I found out I was pregnant the night before the hubs and I left for a romantic weekend getaway to celebrate his 40th birthday. Since I was a few days late, I decided to take a quick test–mostly to confirm I wasn’t pregnant before indulging in all of the great local wine and craft beer Oregon had to offer. Of course I knew there was a small chance we had a bun in the oven but, I admit, I was still totally surprised when the word “Pregnant” suddenly appeared on the test.
At first I was convinced the test was the faulty 1-in-100 so I kept the news to myself that night and took 2 more tests before work the next morning. Not surprisingly, both of those were positive too. Suddenly the excitement began to set in.
The timing seemed almost too perfect. I decided to wait just a bit longer and break the good news to the hubs in Oregon. Not wanting to leave any evidence behind, I shoved all three pregnancy tests into my purse, along with a very special spoon that I had planned to stick in his latte if and when we got pregnant this year, and met him at the airport after work.
Not surprisingly, hubs wanted to kick off his birthday festivities the moment we landed in Oregon, starting with pre-dinner drinks. It quickly became clear I was going to have to break the news that night, with or without a latte.
Before heading to the restaurant, we stopped at a cute bar housed in an old schoolhouse, complete with a large patio and outdoor fire pits. Given the circumstances, I figured there was as good a spot as any to spill the beans. After we ordered our drinks (I opted for a cider as not to blow my cover), I promptly sent the hubs to find us a seat outside so I could pay the tab and slip the special spoon into his brew.
My excitement grew as I walked back to the table with our drinks. Feeling like I had to call attention to it, I nervously blurted out, “So strange–the bartender stuck a spoon in your beer!”
Not surprisingly the hubs looked completely and utterly baffled. He even grabbed the beer menu to see if the description offered any explanation. Looking back, I still don’t know how I kept a straight face through that! Utterly confused, he stirred, and stirred, and stirred his beer before finally pulling the spoon out and licking off the foam. After a closer look he muttered, “This is weird,” and flipped the spoon around to show me.
That’s about when I lost it—yes, I burst into tears—and the hubs realized it wasn’t weird at all, because we were having a baby! Bear hugs ensued as we both wiped tears of joy from our eyes and joked about this being the “ultimate” birthday gift. I’m not quite sure I’ll ever be able to top that one, no matter how hard I try.
Mamas, how’d you break the exciting news to your partner, or were you together when you found out?
The hubs and I have the incredible luck of spending the entire month of June here in Europe–a perfect mix of work and vacation, and a built-in babymoon, to boot! We arrived in Berlin on Sunday and, between bites of pretzels and spoonfuls of spaetzle, have been working from the small MyFitnessPal office here. Tomorrow we head to beautiful Ibiza for a glorious week of R&R on the beach with friends. The second half of our trip will take us all over Sweden–Gothenburg, Stockholm and Malmö are currently on the itinerary–and then on to Copenhagen just heading back to San Francisco.
I love traveling, and plan to do as much of it as I can before the babe arrives, but it can do a number on my skin–long flights in particular. To minimize the damage, I try my best to stay well hydrated and stick to my usual skincare routine even at 35,000 feet.
On the overnight flight from San Francisco to Copenhagen last weekend, I slipped off to the bathroom for my usual nightly ritual. For the past few weeks I’ve been using a fabulous new, plant-derived moisturizing serum, The Revitalizer from BIOSSANCE. After washing up, I applied just a few drops of Revitalizer onto my face and headed back to my seat for a little shuteye. I was pleasantly surprised to find my skin didn’t feel the least bit dehydrated or irritated even after 11 hours of flying–a red eye to boot. I think the combination of drinking plenty of fluids and my new favorite moisturizer made all the difference!
I’m a huge fan of products that serve more than one purpose, especially when traveling. This little bottle of Revitalizer is a lightweight morning moisturizer that doubles as a hydrating night serum–and as I recently discovered, it’s also a great cuticle moisturizer. It’s especially great under makeup as well. My tinted moisturizer now just seems to glide on, and applying liquid liner seems easier, too. A little goes a long way!
