Baby Bender: 19 Weeks {It’s a…}

by Jenn (eating bender) on October 30, 2014

For blog

We are feeling blue this week, for all the best reasons. Last Friday, we had our 18-week ultrasound and found out that Baby Bender is healthy, super flexible and most definitely…

Our little BOY!!!!

Baby boy Krenn final-blog

I was so nervous the morning of the appointment, and the waiting room made me even more anxious. Fortunately, our ultrasound technician was really nice and told us what we were looking at as we moved from his hands to his feet to his heart to his kidneys, and beyond. My family was also there for the beginning of the ultrasound, so it was extra special to watch their faces light up as they saw the baby for the first time.

When the time came to learn the sex, we had them leave the room so that we could surprise them later. The technician asked Bobby and me if we had a guess, and we got it right on the first try. There was a hint on screen, so that helped. ;) Bobby told me afterward that he’d had a feeling it was a boy. I was more unsure and leaning toward girl in recent weeks, but as it turns out, my initial instincts – calling the baby “he” and dreaming about a boy – were right! It was amazing to share that moment together and realize that in less than five months, we’ll be meeting our SON.

We had my family open a box that we’d filled with blue candy and a little penguin with blue feet (our other option was a pink monkey). I was absolutely certain my mom had accidentally overheard me say “him” at the end of the appointment. She had turned and given me a funny look when I did, but as it turns out at another point she had thought I said “her,” so she assumed I was trying to cover up that slip instead! It was hilarious, but in the end she was surprised so it worked out!

Spreading the news

We spread the news to more family and friends over the weekend and can’t stop smiling! Here’s a look at some of the other excitement that has been going on lately…

Boy or girl? BOY!

How far along: 19 weeks, 3 days.

Baby is the size of: A mango! He is six inches long and weighs about 10 ounces.

Feeling: Awesome! These last few weeks have been really great. My energy levels are pretty much back to normal (still with the occasional midday nap) and I’m officially hungry all the time.

Total weight gained: Nine pounds.

Exercising: Yes! I started pre-natal yoga a couple of weeks ago and am loving it so far. It’s fun to get some exercise while also preparing my body mentally and physically for labor. Plus, it gives me the chance to interact with other pregnant women (like Nicole, who is the reason I heard about this place!) and hear some of their symptoms, questions and advice. Additionally, I’m doing some workout DVDs with Bobby for arm and leg exercises, and using the elliptical almost every day. I am still walking and running, but haven’t been as much lately with everything else going on.

Sleep: Still going well! I pretty much always wake up at least once now, but no trouble as far as getting to sleep. I can’t get enough of it, so that probably helps.

Showing: Yes! Unless I’m wearing a big t-shirt, there’s pretty much no doubt that there’s a human in there now. I still haven’t been asked by a stranger in public, but definitely think I’m getting some “is she…?” looks. :)

Cravings: I’m really surprised that I haven’t had anything crazy come up yet. I’ve been pretty monotonous in my breakfasts, lunches and snacks. We switch up dinners a little bit but are still sticking to staples. Just give me carbs, cheese and fruit every day and I’m happy.

Aversions: Still not the biggest fan of seafood or red meat right now, although the latter is improving. Just give me all the chicken and I will be a happy camper.

Missing: An occasional glass of wine now and then, but not a big deal. I am also being a little more careful about Halloween candy this year (avoiding food dyes), so I’m missing some of my favorite sugary goodness. But I’ve made up for it by buying this bulk package of pomegranate lollipops. They are amazing. Trust me. I’ve already been through one bag…

Maternity clothes: I wore my new LOFT maternity jeans during my trip to Chicago last weekend (can’t wait to share more about our latest Pinterest party soon!), and I loved them. So comfortable and besides the waistband, they feel and look like my normal jeans. Still wearing my pre-pregnancy shirts but they are reaching their stretching point, so the official switch is coming!

Movement: Another highlight during our Chicago weekend was that I felt my first kick on the outside! Baby boy was squirming like crazy one night (I’m thinking it was because he was enjoying Lou Malnati’s deep dish pizza). I put my hand on my stomach and felt a little poke right below my belly button. Cue squeals of happiness. I’ve been feeling them more and more since then, but we’re still trying to get him to perform for Dad. Hopefully Bobby will be able to feel it soon!

Looking forward to: Starting to put the pieces together on the nursery. We have our theme and some ideas for furniture, but still have to decide on a paint color and other small stuff.

Best moment of this week: Telling friends and family our news. Also, a special moment during the ultrasound last week when Baby Bender was flexing his fingers and raised just his thumb, index finger and pinky. Uncle Eric said, “Hey, he’s doing my Spider-Man move,” which Eric did ALL. THE. TIME. when he was younger. We’ve been calling the baby Spidey ever since. He’s already reached superhero status. He also likes to stretch his legs a lot, as evidenced by the third photo.

