A Wedding

(captured a little bit of magic)

(Vegan meal option)

(Ryan-the groom and Damien)
(The lovely bride Stacie and I)

This weekend the wedding we had been getting ready for took place. Ryan, Andrew's twin brother, married his long time girlfriend Stacie.  It was a lovely little affair. Actually, it was a pretty big affair. Lots of lovely people, food, dancing, drinks, and love. I will admit I was nervous for Amar'e being a flower girl, only for the reason that she is two and has a mind of her own. Damien was a groomsman ,and I knew he would be fine, so most of  my attention was on Amar'e and ensuring she was where she was suppose to be at the right time...everything went just fine!What a relief! Gwen (the other beautiful flower girl) and her mother were a HUGE help!!(One million thank yous!!!) My only regret would be not getting enough pictures...but once again, I had to keep my eye on Amar'e.

We would like to thank you Mr and Mrs. Ryan Larochelle for having us be a part of your very special day! We were very honored to be part of such an important day in your lives. We wish you the best!!! Oh, can we ask a little favor? More cake please!! :) :) xoxo

What did you do this weekend?
Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs


Green Beans and Tomatoes {Easiest side dish or meal ever}

I want to share something that I've been eating ever since I was a little girl. This ridiculously easy dish is one my grandmother would make for me all of the time when I was younger. In reality, it's her recipe that I've continued to make for myself and my family. This dish could be used as a side dish or as a meal, in which I often have. It only take a few minutes to make, and you can add whatever you want to it.

-Olive oil
-A large can of whole peeled tomatoes, peeled plum tomatoes, or diced tomatoes. Your choice
-3 cans of green beans, any style. I use french style. Fresh is always great too.
-Garlic powder. Fresh is alway good as well
-Salt to taste

 Heat olive oil in pot, add your tomatoes. I always cut them up in the can before. Bring them to a good bubble.

 Strain you green beans really well. Put in colander and press to get out as much moisture as you can.

 Once your tomatoes have been bubbling a bit (few minutes at most), add your garlic and your green beans.

 Cook off excess moisture until you get the consistency you want. I usually simmer for about 5-8 minutes once everything is added. 

Serve as a meal or with your meal. 

What have you been cooking?


17 Weeks and a new sponsor

I wasn't able to get my 16 week post up in time. Mainly because I couldn't get a good picture. Yah, I know lame excuse, but it's true. I really have been working on finding a perfect spot to take these weekly pictures, but nothing has been great yet, and I am still no pro at self portraits. I am hoping to learn a few things from an upcoming DSLR class I will taking at the end of the week. I am so very excited about this class. I hope to use a few things I learn in the class to get some lovely pictures of the wedding Andrew, Damien, and Amar'e are in this Saturday.

How far along? 17 Weeks

Total weight gain: 3lbs (no weight gain in the last month)

Maternity clothes? Nope 

Stretch marks? No new ones!

Sleep: I've been sleeping very well lately. My shoulder had been keeping me up at night, but a cortisone shot took care of that problem.

Best moment this week: Getting kicked from the inside. Yes, we are gettting little kicks! Lots of them.

Miss anything? Being able to sit, stand, bend over normally. Sciatica is horrible!

Movement:Yes, yes, yes. Lots of movement.

Food cravings: Fruits and vegetables,lemons,tomatoes,nachos, chocolate chip cookies, salt, this chickpea concoction that Andrew whipped up one day for lunch....Im hooked. I will be doing up a food post about it.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Pretty much over this part of the journey.I hope.

Gender: We will not be finding out the gender until the day the baby arrives.

Labor signs: No way.

Symptoms: My exhaustion has disappeared! Bye-bye unproductive Desiree. Hello, superwomen! :)

Belly button in or out? In.

Wedding rings on or off? On.

Happy or moody most of the time: Getting some mood swings on and off but in a much better mood lately.

Looking forward to: Our upcoming ultrasound on 6/5! At the last appointment I mentioned to the doctor the movement I had been feeling was a bit different than with my previous babies, and I made a little joke about maybe there is two in there. Well, we were able to get a heartbeat on both sides of my abdomen (but this could be the placenta giving off the other pulse we picked up), and I am measuring a couple weeks ahead ( I am only 5'1" and very petite, not a lot of room to be growing another human with). She asked me if I was sure about the dates, and I told her 100%. She went ahead and scheduled me for an ultrasound for sooner rather then later (before our Florida trip).  Yikes...

