let's be honest

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

i grew up in a household that used regular cleaning supplies found at the grocery store, mainly strong stuff to help keep our house clean. it never bothered me too much, besides the harsh smell sometimes. however, when bd and i got married, i noticed that all that strong stuff was bothering him. so i have been trying to find alternatives to the strong stuff. last year, i started reading jessica alba's book, the honest life. there was so many helpful information and so many things that i'm still learning about, but it was a great starting point for me.

after reading her book, and looking at the honest website, i decided to order some of the honest products. i've been using a couple of their items so i wanted to share my thoughts on some of these.

honest 4 in 1 laundry pods - i'm more of a liquid laundry detergent girl, but i was intrigued with these pods. i like that i can just drop in a pod and be done with it. one thing that i noticed was that it doesn't dissolve in cold water although it claims to dissolve quickly in hot & cold water. you get 50 pods and it's suitable for both regular and high efficiency washers.
honest laundry detergent - i'm a big fan of this liquid laundry detergent. i like the scent, very understated and clean. if you are used to the strong fragrance, you may not prefer this, but i definitely prefer it. it's suitable for both regular and high efficiency washers. you'll get 70 high efficiency loads.
honest floor cleaner - i love this floor cleaner. it has a citrus rosemary smell which i really like. you get 26 fl. oz. this is suitable for hardwoods, bamboo, laminate & other sealed floors so i like to use it on the kitchen floor. since our apartment is quite tiny, i love that i can clean the floor and it won't bother bd. i can definitely see myself still using this when our little one comes along.
honest stain remover - i wanted to love this stain remover as i feel like the ones out there can be so harsh; however, when i cleaned one of bd's pants, the stain didn't come out completely. i think it's good for fresh stains, but not on old stains. it supposedly works great on baby food, coffee & tea, berry juices, grass, wine, ketchup, and blood. i haven't had the chance to try it on all of those, but will continue to experiment with different stains, especially when the little one comes. it does have a french lavender smell and smells great.
honest bathroom cleaner - i love this bathroom cleaner. it has an eucalyptus mint smell which i think is perfect for the bathroom. since we don't have a window in our bathroom, i like that i can spray this in there and not freak out about our bathroom not being able to air itself out. this is a tub, tile and shower cleaner so i'll usually spray this on the shower and use a brush to scrub the shower.
honest glass & window cleaner - i don't use a ton of this since we don't have a bunch of glass or windows in our apartment but it does leave our mirror and windows streak-free when we use it. it doesn't have a smell.
honest conditioner - i actually haven't used this conditioner since i have a ton of other conditioners that i still have to get through. i'll definitely save this for my little boy since it's suitable for everyone in the family. it supposedly has a sweet orange vanilla scent.
honest face & body lotion - i haven't used this lotion yet either since i have a ton of other lotions to get through. this has olive, shea, jojoba & safflower oils to help hydrate your skin.
honest belly balm - i love using this on my belly. it has shea butter, olive oil, tamanu oil & calendula. i typically like to put this on right after i shower so it gets a chance to soak in. this is usda organic.
honest toilet cleaner - this has a tea tree eucalyptus scent. i like the smell of it and thinks it's absolutely perfect for the toilet. this is free of a lot of those chemicals that you find in toilet cleaners.
honest multi-surface cleaner (not pictured) - this has a white grapefruit scent. we both absolutely love this and ours is almost completely gone since we use it for everything.
honest bubble bath (not pictured) - i'm saving this one for after my pregnancy since i've heard conflicting things about taking baths while pregnant.
honest shampoo & body wash (not pictured) - bd was using this when he ran out of his regular shampoo. i used this as my body wash. this supposedly has a sweet orange vanilla smell, but it smells more like a cleaning product, and not the smell i was wanting on my body.
are there any brands that you have tried that you really like? i'm constantly trying to find products that will be a good fit for my family, especially since we'll have a little guy crawling around soon. due to the price, i will probably start making some of these at home, but am always open to products that are more budget friendly as well since we'll be attacking our budget and trying to find out how to still keep the same level of savings while starting our little family.

finger licking good

Sunday, April 27, 2014

nothing says summertime like some good ole' ribs. bd and i tried a new recipe, and it was absolutely delicious.

