Friday, May 29, 2015

How Has It Been a Year Already?! (Time Flies)

One year ago yesterday, Dan graduated from the United States Air Force Academy after five long years of hard work.

One year ago tomorrow, we got married in the Pike National Forest in front of our families and friends.

The past year has included the honeymoon of our dreams, a move across the country from Colorado to Ohio (boo), graduate school for Dan and working full-time on my Etsy shop for me, attending our first "real" (outside of USAFA) ball, getting pregnant with our first baby, and lots of traveling to see friends and family.

I don't know how it's possible that it's been 365 days since the biggest, happiest week of our lives... but somehow, it has. And let me tell you all - that wait was so worth it. The week we spent with graduation and wedding festivities was exhausting but the most rewarding experience ever. From watching Dan march in his final parade as a cadet to pinning on his 2 Lt. shoulder boards to watching him shake hands with and salute Joe Biden, Vice President of the United States, to signify his completion of the Academy... those are moments we'll never get back but ones that are so ingrained in my memory that I smile and feel emotional every time I think of them.

Walking down the aisle toward Dan two days later so we could declare our love for each other and finally make things official - that, my friends, was the biggest accomplishment. We had so much fun, and as an introspective person, I have had so much fun this week watching so many friends go through these same milestones.

Cheers to one year - and here's to many more to come!


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

19 Thoughts (and Counting) About the Josh Duggar Scandal

It's been six days since news leaked information about Josh Duggar, now 27, molesting five young girls when he was 14/15 years old.

Anyone who knows me knows my fascination with this family. They had to have known a blog post was coming... and now that I'm home from our mini-vacation and have had time to sort my thoughts through, I present you with...

1. What Josh did is despicable, disgusting, and illegal. He was old enough to know better… if he came from a family that talked openly about abuse.

2. That said, the Duggars don’t provide sex education to their home-schooled children, and while it’s easy for us average, everyday people to agree that we would know better… if we literally had never heard anything about it, would we? Maybe, maybe not.

3. To be a pedophile, one must be 16 years old or older and have sexual contact with children. Josh was 14 / 15 at the time, and while we can all agree that most people would know better at that age, see point number 2.

4. Jim Bob is more to blame than anyone, in my opinion. He knew about the incidences after Josh told him, and he didn’t report it to police for a LONG time (over a year).

5. Maybe Jim Bob didn’t report the assault because he thought it was a family issue that could be resolved without getting authorities involved. I don’t know.

6. I hope the girls who were assaulted (who are presumably Jana, Jill, Jessa, and Jinger, though they obviously haven’t been identified) received professional help/counseling when this took place several years ago.

7. I also hope those girls weren’t shamed for being impure, because let’s face it, sexual contact before marriage is a huge no-no for the Duggars… and I can only hope that Jim Bob and Michelle realized they did nothing wrong, and they were attacked, not vice versa.

8. I wonder why the police officer who did learn about the case from Jim Bob did nothing about it. Is it because he’s a family friend? Or does he actually think Josh did nothing wrong?

9. I’m not sure if I would have been able to marry a man and have children with him knowing what he did, but Anna and her family were both aware of Josh’s past before she agreed to marry him… and that’s totally her prerogative and not my situation to judge.

10. I honestly can’t believe it took so long for this scandal to leak out. Considering how big the Duggar family is and how many people they know and work with on a daily basis… it astounds me.

11. That said, I’m not surprised at all that something *huge* happened at some point. With 19 children, shenanigans are bound to happen.

12. Seeing Mike Huckabee getting attacked and losing backers right before the presidential campaign goes full swing is kind of funny to me. I don’t like him (at all), so it amuses me despite the fact that I sort of agree with him that everyone makes mistakes, especially when they’re young.

13. I don’t like how this scandal was hidden for so long… but when it happened, the Duggars weren’t even famous, so it wouldn’t have even made headlines anyway. Now that they’ve been on TV consistently for several years, they’re well known… but when Josh was 14/15, they certainly weren’t.

14. I am glad that Josh was ready to admit it and talk about it when it did come up. He could have easily denied it, but he chose to take the higher road. While his actions were horrific, at least he can admit it when need be.

