Since my husband wasn't around to cook for me, I threw together a salad of mixed greens, cucumber, carrots, tomatoes, avocado, liver, and sauerkraut topped with homemade sriracha-honey dressing

{WIAW #4} Fuel Your Nesting (or Deep-Cleaning)

What’s the saying? ‘Sometimes the best-laid plans fail’? Well, friends, that’s what happened to me concerning my entire yesterday, in general, and, specifically, this post. I’d planned to kick-off my newest series–> Busting Pregnancy Exercise Myths <– today, but …my hormones had a different idea.

That hallmark of late-pregnancy, NESTING, kicked in and violently shoved blogging to the back of my mind (and agenda).

It all started innocently enough with a text Monday night from a friend. A mother of four girls, she informed me that all of her baby clothing from the (always-fashionable) youngest would be up for grabs this weekend at their garage sale. Would I be interested in getting first dibs by coming over Tuesday morning to take a look? Heck yes! I’m so happy I did, because I bought all of this for $20!

photo 2 (58) photo 3 (51)

  • 7 Outfits
  • 2 Sleeping Gowns
  • 3 Pairs of Pants
  • 4 Handmade Bibs
  • 2 Knit Hats
  • 6 Onesies
  • 1 Winter Carseat Cover/Blanket
  • The most adorable Bumble-Bee Halloween Costume

After bringing Baby Girl’s ‘new’ swag home and laying every item out to snap a pic for Nathan, an unexplainable urge struck me like lightning. I felt exactly like this woman…

clean all the things

A strange sensation for me, considering cleaning’s not exactly my favorite past-time. Sure, I clean our house fairly regularly (thanks, in large part, to our hosting a small group each week), and it looks tidy when company visits, but that, by no stretch of the imagination, means I look forward to it or follow one of the million cleaning schedules I’ve pinned. Who’s with me? ;)

So it was pretty obvious to me that, with just 6 weeks to go before Baby Girl arrives, this was true ‘nesting’ and not simply a strong desire for a tidy house. Plus, the following tipped me off…

  1. I started at the back of the house, in the room closest to the nursery (‘they’ say nesting’s all about creating a welcoming space for baby). My typical cleaning-spree starts in the rooms closest to the front door, where we do the bulk of our living (kitchen, family room, bathroom).
  2. I conquered my husband’s ridiculously-cluttered nightstand. Receipts, pens, work papers, business cards, and more lay strewn on his table for months. Occasionally, I’d remove them to dust but, not knowing what he needed, I didn’t dare attempt to organize it. For now, those things are awaiting his return home, just tucked away so I don’t have to see the clutter. photo (4)
  3. I vacuumed every corner and all the baseboards of every room I swept

    One of the rooms I tackled
    So nice to have a clean, dust-free bedroom. If only we’d have time before Baby comes to repaint and decorate it like we’d planned… oh well!

As I meandered moved energetically from room to room dusting, sweeping, throwing things away, vacuuming, and more, I realized a few factors, particularly in the nutrition department, enabled me to stay motivated and keep going, despite my third-trimester tendency toward fatigue. And you don’t have to be nesting to capitalize on these. Same goes for the days you deep-clean, spring-clean, or just find yourself bit with the cleaning bug. Lucky you!

Oh yeah, and I’m linking up with Jenn for WIAW, sharing exactly how I fueled my first nesting day.

5 Tactics to Fuel Your Nesting 

1. Start the day rested. Monday night, I racked up a full 8 hours of, for being 34-weeks pregnant, pretty restful sleep. I consider sleep one of the nourishing ‘primary foods‘ I learned about in my studies to become a health coach. Thinking out-load for a moment: I really should write a separate post on primary food. 

