Saturday, April 30, 2011

Saturday Morning at the Farmers Market

     My girlfriend Tara is in town this weekend and this morning we got up early, grabbed our canvas bags and headed to downtown Augusta for the Farmers Market that happens every Saturday on the edge of the Savannah River. Despite the storms that have been tormenting our side of the country this morning was beautiful, warm but breezy, and the market was bustling!

       There were a myriad of booths and shopping options at the market some of which were: 4 produce stands, 3 nursery (plant) booths, two bakeries, a lot of caterers, artists, etc. The most exciting table I found was a woman who sells cloth diapers! She is an independent retailer for Grow Via, Bum Genius, Rumparooz, Happy Heinys, Bamboo Booty, Fuzzibunz, and way more. She honors all online specials, and was local! She gave me tons of advice and showed me a few demonstrations!!
       I know it's tacky to talk about money, but I have got to tell you about the goods I scored! I got 5 huge tomatoes, a TON of string beans and red potatoes, the biggest ears of sweet white corn you have ever seen and gorgeous asparagus and I only spent $14!! The coolest thing is that they were all grown by local farmers, so I was supporting the community with my purchase! I will be there every Saturday I can from now on, that's for sure.
       There was some live "music" happening, too. Normally I like anything to shop by but this was a boy singing karaoke Corrine Bailey Rae and he was terrible, hopefully he isn't a regular. At the end of the market strip is the Savannah River and the scenic Riverfront Park.

This was such a great way to start my Saturday, I just hope y'all have had a beautiful day wherever you are, too! Love, Layne

Friday, April 29, 2011


Congrats to our winner! April Decheine, please respond to your email within 48hrs! Thanks to all who participated!!

Five Question Friday

This morning I've decided to participate in a 5 Question Friday! I think it's a fun thing to do to get to know one another a little better (on a non-serious note) and a great chance to visit other blogs!
If you are new to Five Question Friday, WELCOME!! I hope you enjoy yourself!

Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog post, answer them, then watch for the linky post to appear Friday morning! And (and this is the most important one) it is imperative that you HAVE FUN!! ;)

Get the linky code to add to your post at the bottom of this entry after my answers!

Questions for Friday, April 29th: (Special thanks to @gasfamily, Rachel, Lorilynne, Pam, and Sandy for their question suggestions! If YOU would like to be linked in a future 5QF, leave me a question suggestion over at my community, or shout it out to me on Twitter [@5crookedhalos]!)

1. If you could buy any car, money not an option, what would it be?

2. What was your worst first date ever?

3. How old were you when you fell in love for the first time?

4. When was the last time you reconciled your checkbook?

5. If you were going to fashion a "Wanted" Ad for a best friend, how would you word it?
Here goes nothing!!
1. Both my husband and I agree, if money wasn't an option a super nice car is not where we would spend our money. We'd rather have a ginormous house, or put it all in savings, but if I could have any car and the budget was thrown out the window I think I would choose a VW Passat, or a simple Mercedes Sedan. I like both companies a lot as far as the desing and look of their cars go. Black, leather interior, nothing super special, but definitely nicer than I would ever actually buy in the "real" world!
2. I don't know that I've ever had a "first date". The beautiful and awkward rite of courtship seems to be a thing of the past at least for my age group anyway. I met my husband in college and at that point I definitely wasn't having official dates too often. I wish I had though, I love the idea of a gentleman having to pick you and and take you out, get to know you, walk you to your that I'm married my hubby and I try and do a date night once or twice a month.
3. I was 16. There was one boy before my first love who I would have sworn I loved at the time, but love is funny, and once you're in head over heels love it's easy to see that the others were just really serious crushes. Real love is life altering. Even though I think that the memories of your first love will stick with you forever, and you will always be able to remember those feelings because they were so powerful and new, I know that your final love- the love of your life- is an even more special and powerful thing than first love. For those of you out there who haven't met the "one" yet I hope that gives you something to look forward to. I couldn't imagine a more all-consuming love than the one I have for my husband.
4. A LONG time ago. We don't write checks in our HH, we have an awesome bank credit card that we get cash back on so we charge everything and pay it off at the end of every month. It's great for our credit scores, too!
5. WANTED: Wiley Hippie, Hair down her back, probably rescuing and abandoned animal on the side of the road. May be armed with chapstick, wearing Chuck Taylors,  and listening to a Widespread Panic CD.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tune In Thursday Play-list: Bad Weather Edition