15. I feel the need to go back and watch all of the episodes of their show now and re-read their books just because. I wonder if there’s ever a moment that could give this away. I’m guessing no, but you never know.

16. I feel really bad for the girls who were molested, especially now. With it being more than ten years ago, those girls have grown significantly, matured in their beliefs, and presumably moved on. But now? Now, they have to re-live everything because they’re all over the Internet. They have to deal with the questions, the accusations, and the personal attacks on their family. I can’t even imagine.

17. It is peculiar to me that none of the Duggar kids with social media have posted anything on Instagram or Facebook since this came out last Thursday. Really weird.

18. While I do think it would be appropriate for TLC to cancel 19 Kids and Counting… I selfishly hope they don’t. I am fascinated by that family and love watching the girls go through their major life events, like weddings and babies! I may not agree with their politics or extreme views on religion, but I do think they are good, kind-hearted people.

19. Seriously, I am not here to judge anyone, let alone the entire family. The entire family did not commit a crime. The entire family is not full of bad people. They may be extreme Christians, and that may make some people (including myself at times) feel uneasy. But they aren’t all bad all the time. And the kids have no outside experience with a lot of social issues that most people get upset about (like how they are so anti-LGBT, which does make me mad too)… and they do good around them. They’re not perfect, just like you’re not. They have quirks, just like we all do.

(and counting) - Last but not least, I had NO IDEA so many of my friends knew so much about he Duggars and cared about their personal lives… but I’ve seen so many people either sticking up for them ferociously (when they never admitted to liking them before) or dogging them with what seems like threats (again, when they probably didn’t know who they were before). Weird.

Are you a Duggar fan?
Or are you fascinated by them at least?
Do you have a strong opinion either way about this issue?


Monday, May 25, 2015

Bumpdate: Weeks 23-24

If you missed my previous bumpdates, you can check out weeks 5-12 hereweeks 13-14 hereweeks 15-16 here, weeks 17-18 here, weeks 19-20 here, and weeks 21-22 here! I've decided that at the very end of this, I'm going to make a book out of all of my weeks so Baby Cookie can look back and read through them someday. I also hope to make one giant blog post compiling all of my weeks together to see the progress.

How far along? 24 weeks

Size of baby?
23 weeks: papaya
24 weeks: ear of corn

Total weight gain? I weigh exactly what I did when I found out I was pregnant. I'm not sure how... but since the doctors aren't worried, neither am I. 

Gender? GIRL! You can read about it here

Maternity clothes? I'm still wearing maternity clothes pretty much full time except for my pajama shorts and baggy t-shirts that I sleep in. I did buy a couple maxi dresses for "normal" people two sizes too big, and I hope they'll stretch out with my belly this summer. I found them at Walmart for $15 each (compared to $45+ for maternity dresses I've seen, ugh), so I bought two different colors/patterns. I wish I would have bought more now because they don't have anymore in stores or online. 

Sleep? I've been sleeping a little better since the last update, but now I'm waking up four times a night to go to the bathroom... oh well. At least I'm falling asleep quicker! 

Work outs? Walking on the treadmill feels so hard these days. It's like running used to be, which is crazy. Also, I keep randomly being out of breath after doing not much activity - like painting my toenails or trying to move positions on the couch. And it's only going to get worse... 

Cravings? No real cravings to report... still want a lot of fruit, I guess, but I always like fruit, so I'm not sure if that counts as a craving anymore.

Aversions? Chicken of all kinds... keep it away from me. 

Best moment of this week? I am finally feeling Baby Cookie move around a lot (and not just one flutter every few days), so that has been exciting! Now, I just can't wait until Dan can feel her too!

Worst moment of this week? Our AC has been out, and it was 85 here over the weekend. The company who has to fix it (since we're renting our house, we have to go with the one the owner wants) is the most unprofessional, awful company we have EVER worked with for anything, so it's been quite the hassle. Let's just say that it hasn't been working properly for over two weeks, and they're finally going to fix it tomorrow. What!? (They did come to fix it once, but they left it more broken than before...)

Looking forward to? I can't wait to meet our little girl! I know we still have a way to go, but it's so nice knowing that she would have a fighting chance if she were born now. Not that we want that to happen by any means... but we are so thankful that doctors would do their best to treat her now!

