Saturday, October 22, 2011

I just had to post this again...I make it all the time!


I am the most spoiled, luckiest girl in the world!
Daniel woke up early Saturday morning and cleaned our tub, sanitized our counters, and dusted while I slept in.
We made the greatest yummy pancakes!!! While I was jumping around, listening to fun music. 



  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts (optional)



  • And I wanted to make Dan Magelby's syrup -- Even though ours was more like caramel it was soooo good!
  • 1 stick butter
    1 Cup sugar
    1 Cup buttermilk
    1 T. vanilla
    1 T. corn syrup
    ½ tsp. baking soda

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Our apartment right now

I had fun decorating our apartment yesterday. We love our blue living room! 
A few of my favorite objects are...
Hydrangeas. These ones look so real! And I really wanted to use hydrangeas for my wedding but they are way pricey. Well, I finally just bought hydrangeas but I bought ones that look and feel (just don't smell) real! 
The gold mirror -- that is from the beach cottage before the remodel (the beach cottage is where Dan and I went on our honeymoon). 
And finally, the roman shades because I made them! It was such a fun experience finding the perfect fabric. 
I also love the cottage-y feel. I love the modern feel; I love the formal feel and I always have trouble choosing what style to go with. But when I went home and saw our house as blue and cottage-y I thought I'd do the same in our happy home. It is so inviting and yet gives some rich color (which is needed in our home because so much is white -- which I love). 
It's funny because every time I go to the store I want to buy white and cream colored things. But it's way better to buy color-rich decorations because that's always what I want in our home is more color :)
Thanks for all the happy memories of going to Hobby Lobby and helping you decorate and seeing what is beautiful and putting things together to decorate our home beautifully Mom! I saw a mother and daughter there together yesterday and it just made me reminisce about all those fun times where we put the entire center piece together on the aisle floor. I did that yesterday too and I think people thought it was weird, but oh well! I got ALL things I love and won't need to return ANY of them! That was my goal per Danny's request (we've had trouble returning things before). 
I love having a happy home that brings the spirit and is beautiful. It is a way for me to "create."


One year from today...

I just read one of my best friends' blogs about how a year ago we had no idea where we'd be in 1 year. I just had a thought that in 1 year from now, we will have spent time somewhere for Danny's internship next summer and may be in Russia. I will have a nearly 6 month old baby! And other than that, I hope to have lost my pregnancy weight (or most of it :)). I hope to have a happy home and have built an even more strong relationship with Danny. Thank goodness I can say that much -- that's the most I've been able to say about myself in a year from now at any point. But yet life seems so undefined! We will hopefully be planning a trip to Europe to go backpacking. Dan will be nearly graduated. I may or may not be graduated.  But it's fun to think about :)

Monday, October 10, 2011

My "Special Place"

I've always wondered what my special place where you go when you're "escaping" contractions.

I thought it might be on the beach with the sun shining on me in Hawaii.

Or like my mom's -- moss that you can put your feet in.

Or something from Pride and Prejudice like my new favorite painting by Paul Ferney

Isn't that beautiful?

But today when I practiced relaxing in preparation for childbirth, I tested out all these places and found one that suited me perfectly. After having bad dreams lately, I decided this place had to be a SAFE place with no concerns, nothing on my mind except how much I love Danny and this baby.

And the place my mind stuck to was our honeymoon in Monterey Bay!

It is the best of all worlds but most of all I chose it because it's when I'm most at ease, most safe. Each night, I have this special way I curl up facing Danny and he wraps me up and I know I am safe there. It's when I am most relaxed. That was my happy place! It actually delighted me :)
And we are in a cool, misty place, under a big white feather blanket with a canopy of white over the bed. Exactly like our honeymoon suite!

The beach house has soft grass and a lemon tree that's weighed down with lemons in the back yard where I can go see soft, green grass and moss. It has the sound of the ocean which is so soothing without me feeling vulnerable and exposed. The waves crashing on rocks are too cold to go jump in (which is also comforting to me)

and I can walk along the shore discovering new plants and animals
You're supposed to imagine being there with your baby and talking to your baby. I imagined showing our baby the otters and how much he/she loved the playful otters.
And I imagined walking to the farmer's market and tasting all different foods and visiting the beautiful Thomas Kinkade gallery -- just like we did!

I was shocked that that was the place I most imagined loving going!

I just love this picture -- and this wonderful man! :)

Sometimes I re-post posts I love -- Pumpkin Pancakes

I am posting these without having tried them...so hopefully they're good, but they sound just like what Danny would love -- moist. And what I would love -- pumpkin. I have to say I've never like pancakes either! I LOVE waffles a lot and would always beg the family to make waffles. They are crispy and hold more syrup in their little holes without getting soggy. But alas, we are poor college students (money's not the problem because i have a waffle maker) the problem is... with little room for extra pans that we'd use thrice a year. So Maybe I'll try pancakes one of these mornings!


TUESDAY, APRIL 12, 2011

Pumpkin...pancakes?

I feel I need to be honest here.

I don't like pancakes.  Finally. I said it.

It all started with:
A.) My undying love for cereal..how dare ANY other so-called "breakfast" food try to compete!
and
B.) Syrup sogginess.


