Mom Life

Anybody there? I know, I know, it’s been radio silence for quite some time on the blog. Sorry I’m not sorry though because I’ve been busy with this little guy.

Yes, Cody Elliott Johns arrived on August 23rd, 2016. And he’s already over two months old! I shared more immediate pictures on Facebook but couldn’t bring myself to compose a blog post until today. 

We are so in love with Cody. He’s smiling and starting to laugh and so fun to play with. It’s amazing to think we created this little human! On the other hand Cody is not a fan of naps or sleep and loves to nurse around the clock. Breastfeeding really is the cure for anything that ails him. That unfortunately means mom spends much of her time feeding. The other time is spent changing diapers or, gasp, feeding myself. I’m excited to get back to blogging some though. I love to share our happenings and talk about life with you all. 

Amongst the adjusting to life with our new addition, we planted a tree, are moving forward painting and changing molding to white in the house, and are having a wood stove installed! Exciting things! And the holidays are upon us. Are ya’ll ready? I’m not, not even close. Butwhile Cody napped in his wrap yesterday for TWO WHOLE HOURS, I made this for him.

It’s not quite done yet but Cody will have a stocking! Mom and Dad’s are next with their own plaid.

So tell me! Are you ready for the holidays? Are you taking on any projects right now?

Nursery Tour

Howdy! I’m 38 weeks this week and thought I’d share the finished nursery. I took a little ‘tour’ with the camera as it’s basically done. I’m sure we’ll add bits and pieces over time and we have some things planned but overall, this is it! 😊

Baby boy’s room is Winnie the Pooh themed. We went with Waterlily by Disney for the wall color. It was only at Walmart but we had Home Depot color match it in the Behr Premium paint. We knew early on we wanted the Hundred Aker Wood map below. We also knew we wanted a dresser that doubled as a changing table do it could withstand more than just the nursery years. We got those extra plastic drawers and diaper caddy to keep all the baby care items in check. And the lamp is indeed a honey pot! A very fun find on eBay. My pooh loving heart was so happy when we got that! Patrick made the shelves that we still will be filling with nicknacks and things. The frame on the ground will get some artwork with baby boy’s birth info after he’s born.

I made the curtains from winnie the pooh material and we updated the thermal shades underneath. The crown molding and baseboards are also new. If you’re planning on putting up crown molding, be prepared to paint your ceiling. We painted the molding a nice Polar Bear white by Behr and after putting it up, our ceiling looked terrible. So off to the store we went for Polar Bear for the ceiling. There’s the honey bee mobile some of you knew I was working on! I was sure to add a music box that turns it because Patrick was adamant the mobile must spin. 😉

The quilt was a handmade gift from our friend Starla. It’s filled with Pooh prints and we love how it complements the room. I made the crib skirt in the yellow honey bee fabric that’s in the quilt. The crib sheets are Burt’s Bees with honey bees as well. 

Check out all the books! We were spoiled with books from so many friends and family and I can’t wait to read them all to the little guy! We’d like to eventually build a book manger for them so he can have them at his height for easy access. They’ll stay in that spot, just up off the floor in the little manger/caddy. 

The decals were Patrick’s idea and are so much fun. It makes the room feel like you’re in the Hundred Aker Wood. 

The last side of the room, our comfy Stork Craft glider and ottoman. The picture on the wall was the very first thing we got for the room. On our trip to Disneyland, we found a shop where an artist will draw characters for you. It was such a sentimental thing and it’s really beautiful. 

That’s the nursery folks! Next time I post, it should be to introduce our newest family member, so, until then!


36 Weeks + Gestational Diabetes


It’s been a while hasn’t it? This week is week 37 of our pregnancy! That means in about 3-4 short weeks, this little guy should be making his big arrival. 

