Simple Days

Simple Days

by Erica Lea


Blood Moon

Blood Moon

The other night we had an eclipse of the moon. We spotted it on our way home from Reuben's family's house.

I grabbed my camera, tripod, and 80-200mm lens, and fiddled around until I got a decent shot,


A Haircut

About a month ago, I decided it was high time I got my hair cut. It was impossible to keep a curl, and my head was starting to hurt if I kept my hair in an updo for too long.

Here is the before and after.

I decided to keep it a secret from Reuben. We had already discussed getting a haircut, so it wasn't going to be a total surprise.

I also decided to wait and see how long it took him to notice that I had cut my hair. He didn't notice at all - I had to tell him a few days later! I guess the difference wasn't as big as I thought. :)

I'm quite pleased with the cut. My hair will now hold a curl for 3 days with proper care.

When was the last time you cut your hair? Do you go to a salon or cut it yourself? 


Elinor Turns 7

Elinor Turns 7
A couple of Sundays ago, my niece, Elinor, turned 7. Wow. It seems like such a long time ago that I was photographing her birth. My life has changed so much since then.

Elinor Turns 7
My sister (Elinor's mom) threw a casual party in honor of the day while the rest of my family was camping. We frosted the cupcakes at the campground playground.

Elinor Turns 7
Helen and her mini cupcake (with a frosting rose).

I'm slowly coming to peace with the fact that Helen eats "unhealthy" food. Reuben has really pushed me to let go, but it hurts. I want what's best for Helen, but I don't want her to lead a strict life, either.

Elinor Turns 7
The guys, keeping entertained with cards and video games (and watching video games).

Elinor Turns 7
Judah, enjoying his cupcake and ice cream.

It's kind of funny to think that in another 7 years Elinor will be 14. I wonder what she'll be like as a teenager...


20 Week Pregnancy Update

20 Weeks
Weight this week: 118.2 pounds

Measurement around waist: 28 1/4"

Measurement around belly: 29 3/4"

How big is baby? Baby weighs about 10.5 ounces and measures about 6.5 inches long.

Maternity Clothes: I haven't bought any new maternity clothes, but I got a non-maternity outfit for a wedding we attended last Saturday. I had NOTHING to wear, so I had an emergency shopping trip the night before the wedding. Ack!

Movement: I'm definitely feeling the baby move more now, and not just when there's pressure on my belly. It's pretty fun.

Cravings: For the last week or so I've been craving baked goods. *Maybe* it's just the advent of fall. I hope it doesn't last the rest of pregnancy - that wouldn't be good for my waistline! :P

Aversions: Nothing new, and it seems that a lot of my aversions/nausea have gone away.

Aches/Pains: I've been feeling pretty good these last two weeks. But the bathroom trips have become more, ahem, urgent. I'll be doing just fine, when all of a sudden it feels like someone is poking my bladder. Very uncomfortable!

Sleep: I've fallen into somewhat of a sleep routine. I'm usually in bed before 10 or 11, and sleep until around 6:45 when Reuben's alarm goes off. I try to doze off again, but I have to get up and fix Reuben's lunch before 7:45 when he leaves. I haven't been having to use the bathroom in the middle of the night as much, which is really nice.

Fitness: I'm finally getting back into a routine after being sick for so long. I try to work out an hour or so after I eat breakfast. That way I get it done first thing and don't have to think about it for the rest of the day.

And that's my 20 week pregnancy update! How are you feeling this week?

You can compare this week with my 20 week update from last pregnancy HERE.



A Toddler Bed For Helen

Note: This post contains some affiliate links. All opinions are my own.

Helen's Toddler Bed
Helen's Toddler Bed
Helen's Toddler Bed
Helen's Toddler Bed
Helen's Toddler Bed
Helen's Toddler Bed

This toddler bed has been a long time coming.

Reuben and I have been wanting to try our hand at homemade furniture for a while, and we decided to start with a toddler bed. 

This spring we purchased some lumber and slowly began working on the bed. I knew I didn't want to use any chemical-filled stains or varnishes, so I researched some natural options. Reuben's mom and dad suggested that we could burn the surface of the wood to darken it, and use tung oil to seal it. We tested it on a small piece of wood, and decided to go for it.

So, after a lot of sanding, burning with a blowtorch, and finishing with tung oil, we were finally ready to screw everything together. I use "we" loosely, since Reuben did all of the piecing together. But I was moral support!

I am very pleased with the results, and now I want to try my hand at more furniture-making. We are in desperate need of a bookshelf, and I'd like to make a little table for Helen.

