Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What's In A Name

Good Morning,

Have you noticed that we have a nickname for our baby? (who as I write this is kicking away) Yup that is right we typically refer to our baby as Baby H.  As I stated awhile back we have decided not to find out what we were having. Overall it hasn't been that hard. A few of my girlfriends think that Joe and I know what we are having but I SWEAR we DON'T. But in the last week Joe and I are both itching to know if Baby H is a boy or a girl!

Where did Baby H come from? Well I don't know exactly how we came up with it but it doesn't stand for anyhting except our last name Haluska!  It doesn't specifically tie to a boy or girl name. Many people have asked us if we have names picked up. When I was about six months pregnant we got serious, made a list, and the following day every single one of those names floated away and I pretty much forgot the names. We really never disagreed about a name on the list. I would say Joe an I lean towards the traditional side of names more than the trendy side though. Back to the list, well I have my bag packed for the hospital and I re-read the list again and am good to go. I have this feeling that once we see sweet baby H's face we will know what their name should be.

What about our names?Erin- For a little background my mom thought that I was a boy when she was pregnant and she had picked out the name Patrick (which I still love to this day) Once she saw me though she considered the names Meghan and Molly- can you tell the reoccurring theme IRISH! And then she remembered some hair clips that she had seen in a store with the name "ERIN" on it and does it get more Irish than that? Ha Ha Ha Secondly my middle name is Eileen, another name I love. Some people call me Eileen and I love that it is my dear grammie's mom's name and a few of my second cousins have the exact same name of Erin Eileen.

Joe- Well Mr. Joe was a surprise baby as well and his family didn't know if he was a boy or a girl. His dad got to do the naming since he turned out to be a boy!! Joe's dad's name is Joe as well and he wanted to contuine the tradition with his son. His middle name of  Steven comes from two people Steve a friend of his dad who passed away in a car accident and his uncle Steve who is his uncle on the Haluska side.  I asked Joe if wanted to contuine the tradition of naming our first son Joe but he has decided to keep all the Joe attention to himself.


Monday, September 26, 2011


Good Morning Bloggers,

Hope you had a great weekend!! We sure did! It was busy around here! Saturday my mom came into town and hung with us which was great! It was a beautiful Fall day. Saturday evening Joey's cousin Adam came into town because they were running a half marathon on Sunday. They powered through it and did a great job!!!

It has been awhile since I have done a post on blogs that I am loving at the moment so I thought it was time for one of those!! I hope you enjoy!

-The Girl Who Ate Everything, is a great cooking site. Her pictures will make you mouth water and her recipes are easy ot follow. She has a great recipe index set up as well so if you are looking for something specific you can find it!! Happy Cooking

-The Small Things blog is a blog that was created from a hairstylist and she does AWESOME hair tutorials. Besides that she is an avid DIY-er and does posts on great projects with frequent giveaways!

-320 Sycamore is a decorating, DIY blog and features a great series which is titled under $10.00 in an hour! Which is perfect for me!

Friday, September 23, 2011

36 Weeks

Good Morning,

Well today is the big update on 36 weeks!!!! We are here, the 9th Month!! Wow time flies when you are pregnant, well most of the time flies when you are pregnant. I think if you ask any pregnant women when they are 36 weeks pregnant they would say to you "I'm ready to meet this baby already"

 So here is the much needed bump picture update!!! I just recently looked through the post at the picture updates it is pretty cool to look back at the changes.

From here on out I go once a week to the my midwife. I am so glad that I found a practice that LOVE it is important to feel comfortable when you are pregnant with the care that you receive.

What is going on with baby H this week:
Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. He/She now weighs almost 6 pounds (like a crenshaw melon) and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. He/She's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered his/her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected his/her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of her first bowel movement.