Since I checked in last, I had my Gestational Diabetes screening. I chose not to do the traditional fasting glucose test because I didn’t feel consuming that much straight glucose on an empty stomach was a good representation of how I would normally be consuming a great amount of sugar. This meant that I did glucose monitoring at home, 4 times a day fasting and after each meal and reported these numbers to my doctor’s office. Unfortunately, my regular eating made my numbers higher than my doctor would have liked to see. I was very upset at first, feeling like I had failed. But I came around to understand that one, pregnancy hormones were disrupting my insulin production and two, with adjustments in my diet, I could control this. So I began carb counting and after some serious portion and carb control, I’m happy to say that I’m controlling my numbers well up until this point. I do miss pizza but hopefully after I deliver, my insulin production will stabilize and I can resume my regular eating habits. I will say that it has been a blessing in disguise in that I have been forced to be very conscious of my eating habits and my weight gain has been well controlled because of that. Lots of veggies and fruit!

Since I posted last, I was also very fortunate to be given two baby showers, one from my wonderful coworkers and one from my family. It definitely made it feel very real that we’re approaching our baby boy’s birthday. We had so much fun eating delicious food, playing games and opening gifts. I feel so very grateful for all the love for our growing family.

Here’s an update on the pregnancy:

Due Date: August 24, 2016

Weight Gain: 26 pounds

Exercise: At this point I’m not really doing any workouts but I’m staying active in my everyday life. Through all of the nursery projects, there’s been lots of climbing up and down the stairs as the nursery is farthest from the garage. 

Stretch Marks: Yes, pretty much everywhere but my actual belly. I expected them though as I’ve got them before pregnancy too.

Maternity Clothes: Always when I’m out in public. At home, I can still wear my yoga pants and oversized t-shirts to do chores and yard work in.

Belly Button: It’s pretty much flat except when I’m sitting a certain way or baby is positioned behind it and it will pop out.

Sleep: I’m still sleeping pretty well considering. I still loathe side sleeping and so do my hips but I manage. Then there’s the standard peeing all night long but all to be expected.

Cravings: I haven’t really had cravings like I did in the first and second trimesters but since carbs are limited for me now, pizza is something I wish I could indulge in.

Symptoms: Some tightening here or there but otherwise, not much going on in this department.

Movement: Lots! This guy is active!

What I Miss: Beer!!! Still beer.

What I’m Loving: Feeling baby move all the time. Knowing he’ll be here so soon!!

What I’m Looking Forward To: Finishing the nursery. It’s almost done you guys! I’ll share pictures soon! Also, I started my maternity leave today so conquering my to-do list in preparation for our due date.

Best Moment This Week: Two things in one day, a very positive 36 week appointment and my last day of work! 

Now for some pics of the belly!

34 Weeks
35 Weeks
36 Weeks

Until next time!


Pregnancy Update: 23 Weeks

I’m sorry I haven’t been posting regular baby updates. Today I am 23 weeks and 5 days.

Here’s a little more info:

Due Date: August 24, 2016

Weight Gain: I haven’t paid much attention but maybe 13 pounds?

Exercise: Crossfit once a week, sometimes two and lots of activity around the property working on projects.

Stretch Marks: None yet, been buttering the belly almost every night.

Maternity Clothes: YES. Otherwise I look like a hillbilly with a beer belly poking out of my shirts. 

Belly Button: It’s been slowly flattening out. Patrick says he can tell when I’m full because it gets extra flat. It’s so crazy how different it looks!

Sleep: Pretty good when my hips aren’t hurting. Allergies keep me up more than that right now though. I’m using the snoogle to learn to side sleep. This mama is a back sleeper guys! Side sleeping is hard!

Cravings: Salty stuff usually. Pickles and potato chips are as weird as it gets. Sandwiches and watermelon and strawberries too.

Symptoms: Not much. A little round ligament and hip pain here or there but that’s it right now.

Movement: Lots! All day, especially when I eat. Baby likes food just like mama!

What I Miss: Beer!!! On a hot day I want an ice cold beer.

What I’m Loving: Feeling baby move all day long and looking bigger and bigger. The belly is undeniable.