BIOSSANCE‘s The Revitalizer replenishes skin by using a moisturizer found naturally in your body, leaving your skin feeling nourished and revitalized. It’s dermatologist tested, paraben-free, hypoallergenic and noncomedogenic, meaning it will never clog your those beautiful pores of yours.
A special thanks to BIOSSANCE for kindly sponsoring this post. Of course, all opinions are honest and 100% my own.
Before I dive head first into this banana bread,I want to begin with a huge thank you for all of your sweet comments & congratulations on our big announcement the other week! Hubs and I are counting down the weeks (22 now) until our little peanut arrives. I know pregnancy posts may not be super exciting for or relevant for everyone who may read this little blog but, for those who asked or are wondering, I will be sharing occasional bumpdates along with some fun pregnant-lady stuff like maternity fashion faves and the joy of nesting in a small, San Francisco apartment.
Enough baby talk for now, though. Today I come bearing this delicious no added sugar banana bread, in part to make up for the long overdue recap of my 30 Day Sugar Challenge, but also because everyone should have a healthy, banana bread recipe in their back pocket–if for no other reason than to clear out the abundance of overripe bananas hiding in the back of your freezer.
As for the sugar challenge, it was harder than I ever anticipated, partly because I was secretly coping with some lovely side effects of early pregnancy, but also because I never once felt the “sugar-free euphoria” so many others seem to experience. I’m also not very good at mind games–especially when it comes to food restriction. Every day I missed having granola with my yogurt, and sadly, my morning lattes lost all their appeal. Unfortunately, that led to a rather unpleasant caffeine withdrawal as well. It was this banana bread saved me from cracking around the two week mark.
While I want to say I finished strong, I’ll be honest. I made it to day 21 before falling off the wagon, face-first into a batch of homemade chocolate chip cookies. I know full well that deprivation is the root of why restrictive diets fail, weight loss or otherwise. I also know that, when giving up on a “diet”, it’s common to go from one extreme to the other. Clearly, I was no exception.
It wasn’t a total loss, though. During the challenge, I diligently tracked what I ate purely for the purpose of a before and after comparison. Overall, my total sugar consumption decreased by an average of 16 grams per day, about 4 teaspoons-worth. That may not sound like a lot (even I was rather unimpressed with that number at first glance) but in one year’s time those 4 teaspoons add up to nearly 13 pounds–about 2 ½ of those 5-pound bags you see on supermarket shelves. And while my consumption of added sugar decreased, the amount of fiber in my diet increased by more than 20% (from 19 to 23 grams per day). Potassium, too. The boost in these healthy nutrients likely came from all of the additional fruit (and banana bread) I was eating to satisfy those sugar and carb cravings.
I didn’t make it to day 30 but I did learn a few valuable things in the process. On a personal level, I stink at restrictive diets but so do most people which is why they’re just about the worst idea ever. I much prefer having a healthy relationship with all foods–including my chocolate chip cookies–and enjoying everything in moderation. I’m also way more sweet-sensitive now. As a result I’ve cut back on the amount of honey in my homemade granola, use a bit less vanilla syrup in my morning latte and now bake banana bread without any added sugar.
And after tasting this I’m not sure I’ll ever make it any other way–besides adding a handful of chocolate chips of course.
Serves: About 12 | Serving Size: 1, 3-ounce slice
6-7 medium, overripe bananas, previously frozen and defrosted (fresh will work too)
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil (or other neutral-flavored oil of choice)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup walnut pieces (optional)
Butter & sea salt for serving (optional)
Note: If using fresh overripe bananas, roast them for 15-20 minutes at 450F and cool (reserving the liquid as well) before starting on the bread.
Preheat oven to 325F. Lightly grease an 8×4 bread pan and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the defrosted (or roasted) bananas, coconut oil, eggs and vanilla . Sift in the flour, baking soda and salt and stir until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool before slicing.