Instagram-O-Rama: Baby Edition



Summertime Instagram-O-Rama

My last Instagram-o-rama post was on April 17th. If I wait another two months until the next, there’s a good chance it’ll be dominated by baby shower photos and shots of baby toes, lips, and eyelashes. Fair warning.


A family photo for the Fourth of July


And another showing how large our boy is getting.


Since my thesis is on hiatus, I’ve been working a little. Hoping this here six year old Toshiba lasts just a little longer.


Twenty weeks at Dry Tortugas on the left.  Thirty weeks on the right.


Precious, sleepy Geoff


Not a great deal of concern about energy conservation at this point. Seventy-two during the day and sixty-nine at night with all fans on helicopter speed.

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Lovely rainbow beans that have done marvelously. I’ve frozen around twenty quarts.

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First batch of homemade dill pickles.

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Fresh-baked zucchini bread for snacking and freezing. For this batch I used mostly molasses instead of sugar and it was wonderful.

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The garden goodness I experience every day.

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Sweet bird house my dad got me for my birthday that looks like a miniature version of our house.

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I’m 24!

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Every pregnant woman should purchase an exercise ball as soon as she gets a pink plus sign. 

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On my last trip to Chattanooga for a prenatal appointment, I stopped at a rest area and ill-advisedly got a Cherry Coke. Subconsciously, I knew I shouldn’t be drinking it and dropped the entire can all over myself and my car.


Summertime toes that, so far, haven’t become swollen.

Instagram-o-rama springtime edition + others



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Easter Sunday


Seventeen Weeks


Sticky niece and nephew on a sunshiny day


Now that I’m in my second trimester, my midwife recommends that I consume 100 grams of protein per day (protein-rich diets during pregnancy are linked with lower occurences of pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes, and low birth weight). That’s a lot of meat and milk, y’all. This was my record a few weeks ago. I’ve since hit 104.

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What would a picture post be without at least one of our Geoff?

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Michael Ryan’s closet is filling up.


Finally, we’re getting our mud hole pond somewhere close to presentable. The hollyhock and hostas I dug from our ditch.

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“Hey Cody. I think there’s a crawfish in the pond.” I poke a stick into a hole in the rocks. “I see whiskers!” Giant catfish darts out from hole. Cody stands in awe of his super-duper wife who found a mystery catfish in his koi pond.

Seriously though. We have no idea how this got in. The only people who might have tossed it in as a joke were just as surprised as we were (and probably wouldn’t have done it anyways for fear that it would eat our expensive koi). The other possibility is that a catfish egg got transplanted via bird back in the fall and grew to enormous proportions over the winter.  Nevertheless, he got relocated to a nearby pond and no koi or goldfish were lost. Any ideas?


Crabapple blossom


This is what my precious husband has been doing every evening this week. Notice the taped-up, blistered hands.


We’ve planted: nine tomato plants, fourteen pepper plants, six mounds of squashes, five rows of beans, five mounds of cucumbers, one row of sunflowers, one row of marigolds (supposedly they dispel pests), and two rows of okra. Another row of okra and five rows of corn and we will be finished with planting for now.

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Heirloom Beefsteak, Early Girl, Better Boy

Sweet Banana, Cayenne, Green Bell, Red Bell


So far, it looks quite neat and very Martha Stewart-ish



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Yesterday, our sweet neighbor brought over her “leftovers,” which was basically Thanksgiving dinner. With peach cobbler.


The McNuggets have moved up to the big pen. Thirty-two remain, with one perpetually injured because of his lack of social skills and so confined to a box on the deck where he has forgotten that he is a chicken. They’re now about nine weeks old and really putting down the feed. The White Leghorns have outgrown all of the assorted heavies and will likely be ready for butchering much sooner.

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Instagram-o-rama the third




Geoff knows his days in our bed are numbered


Rocky preventing reading 


So far, my favorite place in the entire world. Makarios in Birmingham, Alabama. Fatoosh Feta and Hummus with Pita. 


 Us, before marriage. Circa 2008-ish.


