Being Brickner : November 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


I wanted to fit in one more post before the craziness of the holiday season officially hits tomorrow, we really have so much to be thankful for this year & I wanted to thank YOU for being a part of it.  Your constant support of our family means so much to me, this community is the best, so supportive & incredibly inspiring.  I truly am thankful to be a part of it.

Also on the list of things to be thankful for, a few days off with my babe.  We kicked off our holiday shopping this past weekend, we went to the mall where Waverly informed me that she is "scared of Santa" but that she would like him to bring her anything that has to do with Sesame Street or Elmo.  Also, I got her a chocolate milk kids Starbucks cup & she was so very proud, calling it her "coffee".  My mini-me, I couldn't love her more.

We celebrated our annual friendsgiving over the weekend, one of my favorite traditions with my close friends!  I love that each year we keep getting bigger, adding more babies & bellies to the mix!  Definitely a reason to celebrate. :)

We made these sausage balls (a recipe passed down to us from my sister-in-law), I thought I would share for anyone who needs a last-minute, easy to make & delicious appetizer for the holiday weekend.  The ingredients are one tube of jimmy dean sausage, one small bottle of ranch, one package of colby jack cheese & a package of filo shells.
Cook the sausage, drain it (without rinsing it), then put back in the pan with the ranch & cheese.  Mix together before filling the filo shells with it & finally, bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.

Disclaimer, they are amazing & super addicting.  Don't be ashamed to eat more than your fair share, we all did.

Wishing you & yours the HAPPIEST Thanksgiving!!

Monday, November 24, 2014

13 Weeks

Shirt & Similar Overalls
Baby Brickner's Size:  A peach, our sweet peach!

Maternity Clothes:  I got a couple of these Gap pure body shirts & really love them, super comfortable & stretchy enough that they will last me through most of this pregnancy.  Also, I admit it, I was completely inspired by Mila Kunis's maternity style, she wore overalls with her bump so I decided to go for it, just bought them a couple sizes up so I can keep expanding them as the belly expands!  They might be THE most comfortable thing I have ever worn.  Another plus, my mom was with me & said she remembers wearing them the entire time she was pregnant with me, which just makes them feel special. :)

Sleep:  I finally feel like I am starting to get a little energy back, which pretty much makes me feel like a million dollars at this point!  I still napped both weekend days while Waverly was sleeping (one day with her, those are the best!), but other than that, haven't been fighting to keep my eyes nearly as much as I have been. Still, by the time 8pm rolls around, it is definitely time for bed. Things are crazy our way. ;)

Best Moment This Week:   Waverly & I have had some really great afternoons, with a little pep back in my step I felt so much better (plus way less mom guilt) with some extra energy to play with her.  We painted, baked blueberry muffins, did our nails, & managed to fit in a play date with another little girl her age.  My kind of week.  Also, I even made dinner a couple of nights. Seriously, there were moments that I wasn't sure if I would ever make dinner again.  So that was a serious win.

Miss Anything:  My normal appetite, free from these crazy aversions that I have had both pregnancies.  I am always hungry, but most things sound awful, even things that are my favorite foods not pregnant.  Yet bring me all the carbs you want, the one food group that has gotten me through the past 12 weeks!

Movement:  I am convinced that I am feeling this babe at night, it's like a wiggling sensation & my favorite EVER!  It's always on the same side of my belly, which is the side that we always find the baby's heartbeat on when we use our doppler.  (We have one my mom bought us from my first pregnancy, a similar one can be found here!).

Cravings:  Still all carbs.  Also, it's crazy how thirsty I am, drinking water all day long & still wanting more.

Queasy or Sick:  Definitely not 100% me yet, but slowly getting there & I could not be happier! Bring on the second trimester!!

Looking Forward To:  Thanksgiving!  So excited for a couple days off work to spend with the family & then some shopping on Black Friday.  I will definitely be making a couple for purchases for Waverly plus also, a couple gender-neutral ones for her baby brother or sister!

 I realized that I never shared Waverly's reaction to being a big sister.  With so much to update on over the beginning of our pregnancy, I didn't be to be overwhelming, yet she is already SO excited & it is the sweetest.  She definitely knows she is going to be a big sister, though she thinks the babe is in her belly.  She has randomly told a few people that she was a big sister (before we were ready to tell anyone), & will be sure to remind me every once in a while.  In case I forgot. ;)
Nothing makes me happier than thinking about her in this role, I know she is going to be a little rock star.