Was it difficult for you to move around this early?
When do you think Dan will be able to feel Baby Cookie moving from the outside?


Friday, May 22, 2015

Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffles: Recipe

Happy Food Friday, everyone! I am so excited to FINALLY be blogging about these delicious truffles today. I made them for... get this... CHRISTMAS last year. You read that right. I've been sitting on this recipe for FIVE MONTHS. Oops.

And don't fret: there are even more to come. I made four flavors of truffles, and I'll eventually share them all. The others definitely have bigger Christmas flavors, so it seems a little weird to post them in May... but probably in a couple months when I'm out of post topics you'll see a little bit of Christmas in July!

These are seriously so good. And just because I made them for Christmas doesn't mean they wouldn't be delicious any other time of year. Peanut butter is versatile, guys. And delicious. You should definitely make these. 

The peanut butter balls without the candy coating are also incredible stuffed inside cupcakes, in case you were wondering. Yum. 

Don't these just make you want to eat the entire tin? I want some right now, but next time, I'd make AT LEAST a double batch. I only didn't this time because I was making three other kinds as well to take to our family Christmas dinner. Everyone enjoyed these, and the peanut butter ones were the first to go! 

I highly recommend making them for a family gathering... or a military function... or just for yourself because you won't want to share!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffles


• 3 1/2 tbsp butter, melted
• 1/2 cup peanut butter
• 1+ cup powdered sugar
• 2 tbsp marshmallow fluff (optional)
• 8 oz chocolate candy coating


1. Melt butter in the microwave.
2. In a medium bowl, combine peanut butter, butter, and marshmallow fluff, and stir well to combine.
3. Using a spatula to mix, gradually add 1 cup of powdered sugar, adding more until dough is no longer sticky.
4. Whip peanut butter mixture until no longer clumpy looking.
5. Roll dough into a large ball, and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
6. Roll one inch balls from dough, and place on a cookie sheet.
7. Return the dough balls to the refrigerator.
8. Melt chocolate candy coating according to package directions.
9. Line another baking sheet with wax paper.
10. Dip dough balls into chocolate, and place on the wax paper to dry.
11. Refrigerate truffles when finished. 

Do you like truffles?
Are you a fan of chocolate and peanut butter together?


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The Month of May

May is not over quite yet, but it sure has flown by! I remember last May... leading up to Dan's Air Force Academy graduation and our wedding. The end of the school year and all the craziness that comes along with it.

This year has been slightly calmer, but I think May will always just be one of those months for us. It holds so many events of years' past, and Timehop sure doesn't help.

I have been aching to re-live last May. It was seriously such a magical month. But no worries - this month has been pretty great too! ...with the exception of another ER visit.

We bought some supplies to get started decorating Baby Cookie's room...

We went out together for Cinco de Mayo... don't worry, mine's a virgin daiquiri.

I had some hot cocoa to soak up the last few moments of cooler weather...

Gilligan was handsome as always... he loves hiding in the windows. 

I had another trip to the ER for kidney stones. This time, they admitted me to Labor and Delivery since that's where you go after 20 weeks, and I was 22 weeks. They didn't really know what to do, though... because they do babies, not kidney stones. 

We drove an hour to Columbus to watch Dan's old flying team from the Academy practice and compete at Nationals. It was so cool because I was never able to attend a competition when Dan was on the team because I was always busy teaching... so it was a lot of fun seeing them! 

I made delicious (and super easy!) cookies to take to the flying team... don't worry, I'll share the recipe for these bad boys soon! 

We pretended to be healthy eaters by devouring this berry salad. Just kidding. We both love fruit. We just eat a lot of other desserts too to balance it out. ;-) 

See? Carrot cake muffins stuffed with cream cheese. SO good. I'll share the recipe for these soon as well. 

I was trying to take a selfie with Smudge in our backyard last week... and somehow, this is the best we could get. He just wouldn't look at the camera and instead wanted to block my face. Maybe he was sparing you guys. 

On a random Monday night, we decided we had a hankering for something sweet (go figure, right?), so we went to our backyard fire pit and made s'mores. So worth it! And we had a great time sitting out there in the dark talking. 

How has May been for you?
Do you have one month that always seems busier than others?

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