    I don't know about y'all but we got a wicked storm last night! From the little bit of news coverages I've been able to see Alabama was hit hard, and I know from my mama in Arkansas earlier this week storms were so crazy there was tennis ball size hail in some areas! As Uncle Jessie would say... Have Mercy!
      We didn't sleep at all last night at the Stalvey house. The news station called every hour with weather alerts that went something like this: If you're an idiot and can't hear the thunder and see the lightening through your window we just wanted you to know that there is a storm outside. Ok, so maybe it didn't say that exactly but while trying to sleep through the crazy loud storm and deal with a dog that now has storm anxiety thanks to the tree that came through our roof last month, that is what I felt like it was saying to me when I answered the phone at 1:30, 2:30 and then we finally cut the ringer off at 3:30 am. Due to the nights events I am at work with nasty hair, I did my make up in the bathroom when I got here, huge circles under my eyes and a nasty tude. What can I say?! I need my sleep to be remotely perky and happy.
     In honor of the dastardly storm that has put me in this mood and severely wigged out poor MoMo today's play list features songs about rain....or songs using rain as a metaphor. As you download and listen to these songs, I think you should picture me as a cartoon sitting behind my desk at work with a thunder cloud drawn over my head and rain pouring on me. If, despite the storm, you are in a good mood today, you are welcome to try and cheer me up! I am very much wanting a pick-me-up! Love, Layne

Tune In Thursday Play-List, Bad Weather Edition:

1. Ashes, the Rain, and I- Joe Walsh
2. Falling of the Rain- Billy Joel
3. Have You Ever Seen the Rain- CCR
4. Here Comes the Rain Again- The Eurythmics
5. I Made it Through the Rain- Barry Manilow
6. I'm Only Happy When it Rains- Garbage
7. Like the Rain- Clint Black (I dedicate this to Austin Culbertson)
8. No Rain- Blind Melon
9. Purple Rain- Prince
10. Rain Dance- The Guess Who

This one is for all you new bloggers... like me!!

Join this blog hop to find awesome new blogs to follow and to bring people to your site to see what you're all about!!

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Girls in White Dresses with Blue Satin Sashes...

Here are some things in my life that right now I love WAY more the brown paper packages tied up with string! No offense to Julie Andrews and all of those kids wearing curtains...

My Belly!
    At 22 weeks, I feel huge, but a little bit better about myself now that people aren't looking at me wondering if I don't exercise or if I'm pregnant. I'm clearly pregnant at this point! Noah girl moves literally all day and you wouldn't believe how much more effort it takes to power walk this week compared to last week, but I am loving it! Don't judge the no make-up look this was post-evening walk!

Burts Bees Mama Bee Belly Balm
       I had been using Palmer's for the first 5 months of my pregnancy, but I started getting a rash and decided to ask around for suggestions from some other mommies. I've been using Burt's for over a week now and I'm so pleased, its made of all natural ingredients and is very good to my oober sensitive skin!
Fake Chicken Patties from Morning Star
      It's been like 7 months since I gave up chicken, and the only thing I can say is that I miss fried chicken! I miss Chik-fil-A, McNuggets, and Bojangles Chicken Supremes! This way I get the chicken flavor and the fried flavor with out the actual chicken- or the calories. A wheat bun, lite mayo, spinach leaves, and a tomato. Delicious!

my bedside rotating fan- hells yes.
       Not sure how many of you have been pregnant, but I'm naturally hot natured, and now that my hormones are bonkers- this machine is literally the one thing I would die without. Even with the AC at 70, the ceiling fan on high, and this baby rotating directly in front of my face on level 5 I am still sweating through my pjs. Sheesh. 

    One other thing I'm loving is all you!! I am so grateful to all of you who follow my blog and keep up with all that is going on in my life! This is SO much better than writing in a diary every night! If you have a blog, business, or website you want me to visit then leave a comment or send me an email! I'll def share the love! Peace, babies! Layne

Monday, April 25, 2011

FiddledeeDee Designs Jewelry Giveaway!! Ends 04/29 @ 10 pm!!

    Hey y'all! This is it! My first giveaway- I'm insanely pumped. Here's hoping it goes well!  The madre has been very generous and has donated two pieces from her Spring 2011 collection for the cause!
      Dee started fiddledeeDee in 2009 as an outlet for her creative energy! Since then she has sold her pieces in 5 different states, at fairs, and crafts shows and in several boutiques including Uptown on Main St. in Columbia and Anything and Everything Gallery and Shop in Conway, Arkansas. I've seen her new Spring pieces that she's been posting on her facebook page and twitter and they are so fun and beautiful! While fiddledeeDee has only been available in Arkanasas boutiques for the past 6 months I've pushed her into updating her website with the new line so that the rest of us non-Arkansians out there have access to her product!! It is just too good to miss and her new stuff will be on the website this week!
   fiddledeeDee designs features costume, natural stone, shell, and pearl jewelry perfect for any occasion. She never makes the same piece twice so any given item is 100% original. She has designed for 3 different wedding parties, graduation gifts, even most recently has been asked to make pet jewelry for a Grooming Parlor! She welcomes any request for custom designs and honors referrals with generous discounts! The two pieces I will be giving away this week are a turquoise and coral shell bracelet and matching earring set! 
bracelet and earrings

i added this picture, so you could see the jewelry and not be distracted by the pretty flower!
 In order to win................

Mandatory entry:

Become a Follower of Layne's Lovely Life and leave a comment telling me what you would have customed designed for you given the chance by fiddledeeDee!