our recipe included some of this yummy rub. we rubbed some of this on the ribs and let it sit on the ribs for about 3 hours. we then cooked the ribs in the oven for 3 hours at 300, covered.
we then uncovered the ribs, added a coating of this onto the ribs and then cooked it for another hour in the oven.
the meat fell off the bones. the rub added just enough kick and the sauce was spectacular. i have a feeling we'll be enjoying this recipe all summer long. we bought everything from whole foods, including the meat. this was our first time trying whole foods' meat, and i have to say that the quality of the meat was a lot better and really contributed to the tastefulness.

and what else says summertime? sandals! target had a sale and i knew being pregnant in the summer meant sandals all summer long so i have been loving these.


third trimester

Friday, April 25, 2014

i can't believe i'm onto my third trimester now. that means three months left. my test for gestational diabetes came back and i'm negative for gestational diabetes which i am so relieved about. this pregnancy has been going well, and i want to keep that trend going.

the little guy has been quite active. especially at night. i tend to spoon the baby daddy at night and he keeps complaining that the little guy kicks him at night. it's amazing that he can actually feel the little guy's kicks. he also moves during the day, especially after i eat. he'll just be moving around and making my belly move as well. i'm getting used to his kicks and movements, but sometimes, it's fun to look down and wonder what kind of movements are going on in my belly.

i haven't had an ultrasound for a while now so i have been so curious where his head is and where his feet are. i'm excited for my next ultrasound and to see how he is positioned in my belly.

my taste buds was calming down, but lately, everything is leaving a weird after taste so i'm having to figure out what is working with my taste buds again. i was really hoping this part was over. however, this week, i did find that pulled pork bbq is hitting the spot, and not leaving that yucky after taste.

breakfast is another story. i was loving on some special k breakfast sandwich, but those aren't quite tasting right these days and so i tend to starve a little in the morning. oatmeal isn't quite tasting right either so i need to figure that out since i rather not starve in the morning.

i've also been feeling a little dehydrated so i'm making sure to drink plenty of water. for some reason, it's just not quite enough, but i'm working on it, always making sure to keep a bottled water close by. maybe my dehydration might explain why i am having this weird after taste.

anyways, thank goodness it's the weekend. good night.


rhea lana children's consignment event

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

i wasn't familiar with this until my friend A told me about it. it's a consignment shop and they have all sorts of things from maternity wear to children's clothing to toys, etc. this event only happens twice a year, once in the spring and the second in the fall. they have it in a lot of different states so check out their website here. if you are a mom to be, you can even shop early, and you bet I'm going for that!

on baby news, i have finally made it to the third trimester. i've been asking a lot of ladies about when they actually "popped." i feel like i have been about the same size for quite some time now. i feel huge as it is right now so it's hard for me to imagine being any bigger, but i need my little guy to be bigger than he is right now.


legs crossed

Sunday, April 20, 2014

i keep reading to keep my legs uncrossed to ensure that blood circulation goes to my legs properly. during the day at work, i tend to cross my legs, even at my ankle. it's a habit that I'm trying to break. i always notice myself crossing my legs, then i silently tell myself not to cross my legs. then a little later, i'll notice my legs start to cross again. it's just so much more comfortable to sit with my legs crossed. but hopefully i can stop doing this since i don't want any spider veins or anything of that sort.



why everyone needs an asian friend (or two, or three, or more)

Friday, April 18, 2014

one word. eggrolls. even if you have nothing to talk about, you can always just eat together. no talking involved. and if you do happen to start talking, you'll realize you might have something in common. and if you don't, then like i said, you can always just eat together.

if you can get yourself to that person's house when he/she is making eggrolls, then you have definitely scored. eggrolls are so much better fresh. the skin is still crispy and the insides are still piping hot. i grew up eating while my mom was cooking. she always encouraged us to eat then because the food is best right out of the oven, fryer, stovetop, etc. so of course, into my adulthood, i love eating while i am still preparing food. i tend to not be hungry once i am done cooking, but i savor the bites that were fresh.

this whole week, i had been thinking about eggrolls. the weather was a deterrent for me to go to the international supermarket, but finally i mustered up the energy and ran to the store and grab all my ingredients and made myself some yummy eggrolls. i have been eating a ton of eggrolls and i won't divulge the number of eggrolls since it is a bit embarrassing, but let's just say, my cravings are satisfied.


the mess my baby daddy had to clean up 

taking a break from his studying to help me

recipe here

gotta make sure they are nice and brown and not burnt

surviving busy season (while pregnant)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

as many of you are well aware of (and should be since we just passed the april 15th tax deadline!), busy season is an intense time for accountants in the states. we work long hours in order to meet various deadlines. we toil away into the night. our eyes stinging from staring at our excel worksheets for way too long. we dream about various accounting issues (or at least i do). we work weekends while the sun is inviting us outside. we wonder if we can survive yet another busy season after this. summer seems so far away. what have we gotten ourselves into?????

