Babymoon for the Books: A Dreamy Antique Treehouse

Treehouse. Babymoon. South Carolina. Games. Simplify. Love.
Rest. Reconnect. Dance parties. Magic.

These are the words that come to mind when I recount our babymoon last year in the most enchanting treehouse in the woods. I often remember this scene: waking up to the light pouring in through the two-story windows, watching birds get to work, and feeling oh-so-cozy by the heat of the fire.

It couldn’t get better.

enjoying-the-view-of-these-two-story-windows-treehouse-south-carolina

But it did.

Right there, lying in the queen of all vintage beds, soaking in the feels of this magical place, I felt our tiny baby dance more than I ever had before.

It’s as though he was wanting to join in the dance parties we had had the previous night.

maternity-pictures-on-antique-bed-at-south-carolina-treehouse

I soaked every bit of it up.

 Even though kids technically aren’t allowed in the treehouse, I enjoyed sneaking him in. 😉

We played games like Shut the Box (which we have since added to our home game collection!),

antique-phone-at-the-south-carolina-treehouse

enjoyed all of the finishing touches and attention to detail (like chocolate),

hid away from the cold weather (myself parked right in front of the heater 90% of the time), and felt the freedom to goof off (well, that’s him 100% of the time!).

We enjoyed old records spinning tunes for us, walks through the woods with friendly dogs, recalling old memories from our past, and dreaming about the future with this new child of ours.

Then we discovered the rope swing bed below.

cozy-rope-swing-bed-at-south-carolina-treehouse

Complete with a romantic banner and fluffy blankets, it was the perfect place to hide from the chilly winter air, finishing our scheming and dreaming.

enjoying our babymoon at the treehouse

This guy. My love. The guy who made me a mother.

Forever grateful.

I’m enjoying this throwback to our time at the treehouse, remembering those sweet days with my old and new loves. It’s not even a bittersweet feeling, it’s all excitement, BECAUSE WE’RE GOING BAAAACK!!! Next month to be exact. This was my Christmas present last year, and I can’t believe the time is already upon us. It’s not easy to secure a spot at this popular getaway (as you can see why!), and I’m feeling super lucky to go back. After devoting the last year to raising our boy, I’m looking forward to the time I’ll get to spend reconnecting with my love…

this time with coffee and wine. 😉

Fruitfully,
Alyssa

I’m Saying Thanks for Anxiety in My Most Difficult Year Yet

Happy Thanksgiving: Why I'm giving thanks for anxiety

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’m recalling what I am thankful for this year: Of course, my number one reason is my child, who is growing a love and joy in me like no other. It’s been a FUN year watching him grow, celebrating his first birthday, and achieving many major milestones, like walking. I’m also thankful for a wonderful marriage with my teammate; fun trips to Wisconsin, Texas, Atlanta and Oxford; good health for all my loved ones; and enjoying pretty much everything I have asked for. But one thing I didn’t ask for, what I would have told you 4 weeks ago was the worst thing ever handed to me, that I could never dream would be a blessing, has become what I am most grateful for this Thanksgiving: my struggle with anxiety.

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2500 Calories: What This Dietitian Eats & Why Calories Matter [Example Diet]

In my professional work as a dietitian, I am constantly talking to people who are afraid of food and calories. Many are putting themselves on diets that are too low in calories, mostly because of misconceptions and bad information about weight management. When calorie needs aren’t met, the body conserves energy for essential functions – like keeping the heart beating and lungs breathing. This happens because calories, by their definition, are energy.

Not eating enough calories (energy) = the body conserves calories (energy)

It’s a miraculous process, really, but it can be frustrating for people trying to lose weight or for people demanding extra energy out of their body for things such as exercise or breastfeeding.

Greinke pitching for the Los Angeles Dodgers: Why Calories Matter

And new Moms are often attempting to do it all: Breastfeed while trying to lose weight postpartum and live in the busy-ness of newborn life. When I became a Mom last year, I was shocked to find myself going many hours before being able to get food in my mouth. Pre-baby life, I was eating around the clock. This girl loves her food, and skipping meals wasn’t a phrase in my vocabulary.

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1 More Reason My Son Is My Role Model

Mother and son looking at each other with admiration. He is my role model.