Bonus Entries: write a comment for each one you complete*

* "Like" fiddledeeDee designs on facebook. facebook link
* Visit the FiddledeeDee website and register as a fan!
* Tweet about this giveaway for 2 extra entries per tweet. Limit 1 tweet per day. (copy and paste url for tweet into comment)
* Follow me on twitter! @LayneStalvey
* Share this giveaway on facebook for 2 extra entries!
* Email this giveaway to a friend for 2 extra entries (make sure to cc: for entry to count)
* Have a friend enter the giveaway and list your name as a referral for 3 extra entries (include your friends comment number)
* purchase any other piece from fdD for an additonal 10 entries

*Disclaimer- for those with sensitive ears, the stones and shells are real, but the silver in these pieces is not sterling, however it is hypo-allergenic
*Contest ends Friday 04/29 @ 10:00 pm
*Make sure to leave separate comments for each qualifying entry! This is my first time, so we want to keep it simple!

   Please feel free to email or with any questions regarding this giveaway or the company featured.




Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Weekend- That's What's Up!

     I really hope everyone had as lovely of a weekend as I did. The office was closed for Good Friday so Chad, Morris and I headed to Myrtle Beach on Thursday evening to spend the weekend with the in-laws, nieces, and nephew. We spent most of Friday running errands, a trip to the mall and hanging out with the little ones. It is so crazy to see how much smarter they get and how intensely their personalities change in between such short visits. I loved hearing Carson yell "Aunt Layne!" all weekend and "I got you!!" he has turned into a total booger, and such a little man! The girls are so sweet and entertaining, for sure! Being around Cameron, the youngest, makes me so anxious for Noah! I love that newborn baby smell and snuggling!
     Saturday Chad and I spent a little under two hours on the beach. It was so beautiful, I always appreciate the first trip of the season! The weather was perfect in the high seventies and the sun was shining...the sun was shining so brightly that now Chad and I are hobbling around the house wincing every time we brush up against anything. We're hot pink, and currently toughing it out waiting patiently for the rose to turn brown. That afternoon we took a trip to Ripley's aquarium and Carol (Chad's mom) tagged along, too.  I can't remember the last time I had been, it was probably 10-15 years ago! It was a very nice trip, we spent about an hour looking at all the marine-life, especially the shark exhibit! I enjoyed touching the stingrays and horseshoe crabs! I made sure to use lots of hand sanitizer afterward, though. I wasn't sure how safe it was for me to being doing that pregnant, but I like to live life on the edge, what can I say?!
I handed Chad the camera to take a pic of me and the horseshoe crab...he just got the crab.

   I found myself having to rein it in at the aquarium, I was in rare form. I had to actively try to act my age. One of the first tanks we came to contained clown fish and blue/black tropical fish. It was Nemo and Dory. So for the next ten minutes I kept catching myself saying "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming"....that was until we got to the Predators of the Sea movie theater and watched the shark movie from that point on it was "duh-dun, duh-dun, duh-dun duh-dun duh-dun" that's when I realized what I was doing and started keeping my mouth shut. Of course, all through the cave- the one with the track like at the airport that rides you through the aquarium with sharks and other dangerous fish swimming all around you and above you, well all through that I had Heart playing in my head....and Heart stayed there until the next morning. I went to bed singing Barracuda. So annoying.
not the greatest picture, but we had such a great time!
       Saturday night the AC unit upstairs at Chad's folks house starting leaking and had to be shut off in order to prevent major damage to their den ceiling... this was a problem for me. 1. I am hot natured. 2. I am pregnant. 3. I am sun burnt. Thankfully we were welcomed with open arms at Chad's oldest sister Nicole's house at 11 o'clock at night with an air conditioned room, some sweet treats, and great conversation. The whole ordeal ended up being such a blessing in disguise because it was really a special treat to watch Taylor and Carson go through their Easter baskets this morning and find all of their goodies! Kids are hilarious, I can only imagine what a trip a child of mine and Chad's will be. We will surely have our hands full.
     With as much fun as this weekend was, we are so glad to be home, and it's nice to have some peace and quiet and time to ponder what this week has really been about. My cup runneth over, and I feel undeserving of the blessings I'm surrounded by all the time. However, I know that my shortcomings will be forgiven, my sins will be erased and that my Redeemer lives. I love my family, and I love my Savior. Layne

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Tune-In Thursday Play-list! Commercials Edition!

So, I'm not sure about the rest of you, but the song from the new Heineken commercial has been stuck in my head for days. This is what prompted my list of songs this week. I've chosen a few songs that I really like, or that are super catchy from commercials on TV right now. The list isn't very long, but I thought if anyone wanted to comment and volunteer their own songs from commercials that they find themselves singing all the time, then they can! Without further ado, here is my list- starting, of course, with the song from the Heineken commercial. Love, Layne

Tune-In Play-list, Commercial Edition

1. The Golden Age by The Asteroids Galaxy Tour (Heineken)
2. Aint We Got Fun by Peggy Lee (Carnival Cruise Lines)
3. Wonders Never Cease by Morcheeba (Discovery Channel HD)
4. Just a Little Lovin' by Carmen McRae (Sealy Mattress)
5. The One I Loved by David Gray (AMC Channel)
6. Clair de Lune by Claude Debussey (Lexus)
7. Lady Labyrinth by Ludovico Einaudi (Nissan)
8. Wash Away by Joe Purdy (Dawn Soap)
9. Angel by Akon (Victoria's Secret)

P.S. I hope everyone has an amazing Easter weekend!

