Tuesday, December 23, 2014


Christmas is a couple days away now and as I've gone through Facebook, Instagram, etc over the last couple weeks I've found myself thinking about what traditions we will start/have for our little one.  I've had a board on Pinterest for awhile now titled Husband. Wife. Family. Traditions because I think traditions are important especially around the holidays.  However, I don't think we need to be so stuck in a box and some years it will be ok if we end up straying from the norm.

As a married couple Jarad and I already have a couple traditions.  The weekend before Christmas we travel to a friend's Grandparent's lake house in Orange, Texas.  We hang out, eat, shoot skeet, be merry, etc and sometimes the girls slip away to the next town over in Louisiana to get nachos and gamble a $20 bill away.   We call this tradition "Misfit Christmas" and anybody is welcome to attend if they are free.  Most people aren't free because they have family events and such to attend to and hence the name Misfit Christmas.  We love this tradition and look forward to it every year.

The other tradition Jarad and I have is Christmas day we go and see a movie in the afternoon and then I cook steak and scallops for dinner.  I typically try different methods of preparing the scallops but I think this year just some good ol' seared scallops sound perfect.  Why mess up a good thing?  And our steaks are from a Rodeo Champion steer that Jarad was gifted from work.  I have shrimp in the freezer already so Twice baked shrimp stuffed potatoes are also on the menu.  It's a Paula Deen recipe and so you know it's good.  We had those a couple years back.

These traditions hopefully will continue even with Peyton in the mix but I can't wait to add some additional ones.  What will our Christmas Eve look like?  Christmas morning tradition?  The weeks leading up to Christmas?  Will we go see the lights at Santa's Wonderland in College Station every year?  Where will we take her to see Santa each year?  Will we pick out an ornament as a family each year to add to our tree?  It makes me smile and my heart very happy to think about what things will be like.  I can hardly wait but as Jarad said yesterday "It's just you and me, our miniature family for now."  So we will continue to enjoy this last holiday season as just the two of us.

What are some things you look forward to during the holidays?  Do you have traditions or do you like to change it up every year?

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

His and Hers

The seating in the living room...well most of our rooms was limited.  We have a couch and a giant bean bag.  I've never been a fan of the bean bag but Jarad loves it and so does Petey. 

Jarad had also wanted a recliner for the living room but he was not going to part with the bean bag.  For awhile I thought we would have to move the bean bag to another room but where? or heaven forbid get rid of it.  But I knew a recliner in the living room would come in handy when the baby arrives.  So for the last couple of months, I've been working on Jarad with the plan of adding a recliner which wasn't the issue.  The issue was getting rid of the bean bag.  It wasn't going very smoothly and I wasn't sure I was going to able convince him.  But last week I started rearranging the furniture in my head and I figured out a plan that would allow us to have both a recliner and a bean bag. 

After I let him in on my idea he suggested we go look at recliners Saturday and well we purchased a recliner on Sunday.  Jarad picked it up yesterday and I sat in it all evening yesterday.

It's really his recliner because I picked out a lovely glider for the nursery that he wasn't a fan of but I think is perfect for rocking the baby and to use while breastfeeding.

The two chairs definitely look like his and hers versions and are going to come in super handy once the baby arrives.  Recliner mission completed

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Pete and Peyt

I've read several articles about helping a pet transition to having a little one in the house.  It's something we are going to have to work on.  Right now Petey gets all our attention when ever he wants.  He has horrible separation anxiety and you better pet him when he nudges your hand.  And don't stop till he says you can.   You better make sure his food and water are full or you will find the bowls all over the kitchen when you come home.

If he wants on my lap, I allow him.  He can even use the tv tray as a headrest. 

But he's just the cutest.  Maybe as cute as his cousin Harper....

I had gotten some baby clothes that I was going through and he just was having it. 