What I’m Looking Forward To: Getting more of the nursery put together. The walls are painted but we’d like to do crown molding and baseboards, some new shades, a new ceiling fan and I’m making curtains before we get to the furniture and things on the walls.

Best Moment This Week: Technically last week, Patrick got to feel baby move for the first time. So cool to share with him!

22 weeks
21 weeks
20 weeks
And what you’ve really all been waiting for…

baby is a….


We are so excited to be welcoming our son at the end of August.

President’s Day Weekend and a Big Announcement!

Wow, has it really been almost a month since my last post on the Kitchen?! I must say, my motivation has been lacking in the blogging department. I’ve been tired and queasy. Many of you probably already saw our announcement yesterday on Facebook but just to make sure all parties are aware, yes, Patrick and I will be welcoming a new family member to the Farmhouse Kitchen this year.

We are so excited to be sharing the big news with family and friends as we round the corner for the 13 week mark. I’m finally starting to get my energy back and it’s like I’m a new woman.

We’ve had the most BEAUTIFUL weather in Northern California this last couple of weeks. I’m talking 72 degrees and sunny and just in time for the long weekend. This Saturday we ran our weekly errands before heading into Folsom to do some maternity clothes shopping for me (work pants are tight!). We also picked up a paint sample at Home Depot and I snagged some strawberry plants and seeds while we were there. Then we had our Valentine’s Day early with a trip to Snook’s Chocolate Factory on Sutter Street, dinner at Milestone in El Dorado Hills and an evening showing of Deadpool. Milestone was incredible, the burger I had was excellent. I only wish I could enjoy the extensive wine list they had! And Deadpool was hilarious. Even if you’re not a big fan of superhero movies, it is not anything like the typical marvel movies. We laughed the whole time and were sad when it was over.

Sunday we put together our announcement above and called family and friends to share the good news. It was so fun hearing the reaction from family and the good wishes from so many friends too. Then we planted our first tree in our new home. Remember the honeycrisp apple tree we planted symbolically for our wedding? Well we dug it up and brought it with us from the old property since it was still small. It’s been in a plastic barrel until now. It’s got a happy home in the ground now.

I exercised Barry too and we did some other projects around the house including putting the paint sample up in the nursery. I think we have a winner! I’m going to pick up some fabric samples at Joann to be sure we have a pallette we like. We made maple apple chicken and roasted potatoes and asparagus for dinner and watched the new Cinderella movie. I really enjoyed it. 

Now today I went for a workout before we set in on the next tree hole. This one is where an old tree was though so removing the stump is going to take more time than our last tree. We got some brush burned while we did that though. Later, after lunch, I planted my new strawberry plants and started some seeds. Did I show you guys my greenhouse? It was my Christmas present from Patrick.

I started a bunch of herbs and some echinacea, we’ll see how they go! 

Well that about catches you all up on the happenings here. I hope you all had a great weekend whether it was long like ours or not!

Until next time,


Conquering Breakfast This Year

Howdy everyone!

I apologize for the lapse in posts here at the kitchen. Time has gotten away from me lately. But here I am back today to talk about the next episode in New Year, New-trition. In trying to keep the topics sequential, I’m moving from what should be your first step each morning, water, to the next and arguably just as important, breakfast!

Now we all know breakfast is important. Getting something in your belly to fuel the first half of your day is essential. But let’s talk about why what you eat is important too. Breakfast does just that, it breaks the fast we’ve had all night, and when revving our metabolisms up after a fast, we want to do it with nutrients that set us up for success all day. A bowl of sugary cereal is fuel, but equivalent to lighter fluid if you look at our bodies like engines. It burns fast and quick. That leaves us tired and hungry sooner rather than later. But protein and fat in the morning burn slow and more evenly, keeping us going longer and without a sugar crash. 