Want to find some awesome blogs to follow?

There is a Bunny (Blog) Hop going on right now....check it out! It's a great way to find new blogs to follow and get followers for your own blog!

Bunny Hop!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Shops I am loving these days....

      Having just bought our house in March, and Chad opening his agency in June, we are back budgeting tightly these days, but that doesn't mean a girl can't look. I have been looking everywhere for ideas for things for Noah. I look at clothes, toys, food, nursery decor, and I spend a lot of time looking at nursing bras, and shirts, etc. Eventually before September comes, we will have to have all of these things, so what better way to be prepared than to know what I want from where and have plenty of time to find awesome deals! I am very big into organic clothing, eco-friendly cleaning supplies, and organic foods and with organic sometimes you get pricey. I've had a lot of help from other bloggers (on a much bigger scale than I am) finding awesome companies and brands who offer the organic items that appeal to me. Here are a few:

JAWS- Just Add Water System

CJ's Sewing Room- Home of the Natural BUTTer

Nell's Natural Baby--- I even made a registry here!

Another thing I'm into is handmade items....and for anyone who knows ETSY is the place to go...I could search the ETSY childrens pages for hours on end. At this point I don't dare venture into other catagories, my wish list will become too long! Here are a few adorable things I've picked out for Noah girl on Etsy, and then a link or two for some other cute handmade childrens items...

Another great handmade item store....

  I have also become fully overtaken by the world of online giveaways...I seriously enter one or two a day. Every day. There are so many great bloggers out there who work with companies to review and giveaway awesome products! How cool is it to learn about a product first hand from someone who has used it and gives you a play by play detailed report on it. I love it, and as a first time mom-to-be it is such a blessing. Right now I've registered to win everything from cloth diapers and breast pumps, to cleaning supplies and herb is really fun, I haven't won anything yet, but one day I will and it will be totally worth it! I've mentioned before that it is definitely my goal to get to the point where I can do fun stuff like this through this blog! I am still planning a fiddle-dee-Dee designs jewelry giveaway in the next few weeks, so be on the look out for that! I also have several friends who have started up new ventures of handmade kids goodies, and fashion accessories, and I would absolutely be glad to feature them on the blog, as well!! Here are a few of my favorite blogs from women who are beautiful, smart, and totally entertaining, most of which feature regular product reviews and giveaways for women and mothers:

The two ladies above are very interactive with their followers, have been great at answering questions and giving advice and their opinions....I def recommend checking them out!

These sites offer daily giveaways, and run several at a time, they are very fun and have introduced me to a lot of new products out there! All bloggers feel great getting new followers so if you visit any of these sites and add them to your list, leave em' a note or comment and let them know I sent you! We love the love!!

That's it for today, tomorrow's play list is going to be songs from commercials I like! I'll give you the names and artists who sing the songs that are stuck in your head all day after you watch TV!  Love, Layne

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Calling all Bloggers!! Mission to a Healthier Me!!

So some of the awesome blogging mommies I follow have joined a mission to healthier living! Since Dr. No-Fun, aka my OB has given me strict diet and exercise orders this is just perfect....

Here are the rules...
Make your own rules!!! Everyone is different and every has different health here are my resolutions:

1. 30 minute work outs at least 5 days a week.
2. No eating after 9pm.
3. Only one soda a day

Now y'all I hope you get into this as much as I do! And make sure to follow-up with me to keep me on my toes!

My Completely Random Life...

The coolest thing happened today...Noah kicked for Chad! Today was the first day I felt true defined kicks. I'd been feeling movement for a while now...but no specific moves. Just wallowing. So these kicks are really, super cool! 
the bump- don't say I never did anything for you...

The kicks are happening after meals, from what I can tell. Speaking of meals...tonight's was a doozy! I cooked up some pancakes, sausage, eggs, and hash-browns scattered with onions!! So delicious. That was my tasty meal for the day, I've been eating healthy meals twice daily and one normal meal, not necessarily unhealthy, just not going out of my way to make it low-cal. Healthy can be delish, though. Last night I made an awesome spinach leaves, Roma tomatoes, chopped broccoli (she choppa, she choppa), bell peppers, and lite ranch! Check it out!
I'm addicted to baby spinach!

Today, while I ate my faux-chicken patti sandwich and raw baby carrots for lunch (following doctors orders!) Chad chowed down on homemade pulled pork barbecue, made by yours truly. I make seriously phenomenal BBQ. It is so easy, and I make it in large quantities so it feeds the hubby for at least a week! I use the slow cooker, so it does most of the work for me, but the seasoning and preparation, that's all me!