Most nights (meaning the nights I remember), we answer a fun question from this Q&A A Day journal. I like these cheesy kind of things and taking a moment at the end of each day to reflect. And truthfully, sometimes it’s the only conversation I get to have with my hubby outside the normal day-to-day stuff.

A few months ago, we answered the question “Who is your role model?” Like most of my answers, I quickly wrote my son’s name. He has inspired us on a daily basis to become better people, for him and because of him. Watching the world through his eyes has made me appreciate the little things and has reminded me to slow down and enjoy life. What has been one of my favorite characteristics to witness is his resilience in learning. (In fact, that’s just what I wished for him before I even knew who he was.) Once he realizes that he’s beginning to do something new, he practices it ceaselessly.

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An Open Letter to My Child: It Won’t Be Easy

Dear child,

Don’t you see how much I love you? I would do anything for you, my love. You are the most precious part of life. I created you – I suffered for you – and it was worth every bit of pain to give life to you. It is my greatest treasure to watch you grow. And when you express your love for me, oh my…I can’t even begin to explain the way my heart feels in my chest. 

Mom holding newborn child

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7 Diet Principles You Won’t See on My Blog

7 diet free principles you won't see on my blog

As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, I hear many assumptions people have of what they expect me to believe regarding food, health, and eating. Most of my nutrition philosophy would probably surprise you (like this article I was quoted in about how I feed my child). So, I thought I would outline what you can expect to see and not see in this space.

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Learning a New Recipe – For Cooking Up Life

I feel like I’m learning a new recipe – for cooking up life.

I have made an editorial calendar for the blog mapped out for October, which was a lot of fun to plan. In between a full-time job, my daily duties, and making sure I’m present for my family, I’m squeezing out as much time as possible to get things running consistently. I’m up early and late working on the content, and I can’t wait to get it out! This is a fun hobby for me, a creative outlet, a place I can share my passion, and hopefully a way I can inspire a healthy relationship with food and eating.

cooking recipe with mom

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Harvey Means “Battle-Worthy” – Our Fight for Texas

Harvey

Harvey monogrammed onesie

It is a name that has spurned my heart with love and joy for the past year.

But this week, I am seeing footage of the devastation from Hurricane Harvey in Texas, and my heart is shattering. To see so much pain, wreckage, and even death surrounding my home state and my son’s name, I am deeply saddened.

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10 Ways to Go Halfsies to Double Your Nutrition!

10 Ways to Go Halfsies to Double Your Nutrition

Through many years of work as a nutrition professional, I’ve learned that not everyone is quick to adopt all of the recommendations for healthy eating. I’ve also learned that that’s fine, because we’re all allowed to have our own personal taste preferences. Our own history with eating, the way we were raised, and our cultural norms influence our palate, and that can still be honored. I work to find ways to meet people in the middle instead of trying to force changes that neither work nor are fun! Eating shouldn’t have to be a chore but rather an experiment.

So, to do this, I often recommend ways to go halfsies with the recommendations. This will help transition toward healthier eating, keeping some of the flavor of your favorite foods while also doubling the nutrition factor. In time, you may decide to go all the way, but even if you don’t, you’re still making a more nutritious choice! Read on for 10 ways you can go halfies to up your nutrition game:

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Friyay Everyday: Celebrating Life Like #YayEveryday

I love the Friyay movement as much as anyone. 👏🏻

Friyay and yayeveryday: Celebrating life

So many good things come on Friday: More time with loved ones, special events like concerts and parties, fun memories, two days off, most people are relaxing and having fun…and it just has good vibes. 💃🏼 Since a young age, we’ve been conditioned to work hard Monday-Friday, then we can kick our heels up and party. 🎉 But what about for those who work weekends? What if they’re off on Monday? Their Monday is likely less “a case of the Mondays” and more like #Monyay. What if someone likes their job, or perhaps it’s their only time to have community with others? Don’t they live with a spirit of #Monyay? My son walked for the first time last week on #Tuesyay, #Wednesyay we danced, and #Thursyay I rocked him to sleep. #Saturyay we slept in and had this most decadent (and healthy!) carrot cake, and #Sunyay we had a fun day at the splash pad.

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