FLASHBACK: Age 5:

This was probably around the time I began to understand the divine-ness of cereal.  Let's imagine my mother introducing pancakes to me.  The "cool" thing about pancakes is that you get to pour this sugary, maple goodness all over it, after it's been soaked in butter.  Then you dive right in. Sound delectable?  Not to me.  Here is the (possible) conversation that took place that fateful, soggy, day.

Me: Mom do I have to eat these?  It takes like a sponge. (after I've just poured half of Aunt Jemima all over my pancakes)
Mother:  April, you can't have cereal everyday for the rest of your life. It's time for something new. Something adventurous.  How will you ever be able to appreciate other cultures if you don't even like pancakes?
Me: Grossss...I think I hear the Jetson's calling my name.  Where's the dog?

So there you have it.  Pancakes and I have had a history.  And it's not been pretty.  I swore I would loathe pancakes until the day I died.  Until one day...

FLASH FORWARD: Age 28

Yesterday.  I had a leftover can of Pumpkin Puree from when Sarah and I were into a "Mookies" obsession.  "Mookies" are delicious muffins that look like cookies..you should try them. 
So anyway, this can of P.P just kept staring at me until finally I decided I just had to do something with it.  I was flipping through the "Parents" magazine when I came across a recipe for...Pumpkin Pancakes.

I could at least try them.

Maybe pancakes have changed in the last 23 years. Maybe they taste better. Maybe there's no soggy syrup or calorie laden butter involved.  Maybe, just maybe.  Plus, I loved that it was under the "Healthy Eating" section and they added, "Veggies for breakfast? Yes!" Most of you think that sounds anything BUT good..not me. I thought it sounded delicious!  Then again, I feel that pumpkin could make anything taste good.  Even pancakes.

The result was astounding.  A hallelujah chorus sang.  My heart leapt with joy.  Mitt Romney became President.  Seriously I believe these pancakes are miracle-workers.

Only Mitt Romney did not actually become President. Yet.

You will want to try these.  For Shiz.  They are moist and pumpkin-y (but not too much) and Andrew said this morning that they were so good he didn't even need syrup.  Miracle.

Here they are..adapted from "Parents" magazine:

Pumpkin Pancakes:

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 T. maple syrup ( hint: if you put it IN the batter they don't get soggy!)
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
2 T. unsalted butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 T. cinnamon
1/3 cup canned pumpkin

Add ingredients dry to wet.  Use 1/4 cup to put batter on skillet.  Make sure pan is hot before adding batter.  Allow to cook 3-4 min on each side.  I doubled the batch so Andrew could grab some for breakfast on his way to school.  Store remaining, uneaten, tasty pancakes in airtight container or ziplock bag. Place in fridge.  Will stay good for about 5 days.  But they prob won't last that long :)

So there you have it.  The true story about how I came to like pancakes.  Add some pumpkin, hold the butter and syrup.  Become a believer.
http://aamcquay.blogspot.com/2011/04/pumpkinpancakes.html

Friday, October 7, 2011

Anti-clutter

I am very anti-clutter. Though I love my things, I hate having them out of place. I love seeing open spaces and walls.
My freshman year, I had one picture on my wall in my entire dorm room -- no tack boards or posters or sayings or calendars, just one picture. And on my desk I had a collage of things I loved such as quotes, a favorite picture with each of my parents, and then a few framed pictures on the top shelf. No pens out on the desk, not even my school notebooks. They were all tucked away out of sight in their proper places. I love love loved it!
My roommates thought I was crazy!

Flash forward 5 years...I'm pregnant and that means you're tired and you have more stuff; but I cherish the moments when my home is uncluttered, everything in its space. If I ever get to spend an hour throwing away miscellaneous papers, I just LOVE the feeling! IT's so freeing! I love simplifying and getting rid of things.

Today I read a post that really made me think Unstyled Life 
I especially love this part: "You’ve heard time and again that you can’t take it with you, that in the end the stuff doesn’t matter. You know that, logically, because it’s an obvious truth. But until you pull every lastthing from the recesses of an empty home and lay it out to catalog, you really have no idea.
Old tubes of mascaras. Eyeshadows. Almost empty bottles of aspirin. Expired lotions. Moth eaten sweaters. Uncomfortable sofas. Bills, paid and unpaid. Unread books. Shirts that don’t fit, are no longer in style, or you never really liked. Someone will one day run their hands over your possessions and make an assumption you won’t be there to refute.
I find it disconcerting that someone will find an empty Impressionist address book on my desk and wonder when I became a fan of C├ęzanne when, in truth, it was a gift from a friend I will never use. If they open my hall closet by the front door, what will they think of my piles of art and ill-fitting coats? Surely those who love me will realize I only wear the red one, even though it’s three sizes too big. And what does it say that I never took the time to alter a coat so that it fits my form in a flattering way, that I let the cuffs drag my knuckles and the waist swing wildly when I walk?
They will open my makeup drawer, pause, and then say, “I don’t remember her ever wearing green eyeshadow.”"
I love this other lady's thoughts on simplifying -- her blog has so many ideas of how to de-clutter. This post is one that made me think as we are acquiring baby stuff and thinking of moving a few times before we have a second baby.