Generative Grammar  i6

Wee clothes for the babe and larger ones for me


A silly nephew


Chi-weenie in a sweater


An unusually warm winter night on the deck. Also, the day we told Cody’s family our grand news.  i11

Flowers from a Paris market and Notre Dame’s exterior carvingsphoto (6)

Also tonight. Ten weeks and a tiny bump.  photo (8)

An upside down niece 

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Notre Dame’s insides

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Eight weeks today and already feeling a little thicker in the middle. Not round, not necessarily even pregnant, just a subtle preparation for the expansion soon to come.

No, I do not plan to immediately begin wearing maternity clothes, accidentally making room for premature and unnecessary weight gain as I stuff my face for two; however, I do not want to walk around in jeans bordering on vulgar just because they still half-way zip or stretch-out my entire wardrobe and have nothing to wear after the baby is born.

That being said, I foresee a need for flowy tops and cute dresses within a month or so.

Cody has, I don’t know, twenty-five first cousins, many of whom are around our age and having babies left and right. One sweet cousin sent over a load of her maternity left-overs (she’s due with her third in about a month) for me to pick through tonight.

maternity 1

maternity 2

maternity 3

maternity 4

In total, I picked out seven tops, a pair of jeans, a pair of nice black trousers, a black skirt, another skirt, and seven tops… all for $20.00. Honestly, this should hold me through the summer. What a blessing! Some of the pieces are from Motherhood Maternity. I took a look in one of their stores a couple of weekends ago… I’ve never felt the desire to pay $30.00 for a shirt and I don’t foresee even the worst hormonal befuddlement changing that.

Victoria’s Secret and Video Games

I just checked my Facebook feed and was reminded that the annual Victoria’s Secret fashion show is airing in about an hour. Although it’s not usually a special I’m just dying to see, I briefly considered staying up past my usual 9:00 p.m. to watch it.


Seriously. Why in the world would I want to watch super-skinny Angels strut across the stage to Justin Bieber (Beiber, Beber, Biber, Beaver)?

If there is one tiny, insignificant thing Cody does that really unsettles me, it’s playing video games. Actually, only one video game. Halo 3, Reach, 4. It’s sad that I even know the names. Specifically because I do not like the concept of someone preferring unreality to reality. But, deep down, that’s the exact same reason I’m inclined to watch the Victoria Secret fashion show.

I’m precisely five feet tall. Never, ever, under any circumstances will I ever look remotely similar to a lingerie model. Not only that, but never ever will I ever be involved in an event that is centered around my assets (physical or otherwise); nor will I experience the thrill of wearing exotic garments, donning elaborate make-up, or being doted upon like a fragile piece of artwork.

This is more than modesty. More than the fact that countless twelve-year-old boys will be sneaking into their rooms to do “homework.” More than the fact that millions of young girls will have the same feelings of inadequacy as I would (will?) when watching such a show without the intellectual maturity to understand that the women on the screen, bless their hearts, represent almost impossible aspirations. More than the fact that husbands will watch the show, look at their lovely wives, then sadly sigh in disappointment.

All those things are very important. Even more important than this post. But, the point I would like to make tonight is that, just like Halo 4, the VS Fashion Show aired on primetime on a Tuesday night is yet another tool that’s being used to create a universal discontent with reality. Their skin, hair, size, shape, it’s all an illusion to create a “better” version of the life we really live. Spectacular isn’t always best. Heart-pounding, controller-rumbling, screaming-at-the-Xbox battles shouldn’t be the highlight of my husband’s day any more than imaging a more glamourous and beautiful lifestyle via a tv show, Pinterest, or magazine should be for me.

Don’t get me wrong. A free coupon for a seamless panty will entice me into the Angels’ lair as quickly as any other girl. But, in general, Victoria’s Secret makes me mad. Mad at my body, mad at my closet full of thrift store clothes, mad at my husband for not following me around with his eyes popped out of his head. None of those things are good. None of those things are healthy…

My Fruit of the Looms need folding anyways.