P.S.-Check out my newest sponsor:



Give A Day Foundation
"Volunteers come from every religious, ethnic and economic background imaginable. Some volunteer once a week, some once a month, some once a year; however, volunteers share one thing in common: they want to help improve the lives of individuals and families and help build a stronger community.People helping people that's what we do. -Give A Day foundation."

Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs
The count has been reset on Top Baby Blogs. Please help us by giving us a little vote. :)


One year down....A lifetime to go.

Spinach and strawberry salad with sweet onion dressing(not shown)

It's May and that means many things for this family. For one, the weather will be nice from here on out until about Halloween (if we're lucky). Two, there is a wedding just around the corner, and in a few weeks we will be getting ready to pack for another trip to Florida! But this May is special because it makes one year of living a vegan life for us (Damien doesn't spend 100% of his time with me, and he doesn't have the option of a meatless life where he goes, and as hard as it is, it is out of my control).  By no means have we been perfect vegans, but we are pretty damn good.  This was a huge decision that I never thought I would make, or would have seen myself or family doing. To be honest, before becoming enlightened, I never gave a second thought to where any of my food came from. I didn't have a care in the world as to what I was eating or feeding the family. It even got dangerous at one point when Amar'e was 5 months old, she got salmonella poisoning. Ok, I've been in some scary situations before, but having my 5 month old suffer through this awful sickness was the worst thing I've been through. We were shocked that she had salmonella because she was exclusively breastfed and had not started solids yet. After deep thought, we have a couple of suspicions of how she may have got this. One, we ate ground chicken every single night and sometimes the dogs would get a hold of the packaging and take it away and eat what was left. (yuck!!) It is possible some got on to the floor where Amar'e could have come in contact with it. Second, we found out much later that there was a salomnella tainted dog food that had made people sick when coming into contact with it. It's possible the dog could have licked her hands, face, arms, and she may of contracted it that way. Either way, this was a huge eye opener for us that some foods can be dangerous, even though nothing changed for about 7 months after that. Once the inspiration came to make a huge lifestyle change, it all happened pretty quickly. We didn't throw away any food in order not to be wasteful. We ate what was left in the cupboards and fridge and then proceeded to change our grocery list for the next shopping trip. We haven't looked back since. The hardest part was giving up cheese. I will admit I've had cheese on a few occasions in the past year, and have been craving it during this pregnancy, but I'm doing my best to avoid breaking down. It is working so far.

I've also switched all of my beauty products over to products that contain no animal ingredients and that don't test on animals. Animal testing is horrendous! Don't take my word for it, watch the videos yourself. I refuse to have some innocent animal be tortured because I need to wash my hair or skin. There are other ways to test products and I'm more than willing to seek out products that don't test on animals. I've been extremely successful so far. I also feel much better getting ready in the morning knowing that me doing so didn't hurt anything. I am now in the process of finding products for Damien and Andrew to use that are cruelty free.  I plan on sharing what products I use in another post soon.

Going vegan has changed my life in many ways. I am now conscious about every move we make from the food we eat, to the second hand clothes we get, to the amount of waste we create. It is more like a vegan and conscious life for us. I've seen horrible things in the course of studying where food comes from and how it's made, and the effects it has on our planet. The same goes for beauty products. In some case these things have caused me to have a total breakdown. I've been extremely sensitive to animal abuse since I was a young child, but like most people I had no idea what the animals went through to be my food, or produce the milk I drank until I looked for the information myself.  Seeing what I've seen is enough for me to never go back down that path. If I can do it, anyone can.

I've taken my vegan conscious life one step further into animal activism. For me, becoming an animal activist made sense. I'm not the type of activist that is going to lecture you if you aren't vegan. I'm more like the email writing, educating, "let me inform you" type.  After all, it was the information and stuff  I discovered that changed me. And like I said, if I can change ANYONE can!

I will leave you with one last thought. This quote says it all:

"I don't want you to think like me, I just want you to think"-Anonymous

P.S.-I would like to take this opportunity to thank a dear friend of mine who has helped me find the information I needed to make the decisions that I've made for myself and my family....so a big THANK YOU Sarah.....and Happy Birthday!!! :)

Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs


15 Weeks

Im working on finding a better spot to take these weekly pictures. We don't have a full length mirror so it makes it a bit hard. It would also be helpful to have someone take the picture for me, but that not alway easy to do when schedules are all over the place. 