2. Do at least one thing to energize yourself that morning.

  • Work out or take a brisk walk outside
  • Eat a hearty breakfast

    photo 1 (60)
    Started out my morning with soaked eggy oats with butter, strawberries, and a touch of brown sugar mixed in… all accompanied by my 1/3-caf coffee
  • Sip on a little caffeine
  • Pray for focus, motivation, and endurance to conquer the cleaning tasks ahead

3. Jam as many nutrients into your meals as possible to provide staying power & energy

  • With my hearty, nutrient-packed breakfast, I didn’t have to stop mid-morning to refuel.
  • Having a balanced meal with fats, carbohydrate, and protein enables us to stay full longer than any of those eaten in isolation. Think eating an apple vs. eating an apple with peanut butter… besides, nut butter makes everything better :)

    Hodgepodge 'veggie bowl' of leftover steamed beets and green beans, salmon, sauteed onions and beet greens, bacon, and avocado
    Lunch: A hodgepodge ‘veggie bowl’ of leftover steamed beets and green beans, salmon, sauteed onions & beet greens, bacon, and avocado (plus a little homemade mayo to bring it all together)

4. Have easy-to-grab food and quick-fix meals on-hand

Blueberry-infused kombucha... legit!
Blueberry-infused kombucha… legit!

5. If you have one, arrange for you significant other to be out-of-town or busy that night. I say this cheekily (and because Nathan happened to be gone yesterday), but honestly, keep anything that will stop your cleaning flow, like making dinner (or an impromptu run to Costco, oops!), to a minimum.

Snack #2: Costco samples - pretzel/cracker/chip thingies & an unphotographed quesadilla wedge
Snack #2: Costco samples – pretzel/cracker/chip thingies & an unphotographed quesadilla wedge

If you’re anything like me, getting started a second time’s much more challenging. Husbands, however, come in quite handy for making said dinner, especially (I’d imagine) if you have kids. So if he’s home, put your guy on meal duty next time you find yourself in a cleaning rhythm.

Since my husband wasn't around to cook for me, I threw together a salad of mixed greens, cucumber, carrots, tomatoes, avocado, liver, and sauerkraut topped with homemade sriracha-honey dressing
Dinner: Since my husband wasn’t around to cook for me, I threw together a salad of mixed greens, a few goodies from our CSA (cucumber, carrots, broccoli, & tomatoes), avocado, liver, and sauerkraut topped with homemade sriracha-honey dressing.
photo 2 (61)
Toasted soaked biscuit with butter and blackberry jam


So there you have it… I’m officially NESTING. Literally, I’ve been waiting for this day since pregnancy started, so pray for me that the motivation and enthusiasm stick around.

Night snack: the usual
Night snack: the usual


In case you missed it –> Monday’s post features my first-ever GIVEAWAY! Hop over there to enter before it’s too late :)

If you’ve been pregnant before, which signs indicated you were nesting? 
How do you stay energized and motivated on deep-cleaning days?
Sauerkraut – yay or nay?

Fit Friday: A 4th-of-July Workout + This Week’s Fitness Recap

Happy Independence Day, USA friends!

And since Sunday’s the day, shout out to my baby sister, Whitney. I hope you have a fabulous birthday!

In light of the 3-day & holiday weekend, I’m keeping things short and sweet today.

First up, here’s a quick, travel-friendly, and best of all, 4th-themed workout to bust out before the celebrations start today.

Screen shot 2014-07-01 at 9.16.15 AM


And secondly, here’s the rundown on my workouts this past week…

Friday Fitness Recap



Strength: EMOM 12 – Odd: 5 Hang Power Cleans + Front Squat; Even – 5 Push Jerks

MommyWOD: Burping Baby Grace – see what I did there? ;)

  • 30 Hang Power Clean & Jerks (break this down into manageable sets, resting as needed) – 45#
  • 30 Burpees (pace yourself, resting as needed) – modified using low step



Strength: 5×5 Front Squats

MommyWOD – Complete 6 rounds of the following:

  • 8 Thrusters
  • 80 Single-unders
  • Rest, as needed



Walked the 3.7-mile loop around Creve Coeur Lake. So much beauty in one walk…

photo 1 (53) photo 2 (51) photo 3 (45)



Strength: 4×4 Overhead Press (weight lifted: 55#, 60#, 60#, 65#)

Superset #1 – 3 Rounds:

  • 10 Push Press – 55#
  • 10 Barbell Rows – 75#

Superset #2 – 3 Rounds:

  • 8-10 Push-up + Side Plank
  • 10 Inverted Rows

Superset #3 – 3 Rounds:

  • 10 Incline Bench Press – 55#
  • 10 Lat Pull-downs – 70#

*Rest before moving on to each new superset


Friday – 4th of July Workout 


Have so much fun this weekend!!