An Un-Hobby Lobby Christmas House

We paid $2393.00 cash for a new metal roof for our house on Wednesday. Although that put a damper on our monthly mortgage goals, it is done and paid for and we shouldn’t have to worry about it again. Ever. Our plan was to wait until next summer but after a few brown stains appeared on my kitchen ceiling, we knew we needed to get a replacement installed soon. I was able to save up the money in six weeks, mostly from my writing work.

That being said, I’ve had neither the time nor the money to go all-out on Christmas decorations this year. I have several bins of stuff that I brought with me when I married or that we received before our wedding. So, I’ve completely resisted the urge to hit up Hobby Lobby for the cutest 40% off ornaments and knickknacks. I prefer a more homey and genuine holiday atmosphere anyways. Welcome to the Winningham holiday home tour!


This plate actually did come from the above blasted Hob Lob, but I’ve had it for several years. I’ve got an abundance of cute mini pinecones in my yard. I brushed them with white paint and glitter for something sparkley to fill my (lidless) apothecary jars.


These little houses were $1 each at the Dollar Tree last year. This year, they’re lining my kitchen window sill with candles. Nice view to wash dishes to.


Kitchen wreath


The house is not the same without a real Christmas tree. This is the first and last year we’re going fake. However, since we are leaving for a ten day trip Christmas night, it will prevent a pine needle explosion while we are gone. We borrowed this one from my mother.


I had several of these little themed tea sets when I was young. I found this one a month or so ago for $0.79 at a thrift store. So sweet. Also, something for my niece to play with when she comes over.


My grandmother has had this ornament for as long as I can remember. She gave it to me a few Christmases ago. Turns out it was the perfect size for a topper on our five foot tree.


Another thrift store find at $1.49.


This is the Christmas display in my bedroom. The wreath was $2.99 and the nativity $0.99 at the thrift store. The twiggy reindeer were hot glued using sticks found in the yard (thanks, Pinterest).


I already had the silver balls and the greenery, berries, and pinecones were scavenged. Cheaper than the pansies that I usually plant in here.


My sweet mother made this wreath for me this year. Very festive and a nice, bold decoration for my front door.

 We’ve still got to put up our outside Christmas lights but, for the most part, our tiny house is all decked out. With carols softly playing and a spicy candle lit, there’s no place I’d rather be this holiday season.

Thrifting for Fall

Want to see a happy lady? Give me twenty bucks and an hour to spend in a thrift store. At this point, I estimate that 80% of my wardrobe is thrifted or hand-me-downs. I love to shop as much as any other girl, but I now go to regular stores primarily for inspiration. Tonight, I was feeling a little stressed (yesterday was my last day at work and Monday is my first official day of self-employment) and needed a little retail therapy. Many of my fall pieces are several years old (you might see some in high school yearbook photos) and I wanted a couple of new items to wear this year.

Magellan thermal shirt

Yellow and pint cotton blouse. Great under my denim jacket.

The above blouse is from Gap! Haven’t purchased anything there in years.

Cute thermal t-shirt

I love the sleeves on this white blouse.

It was from Ann Taylor Loft. Nice.

This is most definitely going to be my favorite skirt this fall.

It has a precious eyelet layer underneath.

Not the most popular brand anymore, but still nice and something I would never purchase outright. I guess this would be considered a slurge at $6.88.

Pretty linen skirt.

Judging from the tag, this shirt was made in the 70s or 80s. It’s really fallish. I also purchased this skirt tonight. It’s an Old Navy jersey knit that’s super comfortable.

I’m a big fan of these short-sweaters. Alabama sweaters.

Dark green is one of my favorite colors to wear. This is a Walmart brand blouse but it is in excellent condition and cost $.50.

Love this color!

Banana Republic! I think I’ve been in there once in my entire life.

This is another Magellan shirt. It’s the kind with UV protection and a flap on the back for air flow. Great for outdoor activities.

I’m not usually a fan of cap sleeve and this looks a little springy but it is oh so cute.

All in all, I spend $60.00. In addition to all this, I got several other articles of clothing and some cleaning supplies. Did I need to spend $60.00 tonight? No? But isn’t this stuff adorable?