Having a baby in the house is going to be a huge change for us all and especially Petey.  We will have a lot to figure out with both of them but I can't help but think that Petey will be the best big brother. Yea I'm turning into that mom and human mom and there is no difference between the two...for now.

Monday, December 15, 2014


Sometimes I feel like the whole 9 months of pregnancy is a test or foreshadowing of what's to come with a baby.  Except I really don't know what's to come and that's frightening in and of itself.  We were suppose to have our childbirth preparation class on Saturday.  It had been scheduled for a couple months.  We had to be up early to get their by 8:30.  We get there on time and by 8:50 when the security guard and hospital police officer said it was very unusual for the lady not to have been there by 7:45 we knew we had been stood up.  Now we had the rest of the day until a Holiday cookie party that night with nothing planned.  And Jarad was like....

I like plans.  I try not to get bent out of shape when things don't go as planned but it kind of just throws me off.  As we drove away from the hospital Jarad asked me if I was sad.  I wasn't sad I was disappointed, aggravated and frustrated.  If you say you are going to do something, do it or call and let me know.  I know there will be tons of surprises that come along with parenthood and I'm trying...learning to go with the flow a little more.

and later Jarad practiced holding a baby
and playing the part of Santa....vacation Santa that is



Monday, December 8, 2014

The Holidays are underway

I knew I hadn't posted in a little while but I didn't realize it had been that long.  oops  The holidays are in full swing.  Thanksgiving was more of a Friendsgiving.  If we don't go camping in the frigid cold..ok we only did that last year... we go to our friends' place.  It's a great mix of friends and family for them.  I made a recipe from Plain Chicken, Bubble Up Pecan Pie.  I added dark chocolate chunks because everything is better with chocolate.  The only thing I regret this Thanksgiving was not having another piece of this.

On the Friday after Thanksgiving, Natalie, Drew and I travelled north for the day.  We visited our aunt, uncle, cousin and his family.  I got to snuggle with a cute little boy.  I have to get my practice in where I can.

Then a stomach bug hit our house this past Thursday.  Jarad got it first and then Friday late afternoon it hit me.  I felt like crap all weekend but tried to make the best of it.  We don't have many weekends of just us and easily going and doing things.  So I rested up Saturday the best I could between a few errands and then got myself ready for a friends' annual Ugly Sweater Christmas party.  I ended up having a good time but getting home at 2am was too much.  And the heartburn till 3am didn't help. Jarad says I do too much and don't rest enough.  hmmmm maybe I'll start and see how that works out for the household.


Christmas decorations went up last week.  Everything is pretty much the same set up with the exception of a few additions.  Jarad and I picked out a stocking for Peyton on Saturday as part of our errands.  Pretty sure we got one of the biggest available at Hobby Lobby but why not?!?!

She also has a few ornaments from GiGi on the tree already.  We got the cute stocking one at a store called The Round Top Collection.  I loved seeing all their Christmas stuff and can't wait to see what they have for the rest of the year.

Three years ago I also started getting a nutcracker every year.  This year we added a cowboy one.

We have a few more things planned for the holidays but I am also going to try to slow down a bit...maybe. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Friday Musings

The great thing as always is...IT'S FRIDAY!!!!

Going to the Nutcracker Market tomorrow and I'm pretty excited about that.  Take your favorite boutique, shop, etc and multiple it times a million and that's what you have for this market.  It's a
woman's dream and a great girl afternoon out type thing.