Layne's Stellar Pulled Pork
about 4lbs of boneless country style ribs (Wal-Mart has awesome deals)
*as a side note, bone in ribs will work too, you just have to pick and pull the bones out of the meat when it starts falling off the bone into the pot*
the ribs go into the slow cooker and are covered with coca-cola. It normally takes a liter, or 2 20 oz bottles. I don't do math in my head, so don't judge me if that is the same amount. Basically, just enough coke to cover the meat.
In the pot with the coke and ribs add:
tsp black pepper (ground)
1/2- 1 tsp cayenne pepper (ground)-----I use a lot!
1/4 tsp salt
tbsp dried mince onion
3/4 cup brown sugar
cook on low 10hrs....I like to cook mine 12-14hrs makes it easier to put in at night and fix when you wake up in the morning and the meat just falls yummy!
Once the meat is cooked I use tongs to get it out of the slow cooker and put it all in an extra large skillet.
I use a fork and butter knife to shred the pork in the skillet, it takes MAYBE 4 minutes...the meat is so tender and juicy.
I put the stove on med-high and put 1/4 cup of Great Value BBQ sauce on it (not enough to really flavor it, just keep it moist) and then douse it with Texas Pete.
The hot sauce and bbq sauce doesn't alter the flavor already in the meat, just enhances it!
I mix it all up and get the meat good and moist over the med-high heat for about 4-5 minutes and...Voila!

the final product

Also per the doctors orders I have been a walking machine! Morris always comes with, but today and yesterday Chad joined us, too! Saturday, after the rain and storms passed it turned out to be a gorgeous day. We ended up taking a 2 hour walk on the Greeneway all the way down to the Savannah River front. We let Mo get in the water at a boat ramp, he is so peculiar. He loves the water but only if he can touch the bottom, he is terrified when he swims!
the loves of my life

Today has been spent at church, cooking (see above) and cleaning, since we have guests coming. In between we managed to squeeze in watching Carolina beat Vandy in baseball, a short nap, and a nice walk. We had to return a dvd to the Redbox and the Food Lion we got it from is only a mile or so away, so we had another adventure walk to make sure we didn't get the dollar late charge! That also made me feel a little less guilty about the breakfast for dinner! Tomorrow Chad's sister Jen and her hubby Justin are coming for a visit on their Spring Break, most importantly they're bringing our niece Macy, also known as this little booger...

We are so excited to see her! I hope y'alls weekend was as nice as ours was- back to cleaning! Love, Layne

Friday, April 15, 2011

My entry dedicated to Foodies

      I don't think I could ever specifically say that I am having pregnancy cravings. I have ALWAYS had cravings, even when I'm not expecting. I'm a very weird eater. I eat bizaare things, and I always want bizaare things, so nothing has really changed for me. However, I know that the "cravings" quesiton is one of the first ones that people have when talking to a pregnant lady so I thought I'd document my eat habits for you, if for nothing else, to make you super duper hungry while you read this.

      Frist Trimester, and this started before I even found out that I was preggo, I was a carb Queen! This was kind of weird and also kind of expected. I wasnt eating carbs in excess before, but I also had recently become a vegetarian and was still sorting my way through new recipes and meal alternatives. I was grilled cheese crazy the first two months of my prenancy. Slowly it got worse, all I wanted was Ramen noodles. I was eating 3-4 packs of Creamy Chicken Ramen noodles a day! Then it was noodles in genereal, pasta with parmesan, ravioli, mac n cheese, it was a pasta rampage and I enjoyed the ride. I started eating Spaghettio's by the can, heck even straight out of the can. College and High School Layne would have not been bothered by this but it was not typical for me at this point in my life, I was/ am very calorie-conscious and Ramen is rediculously high in calories.
     I purposely tried to work my way out of this phase and start eating a wider variety of foods, this is when I added meat back into my diet, I had to get a full stomach off of something other than pasta, bread, and rice. If you've read my blog before you know I still don't eat chicken, but about 12 weeks into the pregnancy I added beef and pork back into my diet and that provided me with the opportunity to fill myself up without packing on too much weigh. Meat and veggies is a much better alternative to cheesy bread, with cheesy pasta, and cheesy rice.
      The only thing I noticed that truly changed with my taste for food was that I was not interested in sweets at all. Being a huge sweet that often petitions on facebook for friends to deliver pecan pies and birthday cake to her house, this was a total 180. I actually remember grabbing a Snickers at a gas station thinking how badly I wanted it and taking a bite out of it and literally spitting it out. At least with my carb intake increased, I lessened my chocolate intake. That feeling has passed at this point, by the way, I am all about some pecan pie and am once again accepting deliveries.
       Now, at five months pregnant I have noticed the real trend as far as my "cravings" go, and I use that word loosly, because as I said I have always wanted bizaare meals at bizaare times; the trend is nostalgia. I don't know if it is because my subconsious is all psyched out about being a mom and having a child as opposed to being a child, but a large majority of the foods that have entered back into my diet are foods that I ate a lot as a kid, or when I was living with my parents. Case and point: Ramen Noodles, Grilled Cheese with a bowl of soup (from my dad), Pasta with parmesa and frittatas (from my mom), macncheese (mom), spaghetti-o's right out of the can (we all did that). I even went out and got porkchops for Chad to cook me on the grill and ate them with green pepper jelly, a total Bob Sanders meal.  Recently my fridge has been full of homemade broccoli casserole which is a total Dee Sanders meal! I'm sure a psychologist would think this isn't very interesting and maybe could have even predicted it, as far as I know its a very common trend, but I am totally impressed that I realized what was going on.
    We had our 5 month check up yesterday, and I thought I was going to have my big diagnostic ultra sound, but I didn't. Instead the doctor told me that for right now my weight is perfect, ideal even, but the biggest weigh increase is about to happen in the next 4-6 weeks and I needed to exercise 7 days a week and be eating a low calorie diet consisting of a lot of fresh raw veggies. Luckily I'm already all over that. Morris and I have been walking 1/2 hour every afternoon on our nature trail and there is a Farmer's Market in town with my name on it. I love me some veggies. Yum-meee!! Below are links to some of the recipes I've been using!!And a picture or two to make you hungry....speaking of hungry, Chad and I are going to Shealy's BBQ tonight. So pumped. Don't tell my OB because it is definitely NOT raw veggies. ;) Love, Layne

