfortunately, my body had other plans. Morning sickness to be exact. I could barely function, let alone run. To top it all off, fresh veggies repulsed me. What did I crave? Chips. Sprite. French Fries. Anything with no color or nutritional value. (Thank God for prenatal vitamins.) I was sick, but I was gaining weight rapidly. The only thing that kept me from puking was snacking. How cruel, right? I ate junk all day, everyday. When chips and Sprite wouldn’t do the trick, I had Jolly Ranchers to keep me company. I felt horrible and looked horrible. Mentally I was already over being pregnant.

Now I’ve been feeling so much better, so I hope I can get on track. I’ve already been eating MUCH better. Now I just need to get moving! If you mamas have any tips on getting back into working out after a long break, please let me know!


Baby M: 22 Weeks

Our baby boy is 22 weeks. Time is flying right now… it seems like just yesterday we found out we were going to be parents. Man, I feel old! 😉

What’s baby up to? According to MSN Health, “The senses your baby will use to learn about the world are developing daily. Taste buds have started to form on the tongue, and the brain and nerve endings are formed enough so that the fetus can feel touch. Your baby may experiment with this newfound sense of touch by stroking his or her face or sucking on a thumb, as well as feeling other body parts and seeing how they move.”

I just die picturing him playing around in there. Too funny. I also learned he is about 11 inches long and weighs close to a pound. Although, I think he is probably a little bigger than that by now, because he was nearing that weight a few weeks ago! My husband, Ryne, is 6’4″ so I hope Baby M inherits some of his size… however, from the birthing aspect that could be potentially brutal. Ryne weighed 10 lbs at birth!

I could ramble on for days about the things that are happening right now with me, but let us just put it in list format, shall we? (I copped Madeline‘s style and used many of her topics. Such a cheater, I know.)

Weeks: 22 weeks

Total Weight Gain: I’ll update after our doctor’s appointment tomorrow! 🙂 Let’s just say, I’m well into the double digits. (Update: My official 22 week weight gaine: 22 pounds! I had only gained four pounds in the last month though, so I think it’s leveling off a bit.)

My Body: No stretchmarks just yet (although I thought I spotted one the other night and cried for an hour… sad, right?) and I still have a deep abyss bellybutton!

Maternity Clothes: I’ve been wearing maternity pants/shorts/dresses; still squeezing into pre-pregnancy shirts and tanks. When I look at other people’s belly pictures, I feel huge compared to them. I’m growing the hulk in there.

Cravings: Does EVERYTHING count? Specifically speaking, I’m on a spice kick right now. Bring the heat!

Sleep: What is sleep? Where can I buy some of that? Between my sciatic nerve, Baby M playing the bongos on my bladder, and my dog tossing and turning all night… I really don’t get much shut eye.

Baby Items Bought/Received: Crib… Our first baby purchase!

Best Baby Moment: Ryne can regularly feel Baby M’s kicks now. So cute.

Goals: I really want to start working out again. After my morning sickness subsided a few weeks ago, I started walking and lightly lifting weights again with Ryne. Unfortunately, it’s been really hard to get this habit to stick. This weekend we are going to set up the treadmill, so maybe that will help give me the kick in the butt I need!

Worries: How Buddy, our puppy, will react to having a brother. I’m not exaggerating when I say that this dog is the neediest animal on the planet. At least he’s kinda cute. I love him, crooked ear and all.

Baby Update + Wedding Wednesday

I know I just announced my pregnancy, but I’m already nearing the 22nd week. I guess I should post a little update before I get too far behind. The next thing you know, I’ll be posting my birthing experience (eeek!).

Ryne and I found out relatively early on in the game that we were expecting. I just knew something was up. I started testing well over a week before I missed my period, and a few days later… BAM! There it was:

At first, we were pretty shocked. We weren’t actively trying (we just stopped actively trying to prevent it). We knew it was in the realm of possibilities, but we never imagined it would happen so quickly! I immediately made an appointment and at 8 weeks, we saw this beautiful baby… which looks almost nothing like a baby. It’s funny how fast you can fall in love with a little beating heart.

We told our families Thanksgiving weekend after our first appointment. Our families were excited, but almost everyone was in disbelief. After all, we had only just had our wedding in June! The next few weeks were a blur of work, morning sickness, and regular check-ups. Finally, in January, we were able to see our lil’ boo again! We had our anatomy scan at 18 weeks, and SO much had changed since our last ultrasound. This time he looked a lot more like a real baby :)! And we found out that he was, in fact, a HE!

We also got a sneak peak of him in 3d/4d, which was so fun. I think he looks like me ;)!

Other than morning sickness from 8-18 weeks (which I hope is over…), I’ve had no real issues from a health stand-point. The main problem I’ve had is a complete depletion of my self-esteem. When it comes to feeling attractive, I’m running on empty. I hope this is normal and that I can get over it soon, but I’m struggling!

And to further torture myself, let’s take a look back at my wedding! Nothing like a good trip down memory lane to remind myself that I couldn’t fit in that dress right now if tried. 😉

Ryne and I got married at the Rose Hill Estate in Aiken, South Carolina. It served as the perfect backdrop for some action shots of the girls getting dolled up, the boys getting their model on, and of course all of those pretty little “extra” shots of the accessories!

more wedding makeup

getting ready fun

wedding dress 2

wedding ryne's suit

wedding bouquets

(past wedding-related posts)