Baby Boy Krenn Collage FB - spiderman


It’s crazy to think we’re nearly halfway through this journey. We’ve got one big surprise left: we’ll be keeping Baby Bender’s name a secret until he is born. Can’t wait for that final reveal, as it means he will be in my arms! But for now, I’m soaking up every moment of this mother-son time.

We love you, Spider-Man.




Four Years! {Sedona + Flagstaff Getaway}

by Jenn (eating bender) on October 16, 2014

Today marks four years of married life with my best friend – hurray!


This year, Bobby and I decided to combine an anniversary and babymoon trip into one fall weekend getaway. After our adventures in Sedona toward the end of the season last year, we thought it would be fun to head north even earlier in hopes of catching a glimpse of the leaves as they’re just beginning to change.

Well, turns out we were a few weeks too early in Sedona, but we got our wish in Flagstaff, and the overall beauty of both locations made for a refreshing and relaxing weekend, just the two of us (and, of course, our little navel orange … who is now the size of an onion!).

We hopped in the car on Friday after work, arriving at the Inn On Oak Creek a little before 8:00. I am pretty sure this place has nothing but positive reviews, and after staying there, we can see why. More on that in a second.




(Note: The above pictures were taken the next morning!)

We picked up our keys and got back in the car in order to make our dinner reservation at Javelina Cantina, which turned out to be just down the street. For a little backstory, Bobby and I took our first road trip to the Grand Canyon way back in September 2007 (before I started ye olde blog). On our way home, we drove through Sedona and stopped at a Mexican restaurant, where Bobby ordered his first beer (a Corona), having just turned 21. The food was amazing, but we neglected to remember the name of said restaurant and have been searching for it ever since!

All we have to go on is a picture that was taken of us with the restaurant view of Sedona’s red rocks in the background. We still aren’t sure whether Javelina Cantina was the place because as soon as we got there, we realized that it being dark outside made it kind of hard to see that same view … haha. So the mystery restaurant is still a mystery, but in the meantime we enjoyed some delicious Mexican fare.

We started out with chips and salsa, then added some guacamole to the mix.



Bobby ordered a margarita for the occasion. :)


For dinner, we shared the chicken fajitas, which were perfectly seasoned and came with a plethora of veggies and side options. It was a super delicious way to kick off the weekend.



Once our bellies were stuffed, we made our way back to the inn. The downstairs area where they serve breakfast was cute and cozy.


They were packed with guests for the weekend, so we were given two different king rooms on Friday and Saturday night (there are 13 rooms total). Although our rooms did not have the much sought after creekside balconies, they were clean, comfortable and beautifully renovated. The inn used to be a bed and breakfast and still has that vibe even though it has been converted into a hotel. (By the way, they didn’t ask me to say any of this – we just really enjoyed our stay.)



We had mentioned to the manager, Katie, that we were celebrating our anniversary, and were delighted to find a bottle of wine and a nice note when we entered the room. Katie apologized that they didn’t have a non-alcoholic option, but it didn’t matter – the gesture was still very sweet!


The inn continued to amaze us the next morning when we came downstairs for breakfast. They offer continental options such as orange juice, coffee, bagels, and muffins – perfect fuel for a day of hiking. But what really wowed us was the view from their main floor balcony.


Now we know why those creekside balcony rooms are popular! It was incredibly peaceful to sit outside and enjoy the sights and sounds of Sedona while eating. The temperature was also pretty perfect, which didn’t hurt.


After breakfast, we winded our way along the main road in search of none other than the West Fork Trail! This past spring and summer was a rough one for the Oak Creek Canyon area, as the Slide Fire burned more than 21,000 acres. Trails and parks have been closed ever since, but we were fortunate enough to arrive the same week that the West Fork Trail was reopened.

It was just as gorgeous as we remembered – albeit a lot greener this time around.


Although the leaves hadn’t really changed yet, we enjoyed walking along the familiar trail and stepping from stone to stone across the creek. We didn’t venture too far in, but it was a cool and shady walk that got the day started off right.




On the way back into town, we made a pit stop to see if our Sedona vortex was still hanging around near the small waterfall. And it was! These mini whirlpools are so cool to look at.



We made our way into the heart of town for a quick stop at one of my favorite stores: Earthbound Trading Company. Annnnnnd we ended up finding something that sealed the deal for how we’re going to decorate Baby Bender’s nursery! I’m excited to share more once everything comes together.

Next up: lunch at PJ’s Pub & Grille, where we hoped to catch the Northwestern game!


I decided to eat exactly what I was craving: a cup of chili and a basket of chicken tenders. :) Luckily, the NU vs. Wisconsin game was on, and we were thrilled to see our Cats come away with a victory!



