Sugarlaws: Living Sweetly.

Entries Tagged as 'life'

the old apartment

March 17th, 2014 · 2 Comments


In August, while I was in New York for a project, I found myself staying in a hotel that was about five blocks from our old apartment in the West Village. Since I was in the mood for ice cream and knew the best spot in the neighborhood (L’Arte del Gelato, since renamed Dolce Gelateria, on Bleeker Street), I figured I’d take a walk past our old door on my way there.

And it’s funny: you know how muscle memory kicks in when something is so completely familiar to you, even if it’s been a long time? As I walked past my old subway stop, I didn’t need to think about where I was going. My hand was on the doorknob before I even realized I’d made the turn.

(It was locked, obviously. This is New York we’re talking about. But I couldn’t resist texting Chad a picture of our old doorway before I kept going.)

When we left Manhattan, I had extremely mixed feelings about it. My rational mind knew it was the “right” decision and it made the most sense for our lives… but that didn’t mean that I was ready to go.

I sometimes describe it to friends as the “one more year” syndrome. I knew that New York wasn’t our long term plan, but I wanted one more year before we left.

But the thing about “one more year” is that it’s not a decision — it’s the postponing of a decision. A tiny part of me knew that if we stayed another year, I’d want one more, and then one more.

I loved New York. And while I liked the idea of Texas and all that it had to offer (warm winters, the chance to buy a house, the possibility of kids), I wasn’t sure that I wanted all of that right now. Next year, maybe. But right at that moment, I liked my life the way it was.

And on the eve of another huge change, two years later, I find myself thinking about that decision almost every day. For a long time, I felt the same way about having a baby as I did about leaving New York — sure, I knew that I wanted to do it someday, but not quite yet. When Chad and I bought our house, we agreed that we’d spend a year getting adjusted to it before trying to have kids. Our timing turned out to be impeccable — I found out I was pregnant a year and three weeks after we moved in.

I’m very glad we took that year — this was one of those cases where “one more year” made all the difference. But even when you’re ready for them, life changes are huge and exciting and wonderful — and they’re also terrifying. No matter how excited you are for the next step, you’re still giving something up.

So I look at our old apartment kind of the same way I look at our pre-baby life. It’s full of wonderful memories. There are things about it that I miss terribly (gelato being one of them). And while I’m happy to be moving forward, there’s also a little ache that comes with thinking about the many things we’ll be giving up in a few weeks — sleeping in on the weekends, long, leisurely dinners without babysitters, quiet time to myself.

But here’s how our New York move worked out: now that the dust has settled, I find myself constantly grateful that it all happened the way it did. Change isn’t always easy, but it makes room for wonderful, exciting new things in your life — things that couldn’t have fit if everything had just stayed the way it was.

Sure, I miss walking around the West Village on Saturday afternoons, and I miss the noise and excitement and energy of living in Manhattan. But I also love our new life here in Texas. I love our little neighborhood, and my job, and our house, and the many new and wonderful friends we’ve made in the last two years. And most of all, I love this little baby boy who’s going to be officially joining us in five more weeks.

So this weekend, I took a moment to be uncomfortable with all the changes that are heading our way. I let myself be nervous and terrified and overwhelmed by just how much our life is about to be completely different.

And then, I let it go. Because two years from now, I’ll probably look back at this post the same way I now look at our New York apartment. It was a wonderful moment to be in, but it was also followed by other wonderful, different moments.

Everything changes.

And that’s not so bad.

22c89f3a02d611e3a07e22000a1f9a28_7{Yes, at the end of all that, I got my gelato. And it was just as amazing as I remembered it.}

Tags: baby · life

one thousandth post!

March 7th, 2014 · 4 Comments


Yesterday, I realized something totally insane: Today is my one thousandth Sugarlaws post

I think I was subconsciously anticipating this huge milestone when I wrote on Wednesday about all the transitions I’ve gone through since starting this blog, but it’s crazy to think that in the last five years, I’ve written over a thousand posts on this site! 

I’d write about all the amazing ways my life has changed since starting this blog, but I already did that a few days ago

So I’ll just say this:

Sometimes the biggest moments in our life start in the smallest, least anticipated ways.

When I started Sugarlaws, I had no idea of the journey it would take me on.  I didn’t have a clue that it would change everything about my life, or that it would ever become such an integral part of my day-to-day.  It was a place to keep track of recipes as I made them, and my own little corner of the internet that I assumed no one would ever visit. 