Paula Deen's Broccoli Casserole

Cold Veggie Pizza

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Tune-In Thursday Play List Double-Feature

So, since last week was crazy and I didn't post a playlist, I promised everyone that I would do a double-feature this week. Leave it to me to get extra busy again, so I had to call in some help. I asked two of my closest friends to "guest DJ", if you will, and I'm totally pumped because they came up with some great stuff. I asked the ladies who I thought had the most different taste from each other. One likes more Urban and Pop music, the other Alternative-Indie. Y'all are in for a treat. Today's lists have something for everybody. Super fun post for tomorrow hopefully!! Keep checking in! Love ya, Layne

Caitrin Laughey's Tune-in Thursday Play List:

1. One and Only- Adele
2. Big Jet Plane- Angus and Julia Stone
3. Tear Down the House- Avett Brothers
4. Sail- Awolnation
5. The General Specific- Band of Horses
6. Shake Me Down- Cage the Elephant
7. Look at Me Now- Chris Brown
8. Come on Eileen- Dexy's Midnight Runners and Kevin Rowland
9. Jolene- Dolly Parton
10. I Need a Doctor- Dr. Dre
11. Home- Edward Sharp and the Magnetic Zeros
12. Money Grabber- Fitz and the Tantrums
13. Paris (Ooh Lala) -Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
14. Moment for Life- Nicki Minaj
15. All of the Lights- Kanye West

Tara Cooper's Tune-in Thursday Play List:

1. Someone Like You- Adele
2. Baby, Now That I've Found You- Allison Krauss
3. Roll Up- Wiz Khalifa
4. John- Lil Wayne feat. Rick Ross
5. WOP- J. Dash
6. Never Say Never- Justin Beiber
7. No Hands- Waka Flocka Flame
8. Papers- Usher
9. Bleeding Love- Leona Lewis
10. Right Above It- Lil Wayne feat. Drake

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I wish I drank Expresso on days like these....

I could use a triple shot. I'm dragging today, for sure, and unfortunately the cirumstances in my life are not cooperating with my slower pace. I am officially the only member on staff at my job now other than the receptionist, so my workload is absolutely bonkers. I'm not too stressed about it right now, though, I have decided not to let myself get worked up over it anymore. That only makes things worse. I've taken the laughing approach....when it rains it pours and every time it starts raining harder I just laugh a little more at how rediculous it is. I'm staying super postivie, and just counting my blessings: I'm alive, pregnant, healthy, in love, have a house and job and clothes on my is pretty sweet even on days I'm feeling sluggish.

Tomorrow we have our 5 month ultrasound at the doctor and will get to see Noah and learn more about how she is doing. This appointment is when they measure her and get lots of details to so they can start paying close attention to her development from here out. I am so excited to see her! I hate that it only happens every two months. It is the coolest thing ever to watch her dance around and wiggle, last time we had the ultrasound she did a back flip for us, total show off. Just like her mom and dad... I can't believe it's been 5 months already! It blows my mind, September seems so far away but then again I feel like it was just December. We went ahead and registered our little chick at BabiesRUs and Target and are of course letting everyone know -no disposable diapers, cloth only! Chad has the crib in the garage that he will eventually get around to putting together, although I know he's not thrilled about the task. We have changed the bedding for the nursery, too, and are sooo excited about our choice. We loved the original pick but found that the colors were hard to match decor with, so the new fabric is more bright and cheery and absolutely adorable. Here it is...