It's been chilly here this week.  That means sweaters, jackets, the heater and I don't have to remember to put bottled water from the garage to fridge.  I've tried finding a reusable bottle or cup that I could take with me everyday and all of the one's I've tried come up short in some fashion.  Or it's just so easy to grab some bottles before heading out the door.  We drink filtered water from the fridge at home as our help to Mother Earth or Mother Nature or whatever you want to call her.
This summer we started a brunch group called the Rowdy Loafers Brunch Bunch.  Why the name Rowdy Loafers you ask? When we were putting together the group there was a special on PBS of the History of Houston.  They talked about this group and well we inherited it.  No we don't plan to do what they did and we definitely don't need a hanging to stop us from going to brunch but it's a fun quirky tie to Texas/ Houston history. "Houston? An image problem? Nothing new there. Back in 1838, when the city amounted to little more than a dozen offal-strewn streets, it had an image problem. Swarms of unemployed young men — "rowdy loafers" in the parlance of the day — made life miserable for respectable folk. They drank, they whored, they fought, they punctuated the night with their raucous clamors. Houston was the capital of the new Republic of Texas, for chrissakes, yet people across the Sabine in the United States might be forgiven for thinking it a den of yahoos.")
Natalie and I wrote a poem using Oh, The Places you'll Go as the base or whatever the fancy literary term would be for that.
Oh, the brunch places we'll go!

Sunday is our day.
We're off to new places,
Wherever we may. ...

We want food in our belly.
We have glasses to fill.
We can try any cafe
Or restaurant at will.
We're not on our own. And we may cause a show.
But we are the ones who'll decide where we go.
At first we tried to go every month but it's more of an every other month thing where we get together to try a different place in town.  There are so many great restaurants in Houston and this is an effort to get ourselves out of a rut of going to the same places. Plus who doesn't like brunch and hanging out with your friends.  Sunday we are heading to Liberty Kitchen and Oyster Bar for our Fall Brunch.
What are your plans this weekend?!?! Hope it's a good one.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

It's a...

A little over two weeks ago we had a doctor's appointment that was met with much anticipation.  It was our ultrasound that would measure Baby Upham to make sure everything was progressing correctly and healthy but we would also find out if Baby U was a boy or girl.

Neither of us slept much the night before.  I was so glad that I had made the appointment first thing in the morning.   I drank the little bit of orange juice we had left as I had read that it would help make sure your little one was active enough to get all the necessary shots.

We got to the doctor's office a tad before our appointment.  It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown was playing on the tv in the waiting room.  I don't think I've ever seen the whole thing and still haven't. I guess baby and I can do that together one day. There was a mother and daughter speaking what Jarad said was Vietnamese....I had no idea he was such a pro at differentiating between Asian languages.  But I was so glad when they were called back because the rambling on and on that I couldn't understand was driving me crazy.  I knew scans could take awhile but they were in and out in 10 minutes.  Thank goodness...I had to go to the bathroom.  I asked the Ultrasound tech if I could go to the bathroom but because I was only 18 weeks she asked that I wait till after the scan.  "Sure no problem...I guess"  is what I thought but it wasn't going to be comfortable...but is pregnancy ever really comfortable?!?! 

Before long I had the cold jelly on my belly and our sweet baby was on the screen.  The tech measured, gave little anecdotes here and there but a big smile came across our faces when she said "that's your daughter."  Jarad was sure our baby was a boy but I think most guys want a boy because it is what they are comfortable with, know, and understand.  She gave us several pictures from different angles and of her different body parts. At the end of the scan Miss Thing covered her face with her hands as to say she had had enough. She also stretched out her legs kicking me square in the bladder. Really?!?!  The scan didn't take as long as I thought and we were on our way and I was able to use the bathroom.  Thank the heavens.

As we walked out of the building Jarad took his favorite pic to have in his truck. He also said, "man, I thought we were going to have the next JJ Watt. I guess a super model will do."  I responded with "a super model who marries the next JJ Watt." We both agreed that idea sounded fantastic and are excited to have a baby girl no matter what she becomes. And her Daddy will keep her well protected. 

When we first found out we were pregnant Jarad talked about getting the baby a pair of boots. So we drove straight to Cavender's and got the baby the cutest pink pair of boots. They are on display in the nursery and ready for her to wear but first they were how we announced to social media that we are having a girl. 

