Amelia Grace

It’s been a little over a month since my last post. And in just a few days I’ll have a baby girl that is one month old. Hard to believe is an understatement. People always say the time goes so quickly when you have children, boy is that ever true. It seems like both yesterday and a lifetime ago that I was making lactation cookies and wondering if I’d be pregnant forever.

Fresh 48-©Cassie Clayshulte Photography - Rivers-1

As my OB told me many times, no one is pregnant forever. Amelia Grace came right on her due date, my friends laughed that she was so punctual, unlike her mother who habitually runs a few minutes (or more than a few) late. I won’t bore you with a birth story but we arrived at the hospital around 8:30 and at 8:03 that evening, there was our baby girl.

Fresh 48-©Cassie Clayshulte Photography - Rivers-2

She is pretty perfect, although I am definitely biased.

Fresh 48-©Cassie Clayshulte Photography - Rivers-3

And if you asked me that during one of her inconsolable, rough periods (luckily we only have about one of these a day) I might change my tune just slightly.

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Waiting…& Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Lactation Cookies

In case you can’t tell from the title of this post…. no baby yet 😦 We are now only 3 days out from our due date and not much seems to have changed, although according to my doctor things are still moving in the right direction, so at least there’s that! I’ve cleaned all I can clean, run all the errands there are to run, done all the laundry there is to do and the nursery is completely finished. Nesting is officially complete so now we wait…and wait…and wait.


If our girl doesn’t arrive before her due date we are going to discuss inducing (induction?). My OB doesn’t like for you to go more than a week over your due date, and although I was initially very reluctant, I am becoming more open to the idea of being induced. I am not terribly uncomfortable physically but emotionally the anticipation and waiting has taken a toll and I am ready for a change. Above all else I am thankful for a still healthy and growing baby girl and that is the most important thing!

Wet and Dry

One thing that made the waiting slightly harder (but also so very exciting!) is that my good friend Lindsay who was due a few weeks after me had her baby boy a few weeks early on Tuesday! He is absolutely darling and they are both happy and healthy despite his early arrival. Seeing her little one definitely made me more ready for the arrival of our own, and I think finally made it more real for Robert! I’m still not sure he quite knows what he’s in for (um do I even know? Probably not) but I think he’s going to be great in the moment!

Chocolate Chips

When my friends give birth or are going through a major life event I am a big believer that the most helpful thing you can do is bring a meal. Bring a meal, then leave, to be precise. Not bring a meal and stay to share it or bring a meal and stay to be entertained for a few hours. I imagine that new parents have quite enough going on and often family around to entertain so I like to drop something hot off, hold the sweet babe for a minute if they so wish and then merrily be on my way. It’s been a tried and true formula that most people seem to appreciate so I highly recommend it.


I have a few go to recipes for times like these; Chicken and vegetable casserole, Sausage and Tortellini Soup (Can be prepared Gluten Free if need be!) and most recently Chicken and Poppyseed Casserole. None of these recipes qualify as health food but all are delicious and comforting which is exactly what you want during a time like that. I typically add a bagged salad to the casseroles to be made at their convenience, or a loaf of fresh bread to the soup and in the case of new mamas, I always bring lactation cookies. Continue reading

Post Holiday Update! A Christmas Card Craft and a Detox Side Dish: Roasted Winter Salad

Happy New Year! Well technically happy January 4th but close enough! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. Ours was fabulous, full of family and joy and FOOD. My parents and sister came to town to spend Christmas with us and having them here along with Robert’s whole family was really a special treat!

They got to experience some of the fun Christmas traditions we do with Robert’s family like his mom’s fun Christmas Eve Birthday Lunch where everyone wears Santa hats.

And the most beautiful Christmas day dinner hosted by our Aunt Vanessa.

V's Table

Her place settings included a special ornament for everyone which was so creative and thoughtful!