Hope you had a great weekend, happy holiday week!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Thanksgiving Planning

Happiest Friday & also, happy LESS THEN one week until Thanksgiving!  We are super excited for the holiday this year, all of us, not just the one of us who has the excuse to eat more than her fair share of turkey & mashed potatoes.  On a side note, this is the second Thanksgiving I have gotten to experience pregnant & while I promise I didn't plan it that way, I admit that I really love the timing of it.  I am obviously thankful for a lot this year, one of those things being a holiday which involves a lot of food. ;)

We had originally planned to travel to see family in West Virginia for the holiday, we were really looking forward to taking Waverly Maye to the mountains & to possibly experience our first ever white Thanksgiving!  Then ultimately we decided it was best to stay at home, I am just not feeling like myself quite yet and we felt like it was best to take my time off work to rest & relax at home with Waverly.  So plan B, we are going to have a relaxing morning at home with the Macy's parade & breakfast, then a double-header of dinners with both sides of the family.  Followed by round three of one more house for dessert, where we will most likely strategize for our annual early morning of Black Friday shopping.  A little crazy & chaotic, but full of loved ones, just the way we like it!

I love planning fun outfits for Waverly for the holidays, any excuse to dress up makes me happy, especially when it's a celebration.  Right now I am all about neutrals, I shared these looks on Vanessa's blog a couple weeks ago & think they would be perfect for your little lady or man for the holiday.

For Waverly, I like to get a fun, new headband for special occasions. I ordered this one for Thanksgiving dinner & think it will be perfect all year long!  And if this little babe in my belly is a boy, I would do the same with fun hats (I already have my eye on this one for next Christmas, WAY too cute) or fancy shoes.  A pair of moccasins would be perfect for either!!

We wish all the happiest weekend & last week before the holidays officially kick-off!  What are your plans?  Do you have any fun traditions during this Thanksgiving week?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

It's The Little Things: Waverly Lately

If I'm honest, the whole two-year old status scared me a little bit.  We have all grown up hearing about the "terrible two's" & something told me that Waverly would not be exempt, among many things, she is opinionated, strong-willed, & knows exactly what she wants.  Fast forward to now, with Waverly two months from two & a half, there is no doubt that this is my favorite age yet.  There have been so moments recently that I have just wanted to freeze time at this exact age, she is so much fun, so smart, & most of all, incredibly loving.  As always, I am obsessed with her & this little person she is becoming more everyday.

I can't even believe how much Waverly can say now (or how witty she is), just when I think I have heard it all, she comes up with something else to crack us up.  She is constantly talking, which everyone says she gets from me, so the two of us rarely are quiet together, ever.  When we sit down to dinner every night, she says "soooooooo, how was your day?".  It is the sweetest, one of my favorite moments that we get to spend together & I always look forward to it.

She loves so many things, but mostly our dog who she calls a "good boy" & her "best friend".  It took a little while for her to understand why he can't come with us to the grocery store or to the mall, but now she gives him a hug before we leave while "explaining" to him why he can't come.  She is so good to him, making sure she pours his food so he can eat at the same time we do & obviously, sneaking him her food between bites.  Second to only the dog, she loves her babies, lines them up & takes care of them every single day.  I walked in her holding one in the corner in a time-out the other day, counting "1, 2, 3 ... ."  She forgets nothing. ;)

Lately she has an obsession with school buses, we watch the kids get off the bus on our street everyday & she loves it.  She always tells me she wants to go to school, on the bus, which is way too much for my mama heart to even think about right now.  I told her I would miss her too much, she said "mommy, I will see you tomorrow, ok?."  She still watches me drive from the house each morning to school, she waves so fiercely & while it is never easy leaving, knowing that she understands where I go makes it much more bearable.

Almost all of Waverly's favorite activities involve moving, she loves to dance, to sing, & is always laughing.  Just like since she was a baby, she loves being outside, it is her happy place & she can entertain herself for hours.

