A week with the Granbellies!


What a fun week we have had! The granbellies came into town and hung out with us all week long. It was a great time had by all but especially by Roman! Just look at the great smile on his face in the picture above and the pictures to follow, pure joy!

First of all, I truly love having my in-laws over. I know I am blessed in this respect. They are just so easy going and willing to do or not do whatever.  My mother-in-law always shares lots of great cooking tips with me and great natural remedies. My father in law loves to just hang out (drink lots of coffee) and watch Roman while taking tons of “selfies” with his little camera that he keeps with him at all times. I just love them.

We had a pretty laid back week of just enjoying each others company by relaxing outside, playing, cooking, and eating. We went shopping at the outlet mall and Roman got a few new summer outfits. (Spoiled by the grandparents!) I tried on some maternity clothes but nothing looks good yet.

Towards the end of the week, we went to this great working farm called Frying Pan Farm park and hung out with some farm animals. This farm was awesome and is located in the suburbs. They have lots of fun activities for little ones including a tractor/wagon ride, a country store, and  a large playground. We were able to see some baby pigs, sheep, and goats. I think Roman’s favorite was the male turkey. We were able to get pretty close to it and it raised its giant set of feathers for us. We will be going back when the weather is even better outside (it was a bit windy this week.) I also enjoyed the fact that they have free admission for everyone! Win!

We also did a little house hunting while they were here, as we are in the middle of convincing them to move near us.  Hoping to get them here in the next few years so that our children can love on them all the time!

Here are some pictures from the week. Enjoy!








Springtime in DC

It has been a busy week and therefore I have not had much time to post very much. Roman got pink eye yesterday, so that has been fun and I have been trying to do some spring cleaning during nap time. I also keep having bouts of nausea in the afternoon which I really thought was over. wah wah . Hopefully it will be soon.

The weather is finally warming up and it has been so fun to be able to open the windows and let the air in. Roman has become obsessed with our back deck and I have just been keeping the door open for him to come in and out. He loves being outside and I can’t complain about that!

At the beginning of the week, we had the pleasure to drive into DC on the most perfect day to see the cherry blossoms. The flowers were at peak bloom and it was a pleasant 75 degrees outside. We went the day after the festival ended so there were not nearly as many people there as when the festival is going on. We made the mistake last year to go on the last weekend of the festival and it was hard to even walk. It was just so packed. So this year we decided we would rather just enjoy the blooms when the masses were gone. Good decision. Here are some pictures from our day trip into the city. Enjoy and if you are ever in DC in early April you have to check out the cherry blossoms along tidal basin!







Easy as Banana Cream Pie

Last Thursday, we celebrated my husband’s birthday and he made his usual request, banana cream pie. The first time he asked for this was when we were still dating and I was very overwhelmed by the request. I didn’t understand why he couldn’t ask for a regular birthday cake like most people. How was I supposed to make this man I love the best pie without ever having made a pie before? It seemed to difficult to try, so I just went to a local store and bought one. It was good but let me tell you this recipe is so much better than the store bought version.

I made this recipe for the first time last year when we moved to Northern Virginia. I did not know where I could buy a pie so I had to make one! Oh no! It turned out so well that I made it again this year and oh my goodness, it makes me want to make it for my birthday too!

This is the simplest and quickest pie to make and so so good!



  • 1 -9 inch graham cracker pie crust
  • 1- 3.5 ounce package instant vanilla pudding
  • 1- 3.5 ounce package instant banana cream pudding
  • 2-3 bananas
  • 3 tbs. lemon juice
  • 2 1/2 cups cold whole milk
  • 2 cups frozen whipped topping (thawed)



  1. Slice 1-2 bananas, dip them in lemon juice, and line the bottom of the pie crust. ( The lemon juice helps prevent browning and will not give the pie a lemon flavor)
  2. Pour cold milk into a medium bowl. Add pudding mix and whisk until thoroughly combined. Fold in 1/2 cup of the whipped topping. Pour into pastry shell.
  3. Chill at least 3 hours before serving. Garnish with remaining whipped topping and slices of the remaining banana. ( I put some whipped topping in a Ziploc bag and cut a corner off and squeezed it out in order to make little dollops around the edge of the pie.)
  4. Enjoy!