Hope everyone is having a great day out there! Love to y'all! Layne

Friday, April 8, 2011

Just a Shorty Today...

Sorry for the lack of a Tune-In Thursday playlist, y'all. I'll do a double-extended mix next week. I have to admit, I just kind of blanked on it. I've been sick as a dog all week with allergies and sinues problems, all week we've been short staffed because the boss is out of town and the only other licensed agent took the week off. So at work for the past few days it's been just me and the receptionist, and Chad when he has time to come in and help out. Add to that, the Masters being on (I'm a huge fan/addict),  the Garciagate2011, and the government shut down and I'm just simply overwhelmed.

I hope for those working for the government and those military families out there that they are able to settle on a budget reasonably and quickly. I can't say I feel immediately affected by it but my heart goes out to those who are, I couldn't imagine the stress of it all.

We are going to finally meet our beautiful niece, Cameron Grace Sasser, this weekend and get to enjoy the pleasure of seeing her blessed in church. I can't wait to see our family, we miss them so much, especially the little ones! Also, my sisters-in-law have yet to see the baby belly! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, safe and happy. Love you, Layne

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Food Not Bombs

    Now y'all know I am hippie. I'm not rocking hemp loafers, but I braid my hairon occasion, recycle, protest for animal rights, and I take a general pro-environment : pro-world : pro-health stance on most things. It matters to me what our world is becoming how neglectful we are of the Earth and the gift it is to us, and I hate that animals don't have a voice against the people who abuse them and horrible treatment a lot recieve. I don't research the statistics of the ice caps melting, and I don't know what my Carbon footprint is, but I know that there are little things I can do to help give the world one more push toward sustainability and even if I don't always succeed, it is something I feel is worth attempting.
      Before I was pregnant I was a vegetarian, and I still don't consume chicken (bleck). This started because living in Lexington, SC and driving the the Shandon area of Columbia for work everyday I passed HUNDREDS of chicken trucks packed to capacity with chickens heading to their death at the Chicken plant. I cried every single time I passed the truck for the first month. The trucks haunted me, I would be on the opposite side of town and one would be at a stop light next to me. Those poor chickens, shoved into the metal crates, pecking each other to death before they can even get to the plant to be killed, because they are in such close quarters that they can't move. Some farms go ahead and just cut their beaks off so they can't peck each other. How thoughtful of them. Then there is the absolutely disgusting, Tyson, who pumps their chickens so full or hormones that the chickens can't even move or stand they're so swollen and bloated. I'm getting upset just thinking about it now. I haven't always been this way. I think there is something organic about hunting, the evolution of man and hunting and gathering, its in our blood. However, like most things in this day and time, meat processing and the killing of animals has gotten out of hand. It's not organic anymore, its disgusting. We're eating meat with steroids and chemicals and the animals are very inhumanely treated before they're slaughtered their not in a field or forrest somewhere living a normal life. If I could afford "happy" meat and eggs and cheese, I would go that route, but it's rediculously priced, so I just opted out of it all.
      I started eating beef and pork again after I found out I was pregnant, I know the statistics and info on those meats are just as bad as what I know about the chickens, but I'm living in ignorance for the time being. I tried to keep the vegetarian route for the first month I was pregnant, but the faux-chicken proteins and beans and grains, weren't satisfying me like a hamburger was. I actually think that now that I'm in my second trimester I could go back to veggies only again pretty easily, I guess my cravings got the best of me over the first 3 months, but I digress.
      The purpose of this post is not to tell you about my eating habits but about the two awesome projects I learned about last night while watching the TV show Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel. The first organization is Food Not Bombs. I guess since I'm not a child of the 60's it isn't weird that I didn't know about this group, but I love what they do. They started in the 60's giving out free food during anti-war demonstrations and rock'n'roll shows at the height of the free-love movement. Back then they endured horrible police brutality because giving out free food is illegal, and I guess with everything that was going on ( wars, ralley, etc) the police thought it would get out of hand. Now, however they do their thing without much trouble. The group, which is mostly found in large cities, goes - for lack of a better word- "dumpster diving" for food to make vegan and vegetarian meals to serve to the public about one night a week. This sounds gross, but it's not. Here's what they do: they search dumpsters outside of big restaurants and food markets that are required to throw away produce and goods that are more than a certain number of days old. This was disgusting, and I don't mean that it was food out of dumpters, I mean the amount of wastefulness by these places of business was ASTOUNDING. These girls pulled out 10lb bags of potatoes that didn't even have eyes on them yet, bunch after bunch after bunch of beautiful yellow, non-bruised banana's, cartons of strawberries that were still wrapped and red and juicy, cabbage and spring greens that were in pefect condition, not a wilted leaf in sight. It was mind-blowing. They took aways pounds and pounds of food that would have cost hundreds of dollars at any grocery store. They wash the food, peel it, etc and it's perfect. The group gets together with the food once a week and prepares a meal- enough to serve several hundred people, homemade vegan food. They gather in a public square, park, somewhere spacious and anyone who wants a meal partakes. They fed the homeless, students, tourists, and passerby's eventually a whole group of hodge podge people of different lifestyles were dining together in the streets of San Francisco. I was so impressed. I heard through the grapevine that there is a group in Columbia called Gardens Not Bombs that meets in Finlay Park once a week if anyone is interested, but I don't know the details. If you want more information on the Food Not Bombs group you can check them out here: Food Not Bombs