After being told at my 36 week Dr’s appointment the Friday before Christmas that I was already 2 cm dilated and 70% effaced and that they wouldn’t be surprised if the baby came within the week…we are still waiting and not much appears to have changed :/

On the bright side, it did cause us to hurry up and get all of our baby gear assembled and hospital bags (half way) packed. So we are “ready”, and now we wait…and wait…and wait. Luckily I have found plenty of ‘nesting’ activities to keep me busy. Besides the usual laundering and cleaning, I put all of our Christmas decor away and completed an easy Christmas card craft!

Card Tree
My card tree

I LOVE getting Christmas cards from family and friends, especially photo cards! I also hate the thought of tossing them out post holiday, it seems like such a waste! So a few years ago I came up with this idea to save my cards…just in case I ever get extra nostalgic and want to flip through them all (which I do every year!).

All you need for this craft is a hole punch and a set of loose leaf rings. I bought mine in a pack from Michaels but I’m sure you can find them at Staples or on Amazon.


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A Winter Wonderland Shower <3 & Homemade Pumpkin Gnocchi!

Merry almost Christmas! Wow, the holidays seem to come quicker every year and with the baby due so close to the new year this Christmas has really snuck up on me! We’ve officially got less than 4 weeks til baby and I am not so sure I feel prepared yet. I have yet to pack a hospital bag or get the carseat out of the box but thanks to two fabulous baby showers, we have got a beautiful (almost done!) nursery and plenty of baby gear!

My sister threw me a darling baby shower in TN over Thanksgiving and just a few weeks later I was lucky enough to be treated to a second shower at home in HHI by my sweet Aunt Vanessa. The theme was Winter Wonderland and it could not have been more beautiful.

I aspire to entertain as well as Vanessa does someday as she truly outdoes herself with each event! The food was to die for, a beautiful brunch spread complete with a low country shrimp and grits station and egg cups with caviar!

The decor was beautiful and the little details, like this sweet Christmas tree and the elephants tucked away everywhere were absolutely precious!


I knew with Vanessa at the helm that the shower would be wonderful, but it truly couldn’t have been more perfect.

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A Thanksgiving Shower and Homemade Pumpkin Puree

Happy bi-week! I think that’s a football term for an off-week which is pretty much what this week is right? The week between Thanksgiving and December. AKA time to shop til you drop, get all of your Christmas decorations up and get so sick of leftover turkey sandwiches that you vow not to eat it again for another year, or at least until Christmas.

For once my family avoided turkey overload and didn’t eat a single leftover. Why you may ask?


This guy….

My parents and sister both own small dogs and therefore aren’t accustomed to “counter surfing”. Unfortunately for Renly, his efforts proved to be for naught and he didn’t actually consume any leftover turkey either.

Robert, Renly and I traveled to Tennessee for Thanksgiving this year. My grandparents were also attending and it was our last trip before baby (hallelujah because riding in the car for long periods of time is getting less comfortable for me by the day). After we ate our Thanksgiving meal at my parents house we went over to a friends home to visit and have dessert. Upon returning we discovered that my mother had inadvertently left the lid off of the tupper-wear container she had put the leftover turkey in. She also left it sitting too close to the edge of the counter. The tupper-wear container was now flipped over onto the ground and pushed into the corner of the cabinets. I didn’t take a picture at the time but it looked something like this…

Turkey Tupperware

My theory is that Renly, at the urging of the little dogs no doubt, flipped the open container onto the floor with his head and it landed perfectly upside down, with all of the turkey still trapped inside. They then probably all took turns pushing it around the floor, trying to get to the meat inside until they pushed it into the corner and it became stuck.

Turkey that has been used to sweep the kitchen floor isn’t high on my list of things I’m willing to consume so thus, no leftover turkey for any of us…or the dogs, although it is likely that my father the notorious dog feeder snuck them some without my knowledge.

The rest of our Thanksgiving was lovely; we did lots of relaxing, watched a few movies, I got all of my Christmas shopping done (hooray), spent wonderful time with family and friends

and to cap it all off my sister threw me an adorable baby shower!


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