How far along? 15 Weeks 5 days

Total weight gain: 3lbs

Maternity clothes? No yet. 

Stretch marks? No new ones!

Sleep: The sleeping situation is getting better.

Best moment this week:Thinking I felt some movement:)

Miss anything? Being able to sit, stand, bend over normally. Sciatica is horrible!

Movement: I'm not sure. I think I've been feeling something.

Food cravings: Fruits and vegetables. Tomatoes. Nachos. Chocolate chip cookies, salt.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Pretty much over this part of the journey. Although with Damien, I was sick most of my second trimester instead of the first like with Amar'e.

Gender: We will not be finding out the gender until the day the baby arrives.

Labor signs: No way.

Symptoms:My exhaustion has returns.It is not as bad as it was before, but it is still hanging around, waiting to strike at about 1:15 p.m. every afternoon.

Belly button in or out? In.

Wedding rings on or off? On.

Happy or moody most of the time: Less moody than previous weeks.  A little less depressed then before. :) 

Looking forward to: Getting that awesome burst of energy during the second trimester as I did with Amar'e......I hope :) And Hearing the heartbeat again at the next apt on 4/16.

Happy Mother's Day!

Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs


Homemade, Vegan Beauty Recipes {Guest Post}

I hope everyone is enjoying the weather as much as I am! It has been beautiful here and I am finally able to open the windows, spring clean, and start on our garden. Spring is such a wonderful time to make things beautiful again, don't you agree? Well, your in luck because today I have Marcela De Vivo who is going to give you some wonderful homemade vegan beauty recipes! I am so very excited about this because homemade beauty tricks never disappoint me. Without further ado, take it away Marcela....

Homemade, Vegan Beauty Recipes
Spring is here, so why not celebrate the return of Mother Nature with these astoundingly natural and amazingly easy to prepare vegan modes of skin and hair care? 

Even non-vegans may want to check out these wholesome natural options, as they often promise the same—or better—benefits without the often dubious chemical ingredients of their drugstore counterparts.

Shampoos and Conditioners
Out of all the alternatives to cruelty-free beauty care products, shampoos and other hair applications can sometimes leave newcomers wary. The prevalence of oils can instill fear of greasy after-effects, while the thinner textures are a wide departure from the creamy consistency of drugstore hair products.

However, vegan hair recipes generally only include enough oils to replenish dry hair, and their watery nature does not lessen their effectiveness.  Since some mass produced animal-friendly hair supplies may contain parabens, a type of preservative that may be linked to hormone imbalance and even breast cancer, this simple homemade shampoo is worth exploring:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup liquid castile soap
  • 2 tsp jojoba or grapeseed oil
  • 1/8 cup aloe vera gel
  • 5 drops of essential oil of your choice

Simply combine in a shampoo-sized bottle and shake vigorously.  For people especially worried about overly oily hair, the jojoba and essential oils can be eliminated.

Exfoliating is essential for any beauty regimen, as it lets clogged pores breathe, cleans up blemishes, and gives skin a silky texture.  Vegan solutions, however, often boast the extra advantage of doubling as moisturizers, especially those that include essential oils.   

Depending on oils you use for these DIY delights, fragrances—and price ranges—can vary greatly, so have fun experimenting with substitutions.  First time users are sometimes put off by the use of salt as the granular element in most vegan scrubs, but salt is remarkable for flushing out toxins and infusing the skin with beneficial minerals.

Here are two favorite selections:

Brown Sugar Body Scrub
This staple is so simple you probably won’t need to make a trip to the grocery store for its basic ingredients:

  • ½ cup sea salt (Himalayan Pink sea salt is known to be the best)
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup brown sugar (the dark kind is preferable)
  • 1-3 drops of any essential oil if scent is desired

Mix these elements well and put the mixture in a shower-friendly container.  After you’ve rinsed off, apply to your skin with a circular motion, then rinse and gently towel-dry.  With its olive oil base, this scrub makes post-bath moisturizing unnecessary.