We have our moments, but at the end of the day (everyday), we tell each other how much we love each other & there is no better feeling than that.  She has forever changed me, the one who made me a mama, & I feel so lucky to keep her forever. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

12 Weeks

I went back & forth about weekly updates (especially with a two-year old to run after), yet ultimately, decided to go for it.  I already feel like I have forgotten so much of my pregnancy with Waverly Maye, so I know how much I will love to look back on these one day.  Plus, who doesn't love a good countdown?!  So HERE GOES, 12 weeks down & 28 to go! :)

Baby Brickner's Size:  A lime!

Maternity Clothes:  I remember showing pretty early with Waverly too, but there is just no comparison to this time!  Trying to hide this bump for the last month or so was such a challenge, especially since I am a (fashion) teacher with 28 kids in each class who have nothing to do but stare at me for long periods of time.  I am SO glad that the secret is out, that same rotation of loose fitting shirts & dresses was good to me, but starting to get very, very old.

Sleep:  The exhaustion this pregnancy is seriously insane, I have never experienced anything like it! True (possibly sad) story, I haven't seen the clock hit 9pm in two months!  My poor husband, I am so exhausted by the end of the day, I can hardly hold a conversation.  So YES, at night, sleep is great, & very much needed!

Best Moment This Week:  Sharing the news!  Especially since we found out so early, it's been a long two months of keeping this a secret & has been SO much fun finally sharing the news.  It makes my heart happy to think of all the joy Waverly has brought our close family & friends, I know this babe will do the exact same. 

Miss Anything:  More than anything, I miss my energy to play with Waverly like I normally can. One day after work this week I was completely exhausted, it was all I could to to keep my eyes open & read books with her.  She brought me a blanket & said "oh, mama, you don't feel good, you lay down" while rubbing my belly.  I hate the fact that I don't feel 100% lately with her, yet then I remember that we are giving her so much more, a brother or sister for life ... which makes me feel so much better. :)

Movement:  I had convinced myself that I felt the baby the other night while laying down, then my OB told me there was no way, it was just gas. ;)  I am SO excited to feel (real!) movement soon, probably my favorite part of pregnancy the first time!

Cravings:  Pretty much all salt, sugar still makes me completely sick & leaves the worst taste in my mouth.  I love (or actually have a need for) all carbs, including potatoes, rice, & french fries.  It is so crazy to me how identical these cravings, plus aversions, are to my first pregnancy.

Queasy or Sick:  Yes & yes.  It's no fun, but my OB always tells me that she loves it, that it means that the baby is growing & things are happening as they should.  So honestly, if I hadn't felt that way this whole time I would have been nervous, & of course, it is worth it !  Yet I am definitely looking forward to the second trimester, hoping to turn a corner very soon!

Looking Forward To:  Our next appointment!  They are my favorite, at our last ultrasound the babe was moving so much, waving its hands back & forth like he/she wanted us to know they were in there!  Both my husband & I have been talking about it since, it's so crazy to think that before long, this babe will be a little person just like Waverly.  It really is surreal & nothing short of amazing.

Also, the biggest thank you to our friends at Tiny Prints, we worked with them to create a card to announce the news of our pregnancy to family & friends!  As always, the final product (card design found here) was beautiful & they were so great to work with.  Be sure to check out their site for your holiday cards or purchases!

Lastly, I meant to announce this earlier (can I blame it on pregnancy brain?!), the winner of the Candace's Calling garland is Courtney Bilos.  Congrats, email me with your address & I will send you your prize!! Happy week ahead!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Five on Friday

Happiest Friday, friends!!  This week flew by, I had Tuesday off work & got to spend the day with Waverly, my favorite kind of day!  Also in positive news, can you even believe Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away?!  Sign me up for extra mashed potatoes plus macaroni & cheese this year, I am totally pulling the pregnant card on this one. ;)

1.  I recently picked up these black combat boots for Waverly, they are from H&M (in-store) which has been one of my go-to places to shop lately!  I couldn't get them to the register fast enough, I also love that her little sister OR brother can get some use out of them too in approximately three years. 

2.  Also in shoe news, one of my favorite pairs of boots from last year is back at Old Navy.  I love the fur on them plus they are super comfortable & easy to put on!  We got the next size up for Waverly & I can't wait for her to wear them all winter long. :)

3.  Is anyone else's kid obsessed with cell phones?!  We really are trying to work on it, girlfriend wants it all the time so lately we have settled on some educational toddler apps.  Also, she loves "all about that bass" & could sing it all day long while laughing hysterically.