well, luckily, we survived (or so i hope).

this busy season was a little tricky for me, due to being pregnant and all the joy and fun that comes with that. i thought i would make a little list of how to survive busy season (while pregnant):

1. have your babe right before busy season! jk. although you can if you want to; however, i didn't want to miss a busy season, and it's not like we planned it exactly...
2. if you can help it, make sure the first trimester is not during busy season. the first trimester can be bad. for me, i was beyond exhausted. i don't think i would have survived. maybe if i could sleep from 11am to 4pm at the client, or in my car, although i think the client might look badly on that.
3. if you find yourself in the predicament above, ask for help! i was super nervous about being pregnant and going through busy season and i had a lot of help and support at work to help me not feel so overwhelmed. pregnancy is not easy and everyone knows that and your coworkers will be more than willing to help. if not, you need to come work for my firm!!!
4. don't push your body. during this pregnancy, i've learned just how smart my body is. it knows exactly what you need, so listen to it. don't fight it. sleep when you need to. eat when you need to. do whatever it is that you need to. but don't push it.

what other tips helped you through a crazy time at work/home/anywhere?

@27 weeks
made some homemade laundry detergent - super easy + super cheap
recipe here

pregnancy no-nos

Sunday, April 13, 2014

prior to my pregnancy, i really had no clue about what my knocked-up girlfriends went through. i mean, they made it look so easy. handling their other babies. washing dishes. working. looking all cute. reading their scriptures. going to church. all while smiling. and i'm over here like, tired, disheveled, and zoned out.

i never really considered the things that they went through, the sacrifices they made, the morning sicknesses they had, the foods they couldn't eat, the things they couldn't do. and now, i'm facing all those things right now. and boy, is it a lot of sacrifices. don't get me wrong, it's all worth making the sacrifice for. i've felt so many emotions that i've never felt before, and he is not even here yet. but i've come to realize how hard it can be to do this for nine months. the lows you feel. the highs you feel. and the ever which way you can feel sometimes that is just not explainable, but helps to just shed some tears.

as i have progressed through my pregnancy, i've learned more about some of the sacrifices that comes with it.

1. no smoking/alcohol. not an issue for me.
2. no activities that involve the risk of falling. i have someone to thank for this. this includes skiing, which i was going to attempt for the first time during my first trimester. not a good idea.
3. don't do anything that will raise your body temperature too high. this includes vigorous exercise. exercise is good, but now is not the time to go cray cray and try to set any personal records.
4. say no to toxic products. if you have to get a nursery ready, have your husband or a friend help you paint instead. and air that room out.
5. no sushi. this made me really sad. really, really sad. but i got to re-enjoy good ole' california rolls.
6. no deli meats. during my second trimester, all i could think about was sandwiches, so this was super duper hard. but i did order a lot of hot sandwiches so that worked out.
7. no raw eggs. i also did not know this until one of my clients told me, but restaurant-made caesar salad dressings typically have raw eggs. i was quite disappointed since there was a week that i couldn't stop thinking about caesar salads.
8. say no to high mercury fish. i was told to limit fish anyways since they do all have some mercury in them. but if you are craving some, eat the ones that typically have lower levels of mercury.
9. no caffeine. i don't drink coffee, but i do drink some herbal teas. and the other day, i actually read that there are some herbal teas that aren't recommended during pregnancy. who knew?!
10. laying on your back is not recommended once you progress towards your third trimester. the increased weight puts pressure on your vein that brings the blood from your lower body to your heart. i was really worried about this the first couple of times that i woke up on my back. i never really slept on my back pre-pregnancy so it was odd to wake up on my back. if you do end up on your back, don't fret. as long as you are not on your back for an extended period of time, i think you are okay.

these are just some of the things that i can think of that i've learned over my pregnancy so there are probably a lot more that i haven't added on here. let me know if i miss any big ones here. i'm always still learning.


thanks for the dress A!

my little kicker

Friday, April 11, 2014

lately this little boy of mine has been anything but quiet. when he was smaller, i would be worried when i couldn't feel the movements in my belly. i would sit quietly and place my hand on my belly, and try to see if it was him coming 'aknocking. i think i felt him hiccup a lot. it wasn't until about two weeks ago that he started making his presence known. he's quite active, especially at 11pm and lately at 5am. such convenient times.