Essential Oil Ambrosia Scrub
This is as exotic as the last recipe is no-frills, though in the end it’s simply a sophisticated variation on the base of all natural scrubs:  a highly moisturizing, invigorating, yet light skin experience. The ingredients are:

  • ½ cup fine Bolivian pink salt
  • 1 ounce papaya oil
  • 1 ounce cherry kernel oil
  • 15 drops rose otto essential oil
  • 30 drops sandalwood essential oil

You may want to replace the costly essential oils with sandalwood and red rose fragrance oils, but as the Bolivian salt gives the scrub a delightful pink glitter. Substitutions will subtract from the full experience.

Maybe no other member of the skin care family provides the same sense of deep rejuvenation than face masks—yet they are the most likely to contain an arsenal of synthetic and/or animal-tested products.  Fortunately, homemade vegan alternatives are simple to make, and rely almost exclusively on ingredients you’d find in a healthful breakfast: oatmeal, orange juice, yogurt, and coffee.

A perfect illustration of the elegant purity of vegan masks is the strawberry and rice milk variety.  Simply mash 6 strawberries and ½ tablespoon organic rice milk into a thick paste, apply to your face, and let stand for 15 minutes before rinsing.  As strawberries are packed with salicylic acid, this is one of the very best home-grown ways of eliminating outbreaks of acne.

Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer from Los Angeles. She specializes in a variety of health topics, from covering special needs, holistic and alternative therapy issues, to blogging about fitness, beauty and skin care

Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs


Surprise! There's a baby on the way!

Well, it has been really hard keeping this news to ourselves for 14 weeks, but now we don't have to anymore. Over the weekend we broke our wonderful news that we are expecting again to our friends and family. We couldn't be more excited! Actually I have a few more people to tell, but I don't think they read my blog. If they do, I will surely find out soon. I am due on Halloween, which is extra special for me because I love Halloween. Getting through the first trimester was rough. It wasn't that I was sick a lot, it was the fatigue that really brought me down. When the afternoon rolled around, it was like I couldn't keep my eyes open. It was horrible because I use that time, while Amar'e sleeps, to do things that I need to get done. I didn't have much morning sickness, although I would get pretty nauseous in the evenings, which I found terrible because I couldn't eat much for dinner. I'm just now starting to get away from the extreme fatigue and am starting to feel a bit more normal again. We have also decided that we will not be finding out the sex of the baby until the day he/she arrives. We tried, with Amar'e and had no luck. At first I was disappointed by this, but then it becomes a source of pride that I was able to not ask for another ultrasound just to find out. I wanted to wait until the day she arrived to find out. This was the best decision we made. So once again the baby will be "the baby" until Halloween time! I'm aiming to do a weekly pregnancy questionnaire along with a picture for the blog. We'll start with week 14:
 Tiny bump

How far along? 14 Weeks

Total weight gain: 2lbs

Maternity clothes? No yet. 

Stretch marks? No new ones!

Sleep: Just when Amar’e starts to sleep through the night and not waking up to nurse I get pregnant and sleep becomes a touchy subject. Some nights I sleep pretty good, other nights I feel like I didn’t sleep a wink. I don't drink anything after 8 o’clock to avoid nighttime bathroom trips.

Best moment this week: When I asked Amar’e what she thought about having a baby around. Her response was to hold her arms as if she was holding a baby and say “oh baby”, and hearing the heartbeat.

Miss anything? Merlot and beer! :)

Movement: Not yet. I felt Amar’e move at about 15-16 weeks. 

Food cravings: Fruits and vegetables. Tomatoes. Nachos.  

Anything making you queasy or sick: Coffee. I’ve been trying to give it up since we found out I was pregnant. The weaning process was hard at first because I was extremely tired come afternoon time. As soon as it started to me we queasy it was really easy kicking the coffee habit. I am only drinking one cup of tea in the morning and one in the afternoon. 

Gender: We will not be finding out the gender until the day the baby arrives.

Labor signs: No.

Symptoms: Sore boobs, the worst acne ever, depression/moodiness.

Belly button in or out? In.

Wedding rings on or off? On.

Happy or moody most of the time: Less moody than previous weeks. Fighting a little depression. 

Looking forward to: Having my energy back, the acne to go away.  

Click To Vote For Us @ the Top Baby Blogs Directory! The most popular baby blogs
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...