First Trimester Recap with baby #2!

Finally, I’m in my second trimester! Well, officially this Friday I will be 14 weeks! But I have been feeling so much better this week that I am stating I am in my second trimester which is supposed to be the best. It was the last time. One usually is over the morning sickness and the belly isn’t big enough to be in the way or make you waddle.

DUE DATE: Official due date is October 9! It makes me 13 weeks 5 days with 26 plus more weeks to go!! Seems like a long time but I know it will be here before I know it!

SIZE OF BABY: According to several apps I have on my phone, Baby is about the size of a Peach or around 3 inches! I say that is pretty big!

BABY BUMP: I keep thinking that my belly is going to get bigger quicker this time round. But so far, a very small bump is present. Depending on the time of day I can sort of make it look like there is more. It looks more like bloat or a beer belly. This picture was taken right after dinner.


TOTAL WEIGHT GAIN: This is not something I am proud of  but I actually lost 4 pounds in the first trimester. I did not eat very much due to feeling nauseous pretty much all day. But my appetite is definitely back! Baby is hungry!

MAIN SYMPTOMS: This is where my pregnancies have been so different. I had it really easy the first time. I felt great as long as I kept food in my belly. This time, morning sickness plagued me all day and mostly in the evening. I never actually vomited but felt so terrible that a part of me wish I could have in order to get some relief. I parked myself near the bathroom door all day while Roman walked and played around me. It was rough. I also was getting migraines in the evening, which is terrible because you cant really take anything! I would go sit it bed around 8 pm and start sniffing my peppermint essential oil and it would help. Speaking of my bed, lots of sleep has been a major key to functioning daily.

Exhaustion has been so much worse this time too! It may just be that I have toddler to keep up with this time! I found myself laying down anywhere and anytime I could. Forced some naptimes in my bed with Roman so that I could catch a few zzz’s too.DSC_0560

MEDICATIONS: Due to low progesterone levels at 6 weeks into my pregnancy, my doctor put me on progesterone hormone. I took it right before bed and I am so glad that I am done with it! It makes symptoms intensify and that is possibly why I feel so much better now that I am off of it! I also was taking a combination of Unisom and Vitamin B6 to help combat the nausea. Not sure if it really helped. I took it right before bed as well.  I also have to continue to take extra Folic Acid throughout my pregnancy. I have a few blood clotting factors that are at cause for that. (I have never had a blood clot though). And of course I also take a prenatal vitamin, daily. I take it at night because prenatals have always made my stomach uneasy.

FOOD CRAVINGS/AVERSIONS: As mentioned previously, I could barely eat. Most food sounded terrible and then I would smell something or simply lay eyes on something and run to the toilet. (nothing would come up). The biggest aversion was meat of all kinds. It was kind of convenient for Fridays during lent but Papa belly didn’t appreciate the lack of meat in the house for a few weeks. I would make vegetarian dishes and tell him he can add meat if he wanted but he would have to cook it. lol!

CRAZIEST MOMENT: A stomach bug landed both myself an Roman in the Emergency room in my 11th week. I needed an IV to replenish the loss of fluid and they just gave Roman some Zofran to stop the vomiting! It was not fun but on the bright side I got to have another ultrasound and hear the baby’s heartbeat again!


BEST MOMENT: I always love going to my doctors appointments and hearing the heartbeat! I was really nervous at my 9 week ultrasound appointment but it was amazing to see that little tiny baby on the screen! My mom, hubby, and Roman all were there so that made it more special. It did not look like a blob to me this time round, you could clearly see his/her big head, small body, and adorable stubby arms! A definite human life! A miracle!


My next doctor’s appointment is in two weeks! I will get all my blood test results back from last week. It was just routine tests, we did not opt to do any genetic testing. So I am most looking forward to our 20 week ultrasound for the Gender reveal! Just 6 more weeks! Yes, we are finding out the gender. I am a planner, need to know!