when he's moving, i sometimes like to take a peek at my bare belly and watch my belly move. it is the oddest thing in the world, like a little alien is inside of my belly. and i know it's not, but isn't it still the oddest thing in the world? according to my what to expect app, my little kicker is practicing his movements for when he gets here. i am so glad my coworker told me about that app. every morning, that is the first app i check. i get to see how many weeks i am, how big he is and how many pounds and then they have these daily tips as well that is super informative.

i've been reading all sorts of different materials on stretch marks. and though you can't completely prevent it as it's partly genetic, keeping your belly moisturized is a good starting point. so here is what my belly has been getting rubbed on it:

from left to right:
here i am at 26 weeks.

food is my master

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

to say my life revolves around food is quite an understatement. food is my master. once i get caught in its fold, i can do nothing but surrender. and let all the goodness fill the empty spaces. last night, the sweets and i went to the grocery store and i picked up some beef ribs. i had dreams last night about these ribs. the things that i wanted to do to it. to rub and pat it with the best rubs (including a secret rub that momma yang gave me) and let it soak in the rub while in the oven. to watch it and smell it while it's erupting in flavor. it was such a tease, and yet i wanted the tease. i wanted it so bad that i didn't eat dinner until 9pm tonight. i wanted dinner to be these ribs. because, like i said before, i dreamt about these ribs last night. and it was one good dream. and that dream has now become a reality. and i think the little man is quite happy with the ribs as well. craving fulfilled.

on an unrelated note, my sephora package came in. and i am so excited.


a little hunk or a little ballerina?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

the first trimester

Friday, April 4, 2014

as i am nearing my third trimester, i figure i should jot down a few remnants of my first trimester before i forget.

to say i was tired was an understatement. i was completely wiped. i couldn't keep my eyes open past 7pm. i recall several times where the baby daddy would want to talk in the evening, and i would just have to tell him that i can't focus on what he was saying anymore. i needed sleep! i needed sleep so bad. and it felt so good. especially sunday naps. oh, those were just so good! and i did not fight the urge to sleep. i don't know if you can even fight that urge, to just close your eyes and drift off into...nightmares.

oh my! the dreams. they were crazy. and they were vivid. and sometimes, even dreams within dreams. i remember wishing i wouldn't dream so much because i would wake up more tired than before, even after 10, 11 or 12 hours of sleep. i always thought when you are dreaming, you are in deep sleep. and deep sleep was supposed to be super restful. but not during my first trimester.

i didn't have morning sickness. at least not throwing up and all that fun stuff. my taste buds were definitely out of whack though. before i would eat anything, i did this weird thing. i would visualize myself eating something, and that was how i could kind of figure out if it was going to taste good, or not. it was the oddest thing ever, being that i am not a very picky eater. i love food, most types of food. this food thing was probably the most frustrating part for me. i couldn't bring my lunch to work because i had to wait until lunchtime to figure out what my taste buds wanted. it totally ruled my life (and it still does). please, someone! tell me you know what i mean, and that i am not just crazy!!!

minty gum. i loved minty gum prior to my pregnancy. i wasn't much of a sweet flavored gum girl. i always wonder who would eat sweet flavored gum. wasn't the point of gum to make your breath all minty and everything? well, i couldn't stand the taste of minty gum for a few months. and then i realized, sweet flavored gum were probably made for knocked-up girls like myself. well, probably not, but that made sense to me. i'm going back to minty gum currently, but it does leave a little bit of a funky taste in my mouth currently.

i discovered my secret power during my first trimester. the power of the smell. and boy, this is one power i didn't want. i could smell the faintest of smell, and sometimes, they were not very good.

but thankfully, that is all behind me now.


our baby registry trip

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

we attempted our first baby registry trip. it was every bit as unproductive as i suspected. i think i came out of there more overwhelmed than i went in. the ladies there were super helpful, but anytime there is anything baby-related on my mind, i just start to shrivel up. it all seems to be coming up so fast and i am not even sure where to start, quite frankly. i am glad that we did go and at least start thinking about what we'll need for this little little babe.

please tell me what are your top must-haves? this includes for baby, for me, for everything pregnant-related. i need to start getting my overnight bag together, along with baby stuff and i would rather start slowly purchasing stuff than spending a butt load of money in one day.


the face of a first time daddy

i have no clue what this is, but the list says it's a must-have!

so many things.
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