Just one question today: How are you celebrating the 4th this year? Shenanigans in Indy with a few friends from college 



photo 2 (49)

32-Week Bumpdate

Woo hoo! As of this morning, this mama-to-be’s 33 weeks pregnant. What?! In a matter of 7 short weeks (or even less, but keep cooking, Baby Girl), I could be holding our little one in my arms. That’s incredibly exciting, crazy, and, to be honest, slightly terrifying, all at the same time.

We don’t have nearly all the items on our pre-baby to-do list checked off. But, at my shower, my older, list-loving sister suggested ripping that thing up. While it’s kept me organized and on-task, this summer’s been busy, keeping us from all the work we’d envisioned tackling. I’ve decided we’ll get to what we can before she arrives and let the rest fall into place. I want to enjoy my last month-and-a-half of pregnancy (as much as you can actually do such a thing), not be stressed-out.

One thing we are definitely keeping up with is baby appointments. Now that we’re visiting the doc every two weeks, typically on Monday mornings, I opted to move our ‘bumpdates’ to Wednesdays. That way I can share all the details from those.

This week, Nathan scheduled his post-triathlon chiropractor appointment before our baby checkup. We passed the time in between with a little morning Starbucks date. photo 1 (50)Got to get those coffee dates in while we still so easily can :)

So what did we find out at my appointment? Let’s just dive into the bumpdate, where I’ll give you the full rundown :)

Update on Baby J

Due Date: August 20th

Movement: She’s kicking a lot more directly underneath my breast bone and diaphragm. Thankfully, direct contact between her punching and my ribs has yet to be made. I’m 100% okay if it stays that way.

pineappleGrowth: No wonder pineapple sounds so good lately; apparently, there’s one growing inside me. Not true, but that’s about Baby Girl’s size this week. Estimated, she’s roughly 18 inches long and weighs close to 4 pounds. Apparently, that weight could almost double before she arrives.

Heart Rate: 143 BPM

Milestones: In addition to packing on the weight, little one’s practicing for all the movements she’ll perform after making her big debut. Shocker, considering how much my bump moves ;) But it’s not just kicking; she’s testing out her ability to swallow, suck her thumb, and more.


Mama J

The Bump: I feel as if there’s a little Dory inside me that chants ‘just keep growing, just keep growing’ every. single. day. When I woke up Sunday morning, Nathan commented that my bump grew bigger overnight. Little one’s doing what she’s supposed to at this stage – grow, a lot.

photo 2 (49)

The doc confirmed my continual expansion with the fundal-height measurement. According to him, I’m measuring right on schedule. That’s a huge relief, since up until a few weeks ago, everyone kept commenting on how small I appeared.

Exercise: Not much has changed in the exercise department over the past two weeks. I’m taking early-morning walks more frequently, as a means to enjoy the outdoors before the temps sore to 95+ 1 (52)

As I shared on Friday, there’s a few exercises I’ve had to part ways with. Thank the Lord for exercise substitutions, which enable me to still be going strong in the gym. I do get winded and tired more easily, so I’m accommodating for that with longer and/or more-frequent rests as I go through a workout.

Pre- and post-exercise bump selfies
Pre- and post-exercise bump selfies. She always looks bigger on my left side :)


Weight Gain: +15 pounds. Not much of an increase since our last appointment (I choose not to weigh myself between). But, as I shared above, she’s definitely growing, and my fundal height’s on-track. Plus, Dr. F, reviewing my vitals, commented with ‘I love your weight gain’, so I’m not going to worry about it.

Aversions None to report. I love food :)

Cravings - I’m really enjoying all-things grilled but can’t say I’ve had specific ‘cravings’ for any such foods. I think the fact that it’s summer plays a big role in that. Who wants to turn on the oven when it’s hot out? Plus, Nathan mans the grill, meaning I get a break :)

photo (51)

Speaking of summer and heat… I put ice in all my beverages these days (iced decaf americanos, iced kombucha, iced water, and more). Usually, I’m the weirdo that asks for ‘water, no ice, please’ when we go out. I do require more hydration these days, which likely explains it.