4.  My cravings (& aversions) have been identical this pregnancy to my first.  I normally love sweets & eat them almost every night before bed, but both times, have not even been able to think about chocolate or really sugar in general.  You would think it would help with the weight gain, but I have a NEED for carbs that entirely makes up for it. ;)  This week I was determined to find a sweet I could still eat, so Waverly & I made this poke cake with banana pudding/vanilla wafers.  Both Waverly & I recommend this one, it is absolutely delicious & fun to make!

5.  With all the excitement of this week, I didn't get a chance to share pictures from a wedding we attended last weekend but it was so much fun!  Waverly came to the rehearsal dinner with us on Friday & then my in-laws watched her while we had a wedding date on Saturday.  I actually stayed up past my recent bedtime of 8pm, which really, was a huge deal for us! ;)

Wishing you all a fun & warm weekend!  We have big plans to make appetizers & watch the Alabama game tomorrow, hoping it's a good one, ROLL TIDE!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Baby Brickner #2

First, THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts - for both your sweet well wishes & congrats on baby #2!  We truly are overwhelmed with love, being able to share what we have been so excited about has been so much fun & I really can't thank you enough or explain how much your support means to us.

Both my husband & I are from families with four kids, we have always been vocal about wanting a big family of our own so I know that for some (like my mom), this announcement was long-awaited.  Keeping it real though, it took a while for me to really be able to wrap my mind around another babe.  Even though I have always known that we definitely wanted more, it wasn't until very recently that I completely felt ready to start growing our family again.  We decided at the beginning of the summer that we would enjoy every moment together as a family of three (especially with Waverly Maye at such a fun age!!) & plan to start trying for baby two in the fall.  We are beyond thankful & feel so blessed that it happened so quickly, Waverly & her brother or sister will be one month away from three years apart!

We found out early, like crazy early. I just didn't feel right, after a couple days of heightened smells (even while passing the Starbucks at Target, my biggest giveaway) & weird, restless leg cramps at night I decided to take a test.  I thought it was still way too early so I really didn't give much thought to it, it was really, really early in the morning before work one day & my husband was fast asleep.  The "yes" showed up right away, I freaked out while running into the pitch black room waving the test back & forth screaming at him.  He thought that someone had broken into the house & jumped out at me in the bathroom, not quite the cute announcement I had planned (AT all), yet neither was that time I found out I was pregnant with Waverly & threw the test at his face.  I guess that's just our thing. ;)  We told close family members over the next couple of weeks but have mainly kept quiet since which has been hard, especially because of this bump, which I am convinced looks like my 20-week bump when I was pregnant with Waverly.

  Will we find out the gender?!  Um, YES!!  I have so much respect for people who wait but I am just not that cool, if there was a way to find out the day I saw the positive pregnancy test I would have been all about it.  We truly will be ecstatic either way!  In the week since sharing our news, so many people have asked if we are hoping for a boy. We would definitely love to have a boy at some point, to experience the best of both worlds & also, I think I would really have fun dressing a little man!  My younger brother & I are three years apart, same distance that these two babes will be, & we have the best relationship.  On the other hand, we adore having a little lady & would love for Waverly Maye to have a sister.  My sister & I are so close, there really is no relationship like it. :)  With that being said, we both have a feeling what this babe is, the same feeling, so I guess only time will tell.  We can't wait to find out!

I am one of those weird girls who loves being pregnant & I am confident that it will be no different this time, but the last couple of months have been pretty rough.  I was sick throughout my first trimester with Waverly too, yet this time seems way worse, I can't decide if I really feel worse or if it's the toddler I'm running after that is the difference-maker.  Exhaustion isn't even the word, most days I am a complete zombie & have felt hungover for about 8 weeks straight.  Yet not a moment goes by that I don't think it's worth it, we truly are beyond excited for this baby & all of the fun (plus craziness) that is to come!!  It almost seems more surreal this time now that we know what we get in the end, our hearts are so full right now & we can't wait to meet this babe or to see Waverly in her new role as big sister!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Baby Brickner: Round TWO!

We are OVER THE MOON to announce that Baby Brickner #2 will be joining our family in early June!