Here are my tips for choosing a good breakfast:

1. Eggs, eggs, eggs

I can’t say enough about one of our most perfect foods. They’re full of protein, healthy fat (don’t worry about the cholesterol in those yolks, newest studies have refuted the claims about heart disease, thank goodness!) and chock-full of vitamins and minerals like choline that we are notoriously low in. 

2. Ditch the sugar

As Isaid earlier, sugar added to breakfasts really just burns off too quickly and to add to that, any excess gets stored as fat. And trust me most added sugar is excess as far as your body is concerned. Complex carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, potatoes, and even whole grain bread are your better bet over sweetened cereal and yogurt. A teaspoon of honey or some fruit in your plain yogurt will go over much better than the pre-sweetened flavored ones.

3. Don’t forget the fat

I’m sure some of you have heard about the benefits of stacking types of nutrients. Never eat a carbohydrate without some protein, etc. That’s because when we consume different types of nutrients together, they are broken down slower and therefore keep us full longer and eating less over the course of the day. Fat is the slowest to be broken down and adding it to your breakfast will actually suppress appetite and assist in fat loss. Full fat cheese, butter, avocado, peanut butter are all great sources of fat to add to your breakfast.

4. Don’t let time get the best of you

Whether it be getting kids ready for school or savoring those extra 10 minutes in bed, we often find a reason to skip a complete breakfast. Maybe we grab a sugary granola bar or skip it altogether. Whatever your hurdle is, I challenge you to find the solution. Maybe it’s cooking up an egg bake or crustless quiche on Sunday to eat all week. Maybe it’s waking up 10 minutes earlier to cook a breakfast that sets you up for success each day, either way, it’s worth it, I promise!
I’ll be back next week with some delicious breakfast recipes. Until then, take the time to fuel your day with a complete breakfast! My personal favorite is a piece dave’s killer bread toasted with two scrambled eggs and melted cheddar on top. On a regular rushed morning though, I combine mashed banana, full fat cottage cheese and peanut butter. Doesn’t look pretty but tastes great and keeps me full until lunch most days.

Drinking More Water In The New Year

Howdy everyone!

As promised, I’m here with the first edition of New Year, New-trition. 

Today I’m talking about water. Are you drinking enough of it? Do you know why it’s so important? Maybe you already do and that’s awesome. I find it’s easy to drink less water this time of year. It’s cold after all, and we sweat less. But we still need lots of it. 

Our bodies are built to handle some water loss but as we continue to lose without replenishing, there are negative effects on the body. I go into some more specifics here.

There’s also the comparison of water to soda, juice, milk, etc. Water helps keep us full and our metabolisms running optimally where the sugars in those other beverages can cause cravings, increase in appetite and weight gain. As your beverage of choice, there’s really no contest between water and its challengers.

Ok, how much water?

Women are recommended to drink 2.2 liters a day and men, 3 liters. Consider that this is for the average person. The water loss you have during a workout that involves a 3 mile run at 4:30pm in August is going to require you drink a lot more water. Use those recommendations as a baseline and add from there as needed. 

How to drink more water

If you know you’re not drinking enough water, or are opting for sugary soda or peppermint mochas, make a goal to choose water instead. Having a refillable water bottle with measurements can help greatly. Set a goal to drink a set amount of water by a certain time. My water bottle holds a liter. I aim for a liter before lunch and another before I head home from work. Setting a specific goal like that is simple to attain and easy to track. Another idea is to infuse your water with your favorite fruit or flavor like lemon or mint.

Conversation Time

Do any of you have a trick for drinking more water? Is drinking more water one of your new year’s goals?

Preparing for the New Year

Howdy everyone!

I hope you had a Merry Christmas with your loved ones. We had a wonderful day at home with family and way too much food of course.

I hope you are enjoying the delicious food this time of year. I wanted to end 2015 with some thoughts on preparing for any healthy changes you might be planning to make in the kitchen that have to do with your diet. Many make New Year’s resolutions and fail at them because they weren’t prepared. To help avoid that, I’m talking about what you can do before the new year starts to get on the right track. Starting the first week of 2016, I’ll be doing a series of blog posts geared to help with common areas of improvement in diet and healthy habits.