I also played a song for Jarad that he had heard but never really listened to the words. He downloaded it immediately and plays it often. The one other given besides the boots is that she will have a pink fishing pole. 
To say we are even more excited now is an understatement.  We are trying to enjoy our time as just the two of us but can't wait till March.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Start of the Nursery - Book Crate

I was pretty anxious to start the nursery as soon as we found out we were pregnant.  However, I knew we had plenty of time and didn't want to do a completely gender neutral design.  I was able to fight the urge for the most part.  And now that we are a couple weeks shy of halfway and we find out whether Baby Upham is a boy or girl this week, the nursery is mentally planned.  There were a couple things that I wanted to do that would go no matter the sex of the baby.  Plus this would fill the need to work on the nursery and got me past my urges.  So a couple Sundays ago while we watched football, I set out to make my version of these that I had found on Pinterest.

I found the crate at JoAnn's but I think Michael's and possibly Hobby Lobby has them as well.  The nursery colors will be black, white and red with a fourth color to be determined by the sex.  I did my best to get the red paint for the crate as close as I could to the curtains I had found at Walmart.  I think the crate ended up by a little brighter than the curtains but think the other elements of the room will allow them to blend just fine.  It's hard to match paint and fabrics and I don't think I would ever find an exact match.  The crate took about 3 coats of paint to cover nicely.

I cut the letters out with my Cricut and it took several attempts to determine the size that would look best.  I traced them on to the crate with a pencil and then used a smaller brush to paint in the letters.  

I got a piece of wood from JoAnn's that I cut in half with my handy jig saw to add to the bottom of the crate.  The actual wood of the crate needed a little more depth for the wheels to be attached with screws that would hold.  

The project cost probably around $20 to complete.  I thought I was going to get away with around $15 or less but the wheels cost more than I anticipated.  

We already have several books for Baby U and some toys from Cousin Harper.  It took about two weeks before I found one of the toys outside the crate.  Petey has his own box of toys and now he has to learn that this isn't his box too.   However, for now he thinks this is his room and loves to hang out in there.  I have all faith that he's going to be a great big brother which he must think includes being a guard dog.  

Monday, October 13, 2014


- all cheese enchiladas should have beans in them...they won't be cheese enchiladas anymore but become bean and cheese enchiladas. I made some last Friday. Delicious. Cheese and bean and cheese enchiladas should also always have fresh onions on top.

- when it's windy and you go shopping and you don't put your grocery cart back in the cart holding space...whatever it's called...something should happen to you or your car....not sure what that is yet

- weather should emulate this week's weather at all times

Friday, October 10, 2014

Parenthood...not just a tv show to us anymore

Sometimes you make conscious decisions that are forever going to change your direction in life.  We have made one of those and we are going to be parents.  We had several conversations over the last couple years that we weren't going to have kids...or at least that's how I interpreted them.  We were going to be content being selfish and living life to fullest, travelling and just being us.  However, at the end of last year Jarad came to me upset and with a strong desire to be a dad.  So we talked about it, and talked about it, talked about it some more, made a plan and voila the little one will be here in March.  People have told us you will never be ready for kids, nothing with this chapter in life goes according to plan, etc  No we probably aren't ready for how our life will change but we'll fake it till we make it.  Things have gone according to plan... so far... knock on wood.  Waiting on that curve ball to be thrown but let's hope not. So now we are using the next 9 months...well we only have about 6 months spend as much time together just being us, having fun, getting ready best we can, making lots of decisions (daycare, pediatrician, nursery theme, etc).  We are super excited for all that parenthood entails and can't wait to find out in two weeks if we will have a little girl or boy.

Petey wanted to help announce...ok I forced the photo.  I wish there was someone filming us when trying to get this pic.  Petey really wasn't having it but shortly obliged because his favorite treat was at stake.
a few outtakes
Howling...out of excitement for the baby or defiance...not sure

If you want my picture I'm laying down.  I'm done.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Chocolate frosted donuts

I did a scientific experiment this week.... but on more thought I only tried two places so I'm not sure how experimental it is. So I guess it's better to say I compared two chocolate frosted donuts this week, one from Dunkin' Donuts and one from Shipley's. Based on my research... oh wait .... I mean based on my opinion the Shipley's donut was better. The Shipley's donut was a lighter, airy donut in texture but the frostings were similar.


