Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Seven Month Photo

28 weeks today, hello third trimester! Honestly, I hadn't thought much about getting to this part of pregnancy. The first trimester I was worried about another miscarriage and the second trimester I was just glad not to be sick anymore. Now it is sinking in that in just 12 more weeks there's going to be a baby girl in the adorable nursery that is being created! And I'll never sleep again! And how is this whole natural childbirth thing really going to work!

Good thing I have Christmas to distract me for a while. :D

If you were wondering how much I've grown, here you go:

7 months edit

I wonder if this non-maternity dress will make it through months eight and nine? I have a maternity back-up for when the time comes.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Reflecting on our many blessings today.

redemption through Christ
our marriage
a new baby girl on the way
Noel Christian
the Gent's new job
great house to rent
good neighbors
our new church
family relationships
friends old and new

What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

November Date Night

To opera night at the symphony! The Gent and I are really enjoying our season tickets (and we got a great deal). And since we live right in the city, we're a mile from the theatre. Fabulous. Yay for great dates.

Lil Bit loves music. She was dancing all around at worship team practice last week (especially to the drums). And whenever the timpani played at the symphony, she was kicking so much I thought she was trying to keep time to the music. (Ummm, sweetheart, if you really want to learn the drums Mama will support you, but maybe we could start with an instrument that is a little quieter?)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Grandma King

Grandma King was our babysitter growing up. My brother and I adored her. She is now 101! Mom and I went to visit her this week. It is hard for her to hear, but she is sharp as a tack and she loves company. I'm glad we had a chance to catch up. I told her we'd be back after the baby is born, so she can meet the next generation!

Grandma King and Kathryn 1

Mom and Grandma King

And when I got home, hubby had gorgeous fall flowers waiting for me. He's so thoughtful. Besides bringing me flowers, he takes out the trash, washes the dishes, keeps my car filled with gas, and scoops the dog poop. What a great man.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's that time of year . . .

. . . when I start getting into the Christmas spirit! Actually, I am behind this year. A great football season and getting ready for baby have distracted me! But I did start my shopping last week. I bought Christmas cards when it was 80 degrees outside, and I've been driving around listening to Christmas music with the AC is blowing (not because I want to pretend it is cold outside, but because it really is hot without it). However, I am sure winter will be here before I want it. Days in the upper 70s and nights in the 50s are fine with me.

The evenings have been plenty cool, in my opinion. I even had one magical night last week when I lit the candles in the fireplace, made myself some hot chocolate, and flipped through the December issues of my decorating magazines. Ahhhh delightful.

This old house is going to be so much fun to decorate. I am picturing a very traditional look - lots of greenery, crystal, candles, and bits of red and green.

I promise not to put my tree up until after Thanksgiving. :)

Friday, November 12, 2010


Drumroll please . . .

I think the Gent and I have finally found a church home! After visiting eight or nine churches, we have found a group of believers where we feel welcomed and encouraged to grow. It is a non-denominational church and a member of the Willow Creek Association. We love the worship style and the pastor's teaching. It is similar to many churches in our previous hometown, but very modern for the Deep South. :)

Honestly, we were hoping to find a "blended" church - mixing traditional and modern worship styles. We were also hoping to find a pastor who does expository teaching - working his way through a book of the Bible at a time. And we found neither.

But that's okay. We're confident this is the church the Lord has us in for this short season. There's no perfect church, anyway.

So we're jumping in to this great fellowship. I've already met with the worship pastor and am singing with the worship team next Sunday. We'll start visiting small groups in the next week or two, and look forward to meeting other young couples and families with small children.

Though no one will replace our last church's newlyweds class. We miss you!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


For the first time ever, we are living "in the city." And we love it. Our neighborhood is filled with old houses - estates, cottages, and everything in between. Some of the houses have been completely redone, some have been well-maintained, some are being remodeled, some are condemned by the city and waiting for someone to tear them down.




We love the variety of architecture. We love the old churches. We love having restaurants within walking distance. We love having beautiful places to walk to and by. We love living a mile from downtown and the Gent's work. We love our neighbors. We love finally living in a more diverse area. (I love that there is a full-service gas station, the kind where they look under your hood and check your tire pressure. And I hope I love that there is an Aveda salon I am trying out today.)


(this is the one we would buy. if we could afford it, and had lots of kids to fill it up, and were staying in this city, of course.)


Our neighborhood has housing projects, a WIC office, and plenty of quick-cash checking services. These former-suburbanites are being stretched out of our comfort zone, and it is a good thing. Wonder where God is going to take us from here?

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Season for Soup

Here are two of my favorite fall soups. These have a bit of spice in them to keep you warm.

Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup (a conglomeration of recipes I found online)
olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 red bell peppers
6 large tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons thyme
2 teaspoons paprika
1/8 teaspoon sugar
4 cups chicken broth
salt and pepper
cayenne pepper
dash of hot sauce
sour cream

Rub oil on peppers and broil till blackened, turning to get all sides. Let rest 15 minutes; peel and dice. Heat olive oil in stockpot. Saute onion and garlic. Then add tomatoes, peppers, thyme, paprika, sugar, chicken stock, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and hot sauce. Simmer about 30 minutes. Puree soup with immersion blender if you have one (less messy), or in regular blender or food processor (in batches). Mix in sour cream to taste and serve.