P.S. I’ve got a feeling it’s almost time to bust out the brown sugar-cinnamon poptarts ;)

Pregnancy Symptoms:

  • Gas… always
  • Growing tired more-easily
  • Aching feet after standing and/or walking a while
  • Constipation… that dreaded symptom’s made an evil comeback
  • Occasional Bump itchiness
  • Heartburn
  • Braxton-Hicks Contractions.
  • Round Ligament Pain. Both Nathan and my doula (a close friend & sister-from-another-mother) were out of the country last week. After going to the bathroom (TMI?), I felt this sharp, cramp-like pain in my lower-left abdomen. For a brief moment, I thought I might be going into labor and experienced a mini-freakout. What would I do without one of those two here?!? I used this opportunity to practice my Bradley relaxation and breathed through it. Turns out, just another manifestation of the RL pain getting my body ready.
  • Fatigue

What I’m Missing: Speaking of fatigue, I’ve started to long for some caffeine in my life. A former coffee-addict, I’ve done really well avoiding the caffeinated stuff the past 7 months. Having major aversions to coffee all of first trimester helped :) But now that some pregnancy fatigue’s returned, I’ve started brewing 1/4-caf coffee on those super-tired mornings.

What I’m Loving:

  • Watching Baby Girl move from the outside
  • When Nathan lays his head on my stomach, he can hear her heart beat. So neat!
  • We (okay, Nathan) started painting the nursery!!
Priming the walls... Turns out, painting wood paneling takes a looonnnggg time
Priming the walls… Turns out, painting wood paneling takes a looonnnggg time


What I’m looking forward to: Spending the 4th in Indy with our college friends. The next time we see them after that, we’ll be parents. Whoa!


Ice in your drinks – yay or nay? 
To-do lists – Helpful or stressful?
Favorite grilled food? Grilled Corn. I can’t wait to see that in our CSA box.





Transitioning from bike to run. There's that smile I love.

{MIMM #1} First Baby Shower + Daddy J’s Triathlon

Happy Monday, friends! I hope everyone had a good weekend. Our’s proved busy, but because of fun activities like multiple grilling sessions with friends and Nathan’s triathlon, which I’ll get to soon.

Today, I’m linking up with Katie for my first-ever Marvelous in My Monday post.


My Monday’s off to a truly marvelous start for a couple reasons.

  1. We have our 32-week appointment this morning. Baby Girl seems to be growing like a weed, so I’m looking forward to finding out how she’s measuring and, as always, hearing her heartbeat.
  2. I put these little guys in the mail this morning.

photo (49)

Thank-you cards and I have a rocky relationship. No lie, over 6 months passed before I sent out the ones from our wedding. Knowing Baby Girl will consume 99.999% of my attention once she arrives, I’m getting a jump on these now. If not, she might be 6 (years old) before they get sent.

Speaking of thank-you cards, my sister’s threw a sweet shower for us last weekend. With all the post-vacation sharing this past week (Niagara & the Adirondacks), I’m just now able to give you the rundown.

photo (50)

We ate. In my family, shower food’s kept simple with cake, punch, nuts, and mints. At the past few baby showers, trail mix replaces the nuts; this because of a fun little inside joke from my older sister’s first pregnancy.

photo 5 (24)

We played a few games

  • Gift Bingo
  • Guesstimate How Big Jaclyn’s Belly Is

    photo 2 (45)
    Chris won!
  • The Attribute Game. This proved my favorite of the day. Whitney, my younger sister, listed 15 attributes (eyes, hair, etc.), and each person had to guess whose, Nathan’s or mine, I hope Baby Girl gets. For fun, here’s my responses:
    • Eyes – mine
    • Ears – mine
    • Nose – Nathan
    • Legs – mine. Obviously I hope she gets feminine-looking limbs :)
    • Hair – Nathan
    • Smile. At the time, I said mine, but after looking back at pictures I took of him this weekend, mid-triathlon, I hope she gets his. In the midst of all that effort and pain, his smile still looked good ;)
    • Intelligence – Nathan
    • Humor – mine, because Nathan’s already been practicing his dad jokes. You know the ones.
    • Feet – mine.
    • Toes – mine.
    • Cheeks – mine. I’m 1/16th Native American and really hoping she inherits my higher cheek bones.
    • Chin – Nathan
    • Skin Tone – Nathan
    • Athleticism – mine. Ha, that attribute’s a laugh, which is why Whitney included it in the list. While Nathan thought I was athletic upon first meeting me, let’s just say I unknowingly tricked him. Yes, I enjoy exercise and being active, but there’s a large gap between working out and being considered ‘athletic’. However, he’s not Mr. Athlete either, so Baby Girl doesn’t have much hope. My rationale for choosing mine? Her aunt and uncle, my siblings, played college sports. Maybe she’ll inherit some of that.
    • Confidence – mine