     The other people featured on the episode were not an organized group or club...hey couldn't be, because some of what they do is considered illegal. It's not as sketchy as it sounds, but it is very exciting. These people were professional chefs who on the side of their day (or night) jobs are foragers.They go all around the city in public parks, national forrests, on the side of the highway and collect wild resources that can be cooked to make gourmet meals. They only take a 1/3 of what's available and it's always of something that will growback or reproduce that way they protect the sustainability of what they collect. The gentleman on the show gathered: seaweed off of rocks by the water in Golden Gate Park, pulled snails from trees in one of the local parks, and wild fennel from a highway roadside. Then he cooked. An underground dinner is served to about 100 people who pay a hefty $80 per person toward the cause in order to be a part of the event! It's something like 6-8 courses and it's all made with local, foraged, sustainable ingredients. With the seaweed he made seaweed aioli, the snails were ground up to go on crostinis, and the fennel pollen was a garnish for some other dishes. Once again, totally awesome. My mind was blown.

I learned so much during that smal period of time last night watching that show, I just had to lay some knowledge on y'all! I just get so tickled to learn new things, especially enviro-friendly ones! Here is a link to the show's page featuring clips of the episode and future air dates! Bizarre Foods- SanFran episode I hope you found it as entertaining and lovely as I did! Layne

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

NATURE!!! It's Why I Come Up Here! Gou-let!

    So this post isn't an homage to Robert Goulet, or Will Ferrell's impersonation of him, but it is to show y'all how stinkin' cool our new neighborhood is! We've been hearing since we started looking at our house as a perspective home that our neighborhood had these awesome nature trails, but we couldn't find them to save our lives! North Augusta, has this awesome Greeneway, and while the town wasn't built around it, it certainly has been rebuilt around it. Right now the Greeneway is over 7 miles of gorgeous paved paths and it is still expanding to run through the entire city and all of the major neighborhoods to connect them to the beautiful Riverfront Park overlooking the Savannah River. Right now the paths in our neighborhood don't connect but they were made to eventually have that purpose and be an extension of the Greeneway!
      At this point in my pregnancy I've been feeling pretty much terrible as far as body image goes. I don't have this totally obvious round pregnant belly yet, so I just feel fat, and no matter what anyone can say about there being a baby in there, it doesn't change how uncomfortable and bad I feel about myself. I have always been super self-conscious when it comes to my weight and right now my insecurity is at an all time high. I normally love to exercise, but there is one little problem.... 
     The weather has been gorgeous of late and seems to be staying that way the further we get into Spring, but I have some of the worst allergies of anyone you'll meet. My allergist is VERY insistant that I'm not supposed to be outside without a surgical mask on to prevent me from getting sick when the pollen levels are like they are. This is humiliating, but I do it as often as I can. A few weeks ago when the pollen first hit I had the mask on when I rolled down the window to pay in the McDonalds drive-thru and the little boy yells "UEWHH!! YOU SICK?!" It was a great start to my morning. I felt like taking it off spitting on him and saying-yep, and now you are too! Regardless of that incident, it is a little hard to get motivated to exercise on these awesome trails knowing that I'm supposed to be wearing a mask while I do it. I recently got so down on myself I decided that I would rather be sick and atleast feel like I was making an effort to be healthy than to not exercise. So Momo and I have been walking in the afternoons a lot lately and I love it. It does require extra medicine and causes headaches, the sniffles, etc. but I feel so much better mentally, emotionally, and physically knowing that I'm working out and not being a lazy preggo fatty. I did P90X one day with Chad a few weeks ago and couldn't walk the next 2 days, so this is definitely the better alternative! Morris loves it too, and we talk about how we can wait to be pushing Noah in a stroller with us! Yes, that's right, Morris talks to me. I'm his mother, why wouldn't he? Here are some pics I took with my phone on our walk yesterday! I hope that y'all are able to get out and enjoy the spring weather, too! Love, Layne

this trail runs through a park with a play area for kids

boardwalk over a creek

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Dining Room--where dining happens...

We finished another room in our house! Yay!!! This makes 2 down 5 to go!! Our dining room is lovely, if I do say so myself. The walls are a celery green which is really difficult to photograph but I've done my best. We used chocolate brown and gold as our accent colors! The draperies were a gift from my mama and they look amazing, and I'd say were the easiest in the entire house for Chad to fights started over this room! I most definitely recommend Anna's Linens for window coverings and drapes they were so affordable and the quality was great! Here are a few pictures of the room! Love, Layne
View from the kitchen doorway

View from the billiards room

Second view from kitchen