I had no idea of the challenges and incredible opportunities it would bring my way, and I had absolutely no inkling of how many of my dreams it would make come true. 

I thought I was starting a blog.  I had no idea that I was starting a whole new life.

If you’re curious, check out my first post here.  Blogging was a different world back then — no magazine-style photos, no graphic designers creating the perfect layouts.  It was a lot less polished, but there’s something kind of sweet about starting that way. 

What a long, strange, and ultimately incredible road it’s been from there.





Tags: life · style

Baby Bump: 30 Weeks!

February 28th, 2014 · 2 Comments


One thing I’ve been meaning to talk about for quite some time: Pregnancy weight gain. 

I get a lot of questions about how I’ve kept my weight gain in check, and honestly, I think it’s important to talk about, because I don’t want to give the wrong impression. 

My rule for eating is pretty much the same, pregnant or not: I listen to my body, and beyond that, I try not to think about it. 

That means that if I want a cupcake or two, I eat them.  It means that when I felt like candy was helping keep morning sickness at bay, I kept Laffy Taffy in a container next to my bed for three months.  It means that, lately, I get up most nights for a bag of M&Ms around two-thirty in the morning. 

No, I don’t eat junk food all the time.  I make sure to eat tons of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, and other nutritious foods — overall, I’ve probably made healthier choices since August than I did before getting pregnant.  But it means that I listen to how my body feels: when I’m hungry, I eat.  When I’m full, I stop.  And beyond that, I try to put it out of my mind completely.

At the end of my first trimester, I was a little nervous about my weight gain.  I was up 7 pounds, which is above the recommended guidelines for the first trimester pretty substantially.  I tried not to freak out about it, but part of me was a little nervous that I was headed for a 50+ pound weight gain.

But at the same time, I was eating the way I always do: I hadn’t made big changes to my eating habits, but I was suddenly, quickly gaining weight. 

It took some effort, but I forced myself to put it out of my mind.  If I gained a few extra pounds, I’d probably lose them eventually, and it felt wrong to beat myself up for a little extra weight when I was just doing what I felt like my body needed. 

And now, with the benefit of hindsight, I know for sure that gaining weight early on was exactly what my body needed.  I’m so grateful that I gained a few extra pounds during the first trimester, because with heartburn and general lack of space inside my body, it’s harder and harder to put on weight as the weeks go by. 

But if I’d gotten freaked out about the numbers on the scale at week 14, and tried to limit what I was eating?  That could have been very dangerous, for the baby and for me. 

Especially now that I’ve had the experience of being pregnant, I hate the magazines that scrutinize celebrities for gaining too much weight at this incredibly sensitive time.  There have been many, many days in the last seven months when I’ve felt bloated or huge or just generally frumpy compared to my pre-pregnancy self, and I can’t imagine what it must be like to have that experience in the public eye.

Because here’s what it ultimately boils down to:

More so than any other point in your life, you have so little control over your weight during pregnancy.  Your body is going to do what it needs to for you and the baby, and that is something you can’t (and shouldn’t) try to micro-manage.

So my pregnancy weight gain advice is this: Use these months as an opportunity to be in tune with your body, and to reward it for the amazing work that it’s doing every day.  Focus on getting the nutrition that you and the baby need, but beyond that, don’t stress about it.  Your pre-pregnancy jeans will be there, whether it takes you a month or a year to get back into them. 

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How far along? 30 Weeks

Total weight gain/loss: 19.5 pounds. 

Maternity clothes? Pants, still mostly in my regular tops and dresses.

Stretch marks? Still no!

Symptoms: Heartburn, heartburn, heartburn.  I take Zantac or Tums depending on the day, but it’s still not enough, sigh.

Sleep: Still pretty bad.

Best moment this week: Having my mom in town to prepare for the baby shower!

Worst moment of the week: I had a momentary freak-out when work got extremely busy, but I’m learning to just take things as they come and not worry so much about things I can’t control.  It all got sorted out!

Have you told family and friends: Yes!

Miss Anything? Eating without being wildly uncomfortable afterwards.

Movement: Lots!

Food cravings: Cupcakes, cake pops.  Every. Single. Day.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.

Have you started to show yet: I am huge!

Labor Signs: Nope, but getting more and more sensitive to every ache and pain!

Belly Button in or out? In!

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!

Looking forward to: My baby shower TOMORROW!!!

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Tags: baby · life