Dunkin' Donuts

Now if Krispy Kreme had already got their butts back to Houston I would have tried theirs as well. Once that happens, which it's suppose to supposedly, I will have to reevaluate my opinion. But for now when I have a hankering for a chocolate frosted donut I will bypass Dunkin' and find my man Shipley. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Eat your fruits and vegetables

We've all heard to eat your fruits and vegetables a million times. For the most part I do a good job of it. I don't mind most fruits and vegetables and even crave them at times. But when I saw a new fruit and veggie bar by Dreyer's on a blog I read I wanted to try. 

 A) who doesn't like a cold treat in the Texas summer heat 
 B) who doesn't like a new way to get your nutrients 
 C) the blogger said they were delicious 

I tried finding them at my Kroger and although they had a bunch of the Dreyer's fruit and cocunut milk bars they didn't have the fruit and veggie ones. I had to stop by Target for a couple things and checked there. Low and behold they had them. I picked up the Apples and Greens but this Target (not a super Target) also had blueberry medley and tangerine carrot. On Dreyer's website I saw that they also have strawberry rhubarb and peach mango medley. 

I tore into the box as soon as I got to the car. It was delicious and only 60 calories. Much better for me than the mozzarella sticks I was craving. Typically I would finish the box I have before I try other flavors but I'm not going to lie I may get the others so I can have some variety. So if you struggle to get in your fruits and vegetables and even if you don't, these bars are a great little treat. I'm hoping the Kroger by the house will eventually have them but I will drive the 5 miles to Target to get them.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Another Birthday, another year

The last two weekends have been filled with absolutely nothing and it has been great.  We've watched movies. Hung out low key with friends.  And this past Sunday we celebrated my birthday.  The only plan on the agenda was dinner with friends at a restaurant that I had been wanting to try, Fadi's Mediterranean Grill.  It was delicious in my opinion.  I could go there and just do a vegetarian sampler platter.  The sides were my favorite. They have a drive through at the location we went to.  I see many stops there in my future.  Natalie made the strawberry pretzel salad that I have been craving.  It was a perfect alternative to cake.

My birthday was on National Lazy Day.  I celebrated that too.  It was the largest super moon of the year.  It was also Antonio Banderas and Kylie Jenner's birthday.  The Smithsonian was started or something on the 10th years ago.  I'm sure there are other great things that happened on that day because well it's fantastic.

So now I continue on and embrace being 32!!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

August already?!?!

The summer has flown by.  Between work and play all I want to do is sleep because it seems all we do is go, go, go.  Since I was a kid I have always been a fan of sleep.  I get "hangry" but you mix in sleepy with that and you better stay far far away.  Already this summer we have done a little traveling and even became World Record holders.  

We camped on the beach in June.  I had never done that and wanted to at least once.  The sand rain was enough to require a beach house from now on or I guess the rain guard on the tent would have been a good idea.

In July we travelled to Kentucky with our friends, Katrina and Thomas.  It was a great mix of visiting with family, introducing Katrina and Thomas to that area of the country and just plain fun.  The weather was unseasonabbly cool.  

Then we went on our annual trip to the river and on a weekend when Roger Creager was holding his birthday bash.  This year he wanted to break a record of the largest river flaot.  Previous float was 250 people in one of those states you forget about.  We slammed the record.  I don't even know what the offical count was but Rockin' R had 3000 tubes and they ran out.  

We don't have much planned the rest of the summer but low key is alright with me.  I am looking forward to a trip to the beach with my sisters at the end of this month but first we must celebrate my birthday.  It's August 10th if you forgot.