As we move into the New Year, here are my best tips for success.

1. Think about what you’d like to improve upon. 

   Make a goal. Small or large, make a plan for how you’ll accomplish it. Remember S.M.A.R.T. goals are specific, meaningful, actionable, realistic and timely. Sit down and write all of this out and make measurable short and long term goals that you really follow up on. Appointments in your calendar can do the remembering to check in for you.

2. Get it out of the house.

    Get through the last of your junk food and don’t buy anymore. Have a soda problem? Or a                      sweet tooth? Get rid of the temptation at home. Take it to work, donate it, trash it, whatever it takes.

3. Invest in a water bottle.

    If you don’t already have a refillable water bottle with measurements and that holds around a liter, consider getting one. The measurements allow for goals to be quantified and having it on you at all times means no reason to buy a soda or other sugary drink.

4. Invest in the right tools.

    Getting into cooking veggies sure is a lot easier with some sharp knives. And packing healthy lunches for the week requires good sturdy containers. How about a crockpot? Maybe you’ve got a Christmas gift card to use or a sale to hit up where you could score what you need.

5. Buy a planner or a new app

    I rely on a grocery list app I share with my husband and a recipe app to help sift through my many favorite recipes. These are such useful tools to implement meal planning and prep, coupled with the calendar app that’s already on your smartphone. If you’re more of a paper person, find a planner you love.

These are just a few ideas to think about. Whatever your goal is, I challenge you to take some kind of action to set yourself up for success. I look forward to talking more specifically about healthy changes in the coming weeks. And don’t worry, there’ll be yummy recipes too!

Have a great week!

Getting Into The Christmas Spirit

Hello everyone! 

I hope you had a great weekend. We just sat down after making two thirds of our Christmas gifts and finally getting lights on the tree. Woohoo! It really feels like Christmas now. 

We planned our Christmas menu among the rest of the two week’s meals and I’m feeling excited about all the goodies we’ll be eating. We also watched the first two The Santa Claus movies and listened to lots of Christmas music while it storms outside. What more could you ask for?

We’ll work on the ornaments and the last of the decor through this week after work. I have to be honest and say that after a solid eight hours of cooking gifts today, I’m pooped and we’re eating frozen pizza and chicken tenders for dinner. Hey! This is real life and I don’t make a home cooked nutritious meal every night! And you know what? I didn’t clean the house this weekend either. Does anyone ever get everything done they wanted to during the Christmas season? If you say yes, I might think you’re an alien.

Autumn posing as one of my elf helpers. No one would dare think she’s only there for snacks.

Barry got a hot bran mash while he weatherd the storm outside. That wind was howling! Hail too!

We’re off to start another week. One more full work week until Christmas! 

Conversation Time

What are your must-do things during Christmas time? 

Ours is definitely the tree cutting, decorating and cooking our Christmas gifts. Everything else is a cherry on top if we manage to fit it in. 

Christmas Tree Hunting 

Howdy everyone! 

How was your weekend? We started Saturday morning with a trip to Sweetie Pie’s in Placerville before heading tree hunting.

We took a long time hiking before we finally settled on a tree. We all agreed, we’ll have to try another farm next year because this one really didn’t have the type of full nobles we were looking for. But here’s a look at ours once we got it up.

After picking out the trees, we want to Brick’s in Placerville for drinks and appetizers. It was a really fun day.

Sunday we ran errands and did chores, including getting the tree put up. We’ll spend the evenings after work trimming it. I can’t wait to bust out the ornaments!

Now we’re settling in after some buttermilk fried chicken and biscuits for dinner and ready for another work week.

Let’s Chat

Are you done decorating for Christmas? I feel like this month got away from me already but hopefully after the tree is done, I’ll feel better about it.