We found out super early, so it feels so good to finally have this secret out!  It's been a long (& exciting!) two months of pretending like we didn't want to burst over this big news for our little family.  I definitely plan to share more details, but for now, it probably goes without saying that Waverly Maye is ready to be promoted to her new role as a big sister!  My heart is already so full just thinking about her meeting the newest addition to our growing family, we just know she is going to be the best, sweetest big sis!! :)

We are so thankful for our family to grow again & are excited to share the journey with you!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Five on Friday

Happiest Friday, ladies!  We are knee deep in holiday excitement our way & loving the fact that there is LOTS to love out there right now!  Here are our FIVE:

1.  I hated pulling all the Halloween decor down over the weekend, but felt much better when we got to replace it with some fun Thanksgiving festiveness!  We kept out our burlap pumpkins & switched out our Halloween banner for this Thanksgiving one!  It's a recent find from TJ Maxx, which has been killing it in the decor section lately.

2.  It's official, we have pulled our crock-pot back out for the next couple of seasons.  I am ALL about some crock-pot cooking, so easy & ready when we get home from the day, yes, please!!  This week we made our go-to chicken recipe, which is completely fool-proof.  Just throw in a couple chicken breasts, a can of cream of chicken soup, potatoes, carrots, & onions to cook on high all day.  We add a can of green beans about an hour before we eat & usually serve over rice.  Waverly loves it too, which is an added bonus! :)

3.  I am drooling over Target's Christmas decor line (as usual), all of the golds are speaking my decor language!!  I picked up this pillow & a gold garland, I can't wait to use them in just a few short weeks.

4.  The weather has been so up & down lately that we literally can't keep up, both Waverly & I are battling colds because of it.  The good news is that it was warm long enough for Waverly to wear this corduroy jumper, so much cuteness!!  I'm just not ready to cover those legs up quite yet.

5.  Does anyone else get super excited about Christmas music & commercials already?!  I know it may be too early, but nothing beats walking in the mall listening to holiday tunes.  My all-time favorite is Santa Baby, so excited that Waverly will be able to sing it with me this year!

Cheers to the weekend, we have a rehearsal dinner tonight & a wedding tomorrow, complete with a babysitter!!  So excited for some adult time with the hubs.  Wishing you all a very, very happy one!
Thanks to April & the ladies of this link-up!  XO

Monday, November 3, 2014

Halloween 2014

First, happiest November, everyone!!  Waverly & I hit up Target plus the mall this weekend & were way too excited over the Christmas decorations & (maybe even better), Christmas music. :)  Tis' the season, I can't even believe my favorite time of the year is finally here!

We had such a fun Halloween, Waverly had an absolute blast & we had the best time experiencing it with her.  This was the first time was stayed at our house to trick or treat, we have really gotten to know our neighbors & live around a lot of kids so we knew Waverly would be all about going up & down our street with everyone dressed up.  We set up a table at the end of our driveway with candy for the kids plus cupcakes & other treats for us, we also made a batch of chili inside & brought out bowls while we sat by the table.  The weather got pretty cold so my husband made a bonfire in the driveway, so much fun!!

Cupcake Holders
AND Waverly's costume!! :)  I came up with the "Wonder Waverly" idea over the summer (so funny that I used to find my own costumes the week of ...), mostly because it just fits her daring, sassy little personality so well.  I wish I could say I was responsible for actually creating the costume, but other than finding the red bodysuit online, my talented mother-in-law gets all the credit on this one.  She made the skirt out of blue tulle & found the perfect gold fabric to make the band around the waist plus the W's on the bodysuit.  The rest of the gold fabric was used for the crown, the arm bands (which were slap bracelets just covered!), & my favorite part, the boots!  We actually just put boots on her we already had & used the gold to cover them.  The stars were made from a shape-cutter from Micheals.  Waverly LOVED her costume, I'm convinced she was extra crazy all night because of it!

We always laugh because as outgoing as Waverly is around us, it usually takes her some time to warm up to new people.  She loved trick or treating down our street, as long as mama was holding on to her. ;)  We took turns staying at the house with the candy & taking her around the neighborhood, it was so much fun & I am already looking forward to next year!!

The rest of our weekend was cold & rainy, we welcomed it with open arms since we all were experiencing quite the Halloween hangover (not the kind I used to get in college, the kind from lots of festiveness jam-packed into one little week).  We hope you all had the best holiday, I have loved seeing all the cute, cute costumes! XO