Keep you posted!

In Christ,

Mama belly- Lili






Easter Weekend Update

Another Easter Weekend has come and gone but this one seemed extra special with a toddler walking around and the ability to get in on the fun holiday activities. Last year, he was still so tiny that he had no clue what was going on. We were actually able to go to a nice restaurant with him last year because he was still so sleepy. Which as most parents with small children know, eating in a restaurant is quite the treat. Public outings with a tantrum throwing toddler are much rarer now. More on that later.

Check out this fun size comparison from his first Easter and this year. Look at that squishy face!




We were invited to go to Stations of the Cross with some friends in Chantilly. It was so fun meeting up with other Catholic parents and their small kiddos. Stations of the Cross is one of my favorite new Easter activities as a fairly new catholic. It is so humbling and it truly celebrates what Easter is all about. Jesus, the ultimate sacrifice! It makes me cry every time. To think about how much he suffered for us all, us sinners, so that we may one day be with Him in heaven. I mean I know this is not any new thought but it really does just humble me and make me want to be a better person. Strive for sainthood. I pray it does you too!

Here is a photo of us after the service. IMG_9818



We had our first Egg Hunt with Roman this year at Rippon Lodge. Well calling it an egg hunt may be a bit overrated. There was a designated field for children 2 and under with a bunch of empty plastic eggs for them to pick up. But he loved it and that’s all that matters. He understood what he was supposed to do. It was a joy just watching him try to hold the giant basket and pick up eggs at the same time. He got a little obsessive over a few and would not put them down. He also just loved exploring the grounds. I was chasing him all over while papa belly was making new friends. Of course 😉



So I told you I was going to tell you more about Roman’s tantrums and this mornings Mass was a bit of a disaster for us. We arrived too late to grab a seat because Easter is one of those holidays that everyone actually decides to show up. So we end up standing in the back of the church until Roman is screaming at us which is around the Second Reading. Papa takes him out and I am left there with all our stuff. I am standing there leaning on the wall until whoah….I am blacking out and crouching on the floor.

When I manage enough strength to stand back up, I grab our stuff and walk out to the Narthex to be with the boys. But of course I am a little shaken up from my dizzy spell and the nicest usher finds me a foldable seat and glass of water. Although I do not look pregnant at all I am explaining to him that I am and he looks at me and says “Oh I know honey, I have seen it a thousand times”. Ha! Of course, I am in a Catholic church! Got to love the big families and of course there are already three other pregnant women standing near me at that moment with their much more well behaved toddlers!

Roman is continuing to scream if we try to pick him up. So we let him run around which we know is ultimately not a good idea. We are rewarding bad behavior. But when you are feeling sick, the cry room is full, and the church has no open seats, you do what you got to do!  Maybe next week will be better. Praying! If anyone has any advice to keep a wild banshee quiet during Mass that would be much appreciated!

Here are a few pictures of him after church, check out those facial expressions!Easter Sunday Collage



Well this year we decided to stay home and make a small Easter feast for the three and a half of us. Here is a little look at the food I prepared.

Easter meal


It was so simple! Ham, potatoes, deviled eggs and roasted Brussels sprouts. I bought an already cooked ham from Wegmans. Yep, totally cheated. The most labor intensive part of the meal was the cheesy potatoes which I prepared on Saturday and refrigerated overnight. And believe me, it was not really that intense but I find it hard to do too much prepping with a very needy child running around the kitchen. And that being said, my deviled eggs were a small FAIL. I sliced them the wrong direction so they were not pretty to look at but they were still yummy. I will blame pregnancy brain on that one.

That pretty much sums up our fun and crazy filled weekend. It sure was eventful and I can only imagine them getting better every year with each new addition to the family and as each child grows and learns more about Easter traditions.

Hope everyone had a blessed one Easter Sunday and remember Easter is more than one day, its a whole season! The tomb is still empty today, He is risen!

In Christ,

Mama Belly- Lili