We used Helen's crib mattress for the bed, so we'll have to purchase another one when the new baby arrives. I wanted to purchase an organic/chemical-free mattress anyway, so this is a good excuse. I'll be purchasing the Babe Safe mattress cover for Helen's bed one of these days...


Bed Plan: Tatum Toddler Bed from Anna White
Stain: Burning with a blowtorch
Finish: 100% Tung Oil
Sheet: Organic cotton, purchased from Gilt
Quilt: Made by a family member


18 Week Pregnancy Update

18 Weeks
Sorry I haven't posted sooner, guys! I meant this to be a 16 week update, but something happened that  changed my life forever, and I took an emergency break from blogging. Then I got sick with a cold, fever, and what I think was bronchitis (coughing and chest pains).

I'm hoping to do a pregnancy update every 2-4 weeks - I haven't decided how frequently I should update. What do you guys think?

I met with my midwife for the second time on Wednesday, and everything is going well. I have pretty low blood pressure - 90/56, if I remember correctly. And my placenta is on my right side.

My belly is definitely starting to show, but it's still at an awkward size. People that don't know I'm pregnant probably think I'm a bit tubby. Ha!

Weight this week: 117 pounds. I was 111 pounds right before I got pregnant. I was actually losing weight the last few weeks because of stress/sickness. My midwife said she'd like to see me gain a bit more weight. I'm actually exactly the same weight that I was at this point last pregnancy!

Measurement around waist: 28 1/4". My waist was 26" when I was 4 weeks pregnant.

Measurement around belly: 29 1/2". It was 27 1/2" at 4 weeks.

How big is baby? According to BabyCenter, baby is about 5 1/2 inches long and 7 ounces, about the size of a bell pepper.

Maternity clothes? Most definitely. I started wearing maternity jeans about a month or so ago. I waited longer last pregnancy, mostly because I didn't have any maternity jeans. But they are so comfortable on a growing belly and sensitive bladder (sorry, TMI!). My regular jeans still fit me just fine, but if you can feel like you're wearing PJs all the time, why not?

I purchased some maternity skinny jeans from thredUP (use my link to receive $20 off your first order).  I'm definitely going to be purchasing more maternity and maternity-friendly items there. And I might post some maternity outfits here on Simple Days.

Movement? Yes! I wondered if I felt the baby move about a month ago, and I was sure about 2 weeks ago. I can feel it most if I lay on my stomach or if something presses against my tummy.

Cravings: Nothing major. Sometimes pickles. Fresh fruits and veggies.

Aversions: Fast food (it leaves a bad taste in my mouth), and some Mexican food.

Aches/Pains: My back was hurting pretty badly when I slept during the first trimester. It has gone down a lot, probably because I'm sleeping less at night. I've been needing to use the bathroom a lot more frequently. And my energy is definitely down. I also had some gas/bloating during the first trimester - I don't remember that being an issue when I was pregnant with Helen.

Sleep: During the first trimester, I was so tired. I was sleeping about 10 hours every night. Now I can't seem to sleep more than about 8 hours.

Fitness: Right before I got pregnant, I did a Whole30 and Jillian Michael's Ripped in 30. I noticed towards the middle-end of the 30 days that I was getting more tired. I figured it was because I was doing Whole30, but I think it was because I was pregnant (and didn't know it yet). I've had to dial back the intensity of my workouts because I just don't have the energy. I try to work out 4-5 days a week. I would be fine with only working out 3 days a week, but unless I try to work out every week day, it doesn't seem to happen. That's what works for me! I haven't been able to work out for the past 2 weeks because of sickness/being busy. Hopefully next week I can get back into a routine.
Maybe I'll do a post about my prenatal fitness routine.
Also, I've been *trying* to drink about 6 cups of water a day.

Supplements: I've been taking the Vitamin Code Prenatals, desiccated liver pills, cod liver oil, and an extra vitamin E supplement. My midwife suggested that I take extra vitamin E until the third trimester to help prevent another placental abruption. I'd also like to add in a probiotic and a vitamin K supplement.

6-18 Weeks
Here are my progress photos from weeks 6-18. I know there's not much difference between the first 3 photos, but I figured I show you guys anyway.

So that's my 18 week update!

Note: Some links are affiliate. All opinions are my own.


We're Expecting!

Pregnancy Announcement

I'm super excited to finally be able to tell you guys: We're expecting!
I'm 14 weeks along and my due date is February 11.
Prayers for a safe pregnancy would be much appreciated. 
I'll write another post soon with updates about how I've been feeling and all that.

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