I opened presents (with spectacular help from my niece, of course)

photo 1 (46)

And received a wealth of motherly wisdom & insight

photo 3 (40)
My mama (holding her newest grandbaby) passing on her best advice


I’m beyond grateful that my sister’s invested time and effort to throw this shower for Baby Girl and me. They’re two pretty awesome (and hilarious) people, so you know it was a fun afternoon.

That happened last weekend. This weekend was all about Nathan’s triathlon. I know I said he wasn’t Mr. Athlete, but I really should bite my tongue. Exercising for 3+ hours straight, in multiple modalities, requires immense endurance, coordination, and mental fortitude. And that’s just during the actual competition; not to mention the months of training leading up to the big event. Here’s (more than) a few pics from the day…

Up bright & early
Up bright & early


Beautiful lake morning
Beautiful lake morning



Contemplating the swim
Contemplating the swim


Ready to get this show on the road
Ready to get this show on the road


And they're off... While I'm a nervous wreck waiting for him to come out of the water
And they’re off… While I’m a nervous wreck waiting for him to come out of the water


He made it
He made it



Taking off on the (hilly) bike course
Taking off on the (hilly) bike course


Transitioning from bike to run. There's that smile I love.
Transitioning from bike to run. There’s that smile I mentioned.



Happy as he leaves on the run course
Happy as he leaves on the run course…


Doggedly finishing the last quarter-mile of the race (okay, walk up the hill, run down the hill)
… and finishing the last quarter-mile of the run (what turned out to be ‘walk up the hill, run down the hill’)


Crossing the finish line
(Tiredly) crossing the finish line


Let me take a (post-race) selfie
Let me take a (post-race) selfie



Post-race feast-of-choice: GIANT Burrito
Post-race feast-of-choice: GIANT Burrito


My Taco Salad
My Taco Salad


He seriously rocked it! I couldn’t be more proud of my guy.


Highlight of your weekend?
Favorite baby shower game?
Are you good or bad about mailing out thank-yous?
tri flex

Fit Friday: Another {Exercise} Bites the Dust…

Hola! Who’s ready for the weekend?

I am, but not because this past week’s been awful or overly-taxing or some morbid thing like that. No, I’m simply excited for (a bright & early) tomorrow morning, because Nathan’s competing in a triathlon.

tri flex
Triathlon 2013. That’s a whole lotta spandex in one photo.

This’ll be his second since we’ve been married, and I love going, partly to cheer him on, but also for the atmosphere. People cheering for and encouraging absolute strangers, watching 70+ year olds compete, and more. Before attending the race last year, my conception of a triathlete was a thin, muscular, 30-ish-year-old. After seeing all types of people participating, plus a little coaxing from the hubs, I wanted in this summer. Until, well, Baby Girl made her surprise presence known. I’ll bide my time and be content cheering Nathan on this summer. Maybe one day we’ll be a little Tri family :)

For now, I’ll stick to what I know best… resistance training. Unfortunately, with baby growing (a lot, more and more every single day), mama’s ability to perform some of the exercises I did with ease in the past has decreased drastically. At 32 weeks, here’s a rundown of the exercises I’ve had to say ‘bye bye’ to so far. May they rest in peace (until I’m ready to get back in the gym post-baby).

  • Pull-ups
    Won't see this for a while
    Won’t see this for a while

    Last Friday, I planned to do a workout of pull-ups, wall balls, and kettlebell swings. Knowing banded pull-ups, would likely, well, pull on my stomach a little too much, I opted to use the pull-up machine. Turned out to not be a viable substitution. With all the stretching and round-ligament pain already happening in my abdomen, I had to concede that exercise to the abyss of things I’m incapable of doing while pregnant. On the bright side, inverted rows and lat pulldowns feel just fine at this point and, while not perfect substitutes, suffice.