At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. (Full-term is 37 to 42 weeks; babies born before 37 weeks are pre-term and those born after 42 are post-term.) Most likely he/she's in a head-down position. But if she isn't, your practitioner may suggest scheduling an "external cephalic version," which is a fancy way of saying she'll try to coax your baby into a head-down position by manipulating her from the outside of your belly

I had a  check-up this week and everything is going well. The baby is head down which is great news and they are estimating that the baby is going to be in the 8lbs range.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Good Morning,

The other weekend we had some of our friends over for a little in home tailgating party!!!
It was a ton of fun and the new recipes that I tried out worked great so I wanted to share some of them with you since they scream FALL to me!

Carmel Apple Cupcakes

1 (18.25-ounce) package spice cake mix

2 large eggs

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup milk

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 cup peeled, cored, and chopped Granny Smith apple (about 1 large apple)

35 caramels

1/4 cup evaporated milk or heavy cream (or regular milk)

1/2 cup chopped pecans

24 wooden craft sticks

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine cake mix, eggs, sour cream, milk, and vegetable oil until incorporated (about 30 seconds). Scrape sides of bowl and then beat on med-high speed for 3 minutes. Stir in chopped apple.

2. Spoon batter into paper-lined muffin pans, filling two-thirds full. Bake 18-20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Do not overbake. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

3. Meanwhile, combine caramels and milk in a medium saucepan over very low heat; stir 4 minutes or until smooth. It's very important to keep the heat very low because if the caramel gets too hot it will become really hard when cooled.

4. Spread caramel mixture over cupcakes being careful to not touch the caramel to the paper liners or it will stick to the liners; immediately sprinkle with pecans, pressing in slightly. Insert a wooden stick into center of each cupcake. Store covered in an airtight container. It's best to serve the cupcakes the same day that you add the caramel topping. Caramel will soften if kept at room temperature for too long so store in the refrigerator until ready to serve then let come to room temperature to let caramel soften up a bit.

Buffalo Chicken Dip 
1 (10 ounce) can chunk chicken, drained (I use one 12 oz can from Costco)

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup Ranch dressing

1/2 cup Buffalo wing sauce (such as Frank's Red Hot, not to be confused with their pepper sauce. Start with less if you want and add more to your desired hotness.)

3/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

blue cheese crumbles (optional)

Heat chicken and Buffalo sauce in a skillet over medium heat, until heated through. Make sure to break up the chicken so there are no big chunks. Stir in cream cheese and ranch dressing. Cook, stirring until well blended and warm. Mix in shredded cheese. Pour into a shallow dish or pie pan and sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles and microwave it until the cheese melts. We usually only sprinkle blue cheese on half of it for those who aren’t blue cheese fans. Serve with chips for dipping.

Are you hungry yet????

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I've Hit the Jackpot and I am Sharing with YOU!!!

Good Morning Bloggers,

Hope you are doing well!!! This weather is unreal one day it is cloudy, chilly and the next day it is sunny and the windows are opened throughout the house!

Well today I have some exciting news to share with you.

I recently hit the JACKPOT!!!!!

That is the beauty JACKPOT!!
And I am sharing the news with you.

You must check out:

This is a monthly box that gets mailed to you for $10.00 with all kinds of beauty samples. I am a beauty product junkie but I like to try things before I buy them and this is perfect and you cant beat the price.

Have a great day!!!

Monday, September 19, 2011


Good Morning,

Well this morning marks an important date in our home

1 month

from today is our


Thursday, September 15, 2011

35 Weeks

35 Weeks is Here!! Wow!

I cant believe it, I am almost 9 months! Overall it has gone by fast but in these recent days anxiousness has set in to meet this little one.

Our house is starting to look like a home with a baby with boxes of diapers, wipes, and little socks and onsies fill it up.

I really haven't gotten a ton of clothes for the baby as we don't know what we are having. I have a few items for both a boy and a girl and then some yellow items.

I am still feeling good. The swelling that happened a few weeks ago has seemed to pass and the only thing that has changed is sleeping at night. In this past week I haven't slept more than 4 hours straight. I don't feel overly tired, or anxious I just cant sleep. Throughout the day I do get tired from time to time.