Butternut Squash Bisque (Better Homes and Gardens)
2 1/2 - 3 pound butternut squash
1/4 cup butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 large gala apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
48 oz chicken broth
1 cup apple juice
2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
1/2 cup sour cream
3 oz cheddar or gouda cheese, shredded

Peel, seed, and cube squash. In stockpot, melt butter. Add squash, onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, 10 minutes or so. Add apples, broth, juice, and peppers. Bring to boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 25 minutes or until veggies are tender. Puree in pot with immersion blender, or transfer (in batches) to regular blender or food processor. Return to stockpot; add sour cream and cheese. Stir till melted and serve.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Foster Parenting Thoughts

Remember this post? Although we have a baby on the way, we haven't forgotten to pray about what role God wants us to play in the foster parenting and adoption arena. We looked into foster parenting classes here, but ultimately decided to wait until we make our final (well, final for the foreseeable future) move next summer. We're continuing to pray about the children (biological, foster, or adopted) the Lord would bring into our family, and feel that at this time we will pursue becoming licensed foster parents for infants and preschoolers next fall.

A lot of people have asked me if we'll be able to "give a child back," perhaps to a situation we don't think is best.

The answer to that question is another question: Is God sovereign?

To which we say, absolutely. We trust that the Lord has plans for our good, even if we don't ever understand it.

While we would be open to adopting a foster child who became eligible for adoption while in our care, we look at foster parenting as an opportunity to advance Christ's ministry of reconciliation. This is a long passage, but bear with me:

2 Corinthians 5:11-21
"Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.

So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God."

I'm not sure if this is going to translate well to the written word, but here goes: God is in the reconciliation business. He reconciles our souls to Himself through the blood of His Son. And we hope to reflect that reconciliation pattern in our work with hurting families, in whatever way the Lord can use us.

Sometimes, we hope, there will be happy endings. Mostly we expect a lot of hurt, children going back to bad situations, and things we don't understand.

But if God is really God, if He is really in control, then we'll trust Him to work for our good in all circumstances. We rest in knowing that He is the same - yesterday, today, forever.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Six Month Photo

6 months

Just ignore the funky shadows - you get the idea of how I'm growing (thankfully it is all in front so far!). We had a checkup yesterday, pretty routine, heartbeat is strong and I am not developing gestational diabetes, yay. I have gained 13 pounds and I've never weighed this much in my life, but I keep telling myself it is all for a good cause. And I'm enjoying indulging in hot chocolate or ice cream in the evenings. I am loving being pregnant and embracing my new shape (but the old one will come back, right? at least mostly?). I love feeling our little girl dancing around in my tummy. So far, she loves the symphony best, although she is pretty active at football games, too.

The Gent and I are signed up for childbirth classes in December and January, working slowly on the nursery (with the help of my Mom - thanks, Mom!), and interviewing doulas and pediatricians. I think we'll be ready by February. :)

I am feeling great, other than some back pain, but my yoga helps a lot with that. My second trimester must-haves are:

Shiva Rea's Prenatal Yoga DVD (since there are no classes here)

Low-rise leggings from Old Navy (I refuse to wear panels, at least for now. Old Navy has a great line of maternity low-rise pants that I am loving.)

Breyer's Oreo Ice Cream

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

October Date Night

Halloween marked the seventh anniversary of our very first date. To celebrate, the Gent had the splendid idea to go to our happy place. (Not the beach this time - we have more than one happy place!) We took a walk down memory lane and revisited our favorite places on campus.

This bench . . . we spent lots of time here, daydreaming about our future, among other things. ;) It is also where we had our first kiss, where the Gent proposed, and the only place we've ever been spotlighted by police. Truthfully, we really were just drinking coffee and talking that time. I think the police officer was a little disappointed that all we did was salute him with our coffee cups.
7th anniversary of first date 008

The Gent having some fun with the camera. And me.
7th anniversary of first date 014

After soaking in campus, we wandered around downtown and ended up at our absolute favorite restaurant ever. Great food, great atmosphere, great service. And a good wine list, not that we partook in anything this time. (Note to the Gent: let's go back after the baby is born!)
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And because the cool thing to do if you have a nifty camera and a blog is to post pictures of your food, here you go.

Spinach artichoke dip for an appetizer
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I had the chicken provencal, which is this amazing pan-seared chicken with a tomato ragout sauce that I LOVE. It sounds simple but the flavors come together perfectly. The Gent enjoyed the scallops, I think; I was too caught up in savoring my meal.
7th anniversary of first date 032

Dessert was on the house since we were celebrating a special occasion (we've celebrated many here, at our special place) - vanilla cheesecake with a thick layer of chocolate ganache, strawberries, and homemade whipped cream. And decaf coffee to cut the sweet.
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Yum (the food and the Gent). What a perfect way to celebrate seven years together.
7th anniversary of first date 033

Monday, November 1, 2010

Early Christmas Present

A Canon Rebel!

Now I just have to learn to use it . . .