  • Burpees. Big belly with a baby hanging out inside = no full burpees for me. I stopped performing these midway through 2nd trimester when even slowly lowering my upper-body to the ground created discomfort in the belly region. I felt as if I were lying facedown on a beach ball, even though my bump was nowhere near that size. At that point, I began setting a step up 2-3 levels high and performing burpees on that. My belly doesn’t touch the ground, yet I’m still working to bend down low to the ground and perform an almost-full push-up.
  • Box Jumps. I’ve mentioned before my fear of jumping up only to get my foot caught on the box and fall head (and bump) first onto the ground. To keep mom and baby safe, I’ll stick with the box jump’s less-anxiety-enducing little brother, step-ups, for the time being.
  • Bench Press. As we know, lying flat on your back is a no-no after your belly gets to a certain size. When you should stop depends on your level of comfort and how quickly your bump grows. Mine took a (long) while, so I could lie on my back almost all the way through 2nd trimester. Now, though, push-ups and incline bench press work my chest without me needing to lay completely flat on my back.
  • Abdominal Exercises that necessitate lying on your back. That whole not-lying-on-your-back thing? Same concept here, except I stopped doing any such exercises (sit-ups, leg lifts, etc.) around the beginning of 2nd trimester moreso because a friend experienced contractions very early on in her pregnancy from continuing to do them. No lies, hearing that scared me a bit. Plus, what’s the point? I’d bet no one’s kept 6-pack abs while pregnant (not that I had them to begin with), and there’s more-effective ways to maintain core-strength anyways. Think squats, deadlifts, overhead press, and any other exercise that necessitates engaging the core musculature.
  • Knees-to-elbows. Again, hanging from a bar simply creates too much stretching in my belly region at this stage of the game. I’ve switched to performing knee-ups on the tower-like stands at the gym, and that works just fine for now.

At this juncture, that’s all the exercises that have ‘bit the dust’, so to speak. While losing all the ‘progress’ I’ve made over the last couple years honestly sucks a bit, I’m grateful for all the activity I can still do while pregnant. Plus, we’re gaining something a gift so much more meaningful and precious than being able to pull my own body off the ground. Besides, I stopped working out for several months just a couple years ago and, when I started back, could no longer perform even one full push-up. Within a matter of weeks, I regained that ability, plus more. A few months devoid of pull-ups and burpees… no big deal. Bouncing back shouldn’t be difficult, especially compared to what I hear having a new baby’s like ;)


Friday Fitness Recap

It’s been a while since I shared a full week of workouts with you. I’ve honestly missed giving you the rundown, especially since I started this blog, in part, to hold myself accountable to exercising throughout pregnancy. I promise I’ve continued to do so (minus that whole rest and relax, vacation bit). So here goes…


Monday – Rest Day. I drove back from Indiana and unloaded all the shower gifts from my car – does that count? ;)


Walked for 30 minutes. I started getting up before 6 most mornings to walk before the temps get too hot. Missouri heat & humidity… not. awesome.

Strength: 3×5 Squats (95#)

MommyWOD- Using a 45# bar, perform 8 rounds of the following:

  • 5 Thrusters
  • 7 Hang Power Cleans
  • 10 SDHP (sumo deadlift high pulls)
  • *Rest for 30-45 seconds (or more, depending on what you need) between rounds

*Modified from Crossfitmom

Wednesday: 30-minute walk around the neighborhood


Strength – Paired EMOM:

  • 5 Push Press (on odd minutes)
  • 5 Barbell Rows (on even minutes)

MommyWOD – Perform 5 rounds of the following:

  • 8 Push-ups
  • 10 Inverted Rows or Lat Pulldowns
  • 12 KB Swings
  • *Rest, as needed


Strength - 5×5 Deadlifts

MommyWOD – Reverse Ladder (10, 9 … 2, 1) of the following:

DB Weighted Box Step-ups (per leg)

BW Jumping Squats



What’s something exciting you have planned for the weekend?
Which exercises (forms of and/or specific movements) have you had to stop doing? What was your experience getting back into it?