We have been advised by our midwife to not travel to far away as at my last appointment I was having some heavy Braxton Hicks contractions. Limiting our travel to 2.0 hours

No picture this week of the bump, my official photographer has been out of town all week on travel for work and as hard as I tired Wrigley just couldn't get the swing of the camera. I promise next week for a bump picture.

What's Going On With Baby This Week:
Your baby doesn't have much room to maneuver now that he/she is over 18 inches long and tips the scales at 5 1/4 pounds (pick up a honeydew melon). Because it's so snug in your womb, he isn't likely to be doing somersaults anymore, but the number of times he kicks should remain about the same. His/Her kidneys are fully developed now, and his/her liver can process some waste products. Most of his/her basic physical development is now complete — he/she willspend the next few weeks putting on weight.

Baby, fetus at 35 weeks - BabyCenter

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Nesting: Fact or Fiction

Nesting: the uncontrollable urge to clean one’s house brought on by a desire to prepare a nest for the new baby, to tie up loose ends of old projects and to organize your world.

I have recently been bitten by the “nesting” bug in a huge way. I can feel time is ticking away and Baby H will be here before we know it and I have a million things that are piling up and I am anxious to get done around the house like re-organizing the kitchen, cleaning the carpets, dusting everything, and trying to get all the baby stuff organized and ready. When I do start to clean and organize, everything takes me double the time and I feel like I can’t get through all the necessary things that need to be accomplished prior to the baby arriving, and I am left feeling unaccomplished. After feeling this way several times I started to ponder the whole concept of “nesting” Is this something that naturally happens to all pregnant women? Is it hormonal or is it something that has been conjured up in our heads over many years from other pregnant women? In my opinion it is a little bit of column A and a little bit of column B. I think it is instinctual to want things ready for your little one, but I do think the concept of nesting has grown tremendously over the years and has become a “hot” topic among pregnant women, pregnancy blogs, websites, and forums. Is the baby really going to care if the junk drawer is organized or is it more important that mom and dad are rested, de-stressed, and connected for baby? I think I will go with the later and hope it is awhile before baby see’s the junk drawer.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Victory for My Husband

Good Morning Bloggers,
Hope you had a great weekend. We did. We were back in Joey's hometown and were able to see his Nana, Mom, Dad, and step mom which was great because the next time we go back we will have baby H with us! Very soon we will be going from a twosome to a threesome.

While we were back visiting family, there was something else that was very important to my hubby and that was the Iowa vs. Iowa State football game. Joe went to Iowa State and cheers for them but also cheers Iowa. He has had family members play for both teams so at times he is torn. For this game though he was cheering for Iowa State. It is a huge game because these two teams are BIG rivals and the game was in Ames.

Well guess who won??????????????????????????????????

Joe did a big victory lap when it happened. It was a great game with 3 overtimes!
Below is a picture of Joe and his good friend Jay who happened to be back in Albia sporting some gear:

Friday, September 9, 2011

34 Week Update

Happy Friday Bloggers,

The weekend is right around the corner!! yeah! This house is getting ready to break out our red and gold to cheer on the Iowa State Cyclones vs. Iowa Hawkeyes although we also cheer for the Hawkeyes since Joey's cousin is on the football team!!

More importantly than football, how about a baby update:

I am currently 34 weeks along! It has gone by so fast, I cant believe that I have a little over a month to go. A week ago I was having a problem with swelling of my feet and calves but had a doctors appointment this week and was checked for preclamsia and toxemia and I don't have either which was a big relief and the swelling has pretty much gone away! yeah! Besides the swelling I am feeling good but it seems like this week anxiousness has set in to see our sweet baby and to know if it is a GIRL or a BOY! Joey has been working so hard on the nursery and it is looking great.