The rest of the afternoon was spent hiking the Broken Arrow trail, which we found for the first time back in March. What can I say? We’re creatures of habit. But how could you not be when you have this view while walking?



Once our shoes were sufficiently coated in red dust, we made our way back to the hotel, checked into our new room and got ready for dinner at Cucina Rustica.


This was a great choice (thanks, TripAdvisor!) if I do say so myself. They knew it was our anniversary and as a result, the host spread fresh rose petals across our table. Our server started by bringing us a warm bread and olive oil basket.


We decided to start with the Caprese salad, made fresh with whole milk mozzarella, vine ripe organic campari tomatoes, organic basil and organic extra virgin olive oil.


For my entrée I chose Chef Lisa’s Luscious Lasagna, a classic lasagna layered with homemade bolognese sauce, Italian sausage, ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan cheeses. So good!


For our anniversary dessert, the waitress brought a complimentary cake. I don’t remember exactly what it was called but it was sweet and spongy with raspberry sauce, whipped cream and chocolate shavings. The perfect end to a tasty meal.


The next morning, we packed up and drove a bit farther north to see the Oak Creek Canyon Vista.


This particular spot also has sentimental value. We snapped a picture here seven years ago and managed to recreate it again in 2014! Mother Nature hasn’t changed much, and I still apparently wear two hair elastics spread out on my wrist, haha. But the biggest difference is the third addition in the second picture. :)


We continued north to Flagstaff, where I hoped we could catch some early signs of fall. I’d seen pictures of Lockett Meadow in Arizona Highways magazine and thought it would be a great idea. Well, turns out, it might have been a better idea if we owned a truck. My failure to read the directions closely led to our definitely-not-an-SUV making a three-mile climb up a mountain just to reach the clearing. (To be fair, you’d think a meadow would be at the base of the mountains, right? Right.) It was a lot like accidentally driving on the Appian Way, except 20 times longer and scarier.

Thankfully, our car made it up in one piece, and we were rewarded with this stunning view of the San Francisco Peaks. Totally worth it, I exclaimed. Yeah I suppose so, Bobby (the driver) said. :)


Although I don’t think we’d attempt the drive again in our car, we were able to relax among the yellow aspen trees. The air was crisp and everything smelled amazing. We left feeling peaceful and ready to rock the drive back down.



To cap off a wonderful weekend of adventures, many of which were revisited favorites, we made our way to Diablo Burger in downtown Flagstaff for lunch, a burger joint we fell in love with nearly three years ago. I started out with a beer – Sioux City root beer, that is.


And I went with the build-your-own burger, topping it with caramelized onions, pepper jack cheese and Diablo’s secret sauce. It really hit the spot and served as the perfect send off.


In many ways, our wedding seems like it was just yesterday. Then I think about all of the incredible things that have happened these past four years, and I realize that it’s been a jam-packed journey so far! I have a feeling year five is going to be the most exciting one yet.

Happy anniversary, Bobby! I love you!




Baby Bender: 15 Weeks

October 1, 2014

I’m excited to share what I’ve been doing to track Baby Bender’s week-by-week progress! I got the idea from combining this post and this post on Pinterest and thought it would be a lot of fun, not just for me and Bobby but also for the little one to be able to look at someday. I […]

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Top 10 Books On My Fall To-Read List

September 23, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! I am ridiculously excited to participate in my first “Top Ten Tuesday.” It probably comes as no surprise that I am a voracious reader of book blogs, and I’ve been wanting to join in on the fun for quite some time (learn more about the weekly meme here). […]

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Feeling Peachy: Baby Bender Details

September 15, 2014

Thank you all so much for the kind words on our big (little) announcement. Being able to share the news has made us feel all the more excited and extremely grateful for the amazing family and friends we are blessed to have in our lives. I feel like there is now so much I want to say! […]

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Hey, Hey Baby

September 9, 2014

“Hey what? Go Wildcats!” We interrupt this period of relative radio silence on the blog to bring you…the reason for said radio silence on the blog! Yep, it’s a good one. I’ve been baking cinnamon buns! Okay, not really.  I did make cinnamon buns a few weeks ago, but this particular bun has been baking for a […]

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The Move From Print to Film: How “Outlander” Stacks Up So Far

August 29, 2014

Source I am so excited to share a guest post with you today on a topic that I am very passionate about at the moment: the Outlander television series! I was initially immersed in Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander novels more than two years ago, and although I still have a few books in the queue before I’m all caught up, Claire Randall’s amazing […]

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A Sizzlin’ Weekend

August 28, 2014

Somehow I blinked and it was almost Labor Day weekend. The inevitable end of summer is upon us, and while it has been a little crazy seeing fall decorations (and Halloween candy?!) on display already, I have to admit that I’m more than ready for my favorite season to arrive. Cooler temperatures (well, sort of), warm drinks […]

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