What is going on with Baby H this week:
Your baby could be as tall as 20 inches right now and weighs about 5 pounds. The tiny fingernails are growing and have probably reached the tip of his/or her finger. Baby is gaining weight to reach it's birthday and practicing the skills they have learned like sucking, swallowing, and opening their eyes when they are awake and closing them when they are asleep. The skin is also smoother than ever. The central nervous system is maturing and her lungs are continuing to mature as well. If you've been nervous about preterm labor, you'll be happy to know that babies born between 34 and 37 weeks who have no other health problems generally do fine

Baby, fetus at 34 weeks - BabyCenter
The baby is about the size of a large cantelope but longer
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fall TV Preview

Good Morning Bloggers,

You know it is fall when the trees start changing, the weather cools, and pumpkins and mums fill the grocery store right? Well you also should know it is a sign that Fall is around the corner when the networks start showing previews to their new TV shows right?

This Haluska home doesn't watch ABC, NBC, or CBS very much I would say we are more BRAVO, ESPN, TLC, MTV, and ESPN 2 watchers. But this Fall season we saw a preview of a new show on NBC that we are going to give a shot to:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Taste of the Vine 2011

Goodness it is crisp this morning!!! September has arrived!!!!

For the past couple of years I have been volunteering for an organization called the Junior League of the Quad Cities. I have really enjoyed it and it has been a great source to meet women in the area. Over the years I have slowly taken on more responsibility and this year became the chairwomen of our annual fundraiser Taste of the Vine Wine Tasting. We have been plugging away on the fundraiser since May and now the month has arrived and the event will take place on September 29th 2011. I have really enjoyed working on the committee because I have been blessed with a great group of women to work with that have inspired me and kept the motivation up to make this a successful event. Another aspect has helped me grow in is planning non-for profit events and obtaining sponsorships which is huge when you are fundraising.

This event is going to be filled with entertainment, a wonderful silent auction, wine tasting, delicious food and the spirit of bettering our community!!!

With only a couple of weeks left I know it will go fast and I will make sure to give you an update after the event takes place and to post some pictures from it as well!!!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Good-bye to Summer, Hello to Fall

I had been thinking about this posting for awhile now and wasn't really looking forward to it because I would have to admit that summer was over! BOO I love warm weather and being outside so I am always sad to see this season end. However, after this weekend I am in a completely different spot with Fall arriving!! I am EXCITED! Joey got all my Fall decor out yesterday and it really put me in the mood for Fall. All the beautiful colors, new sights, new smells, crisp mornings, leaves falling, and fires in the backyard and of course Baby H's arrival!!!!! So below is a mini tribute to summer of the things that I will miss and then some things I am looking forward to this Fall!
Good-Bye Summer
 Sunbathing- you will be missed

Outdoor Entertaining- you will be missed (no this isn't my backyard but I can dream right)

  Lemonade Shake Up's- you will be missed too!

Welcome Fall
i NEEDED SOME INSPIRATION FOR MY MANTEL AND I FOUND ITLove this Fall decor. I just added these to my pinterest account and I love them. yesterday I started working on the mantel!

apple pie caramel apples Carmel Apples- these are apple pie Carmel apples and I think I am going to try to make them as well.

 Fall trees!!! Don't the colors just warm you up!
And finally . . . . . . . . . .

BABY H!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Happiness Is. . . . . . .

Good Morning Bloggers,

This morning I have some gratitude statements for you. In my opinion it is always good to be grateful for the things in life that make your heart smile=Happiness!!!

Happiness is . . . . . . . . . .

Watching and Listening to Madeline Jane and Joey laugh and twirl in the rain and saying how good the rain smelled!!

Holding newborn onsies, they are so little I cant imagine what it will be like when there is a baby inside of them.

Embracing swollen feet, this is a sign that the baby is coming right??? ha ha ha ha

Carrying a bundle of beautiful flowers from Trader Joe's to the car, they are beautiful and you don't have to feel guilty for getting them at the great price.

Reading a book on a front porch, this is happiness no matter rain, or shine.

Painting little toes and nails!

Looking at recipes for baking, I am not a good baker but maybe one day I will be!!!

Catching up with family and friends via a phone call!

Starting to plan our first family vacation of 3!!!!!!!!!! Details to come on that!

Being loved!

Have a great day and find your happiness!