Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Lulu Dine and Wine - burger review

Last evening I had the great pleasure of having dinner with an amazing group of ladies.  Christie had chosen Lulu Dine and Wine as our meeting spot and I couldn't have been happier with her decision.

After perusing the menu I went with the "Classic Burger" and added cheddar cheese.  I also added lettuce, no tomatoes or mayonnaise, and instead of ketchup and mustard added their house made garlic aioli.  

Unfortunately their fryer was down and I could not get the usual side dish ... house cut frites.

Although I was tempted to change my order at the mention of no french fries to accompany my burger, I pouted for a minute instead and went with the roasted sweet potatoes.

Holy deliciousness.  The burger was cooked perfectly and was so juicy and flavorful.  You always know it's a good burger when you don't need to add a ton of condiments to enhance the flavor.  I really missed the side of fries but the sweet potatoes weren't bad after adding some hot sauce to them.  

And can we talk about this value meal?  This high quality burger with cheese AND a side was only $7 plus tax.  You can't really find a deal like that in many restaurants. 

It's safe to say this was one of my favorite burgers so far in Charlotte ... I can't wait to go again with Ryan so he can experience such a tasty treat.

Monday, February 27, 2012

36 weeks

4 weeks to go until Baby C's due date and 1 week until I'm considered full term.
This week I've been feeling extra tired and extra achy.  Sitting for long periods of time is NO BUENO for my butt.  I've also been waddling a lot more than I would like to admit.
I've still managed to hit up the gym a few times.  Today I took my weekly photos after jogging/walking on the treadmill at the YMCA.  I alternated between jogging and walking for 5 minute increments and did a total of 2.27 miles in 30 minutes.
I had another doctor's appointment today and found out that everything is still going well with Baby C.  My blood pressure was good, my hemoglobin was good, and Baby C's heartbeat was nice and strong.  Current weight gain is 30 pounds.  I'm still consistently gaining 1 pound a week. 
I'm a lot hungrier lately but can't seem to put down as much food as before ... both of which makes Ryan happy since he's been seeing my leftovers again AND gets to eat as many times as I do.  

Our awesome photographer has posted some photos from our maternity session on her blog.  Check them out and let us know what you think :)

Now it's time to meet up with the ladies for some dinner ... maybe there will be a burger review in the near future.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Heat wave

Today in Charlotte we finally have a great spring day and I get to spend it indoors hating today's work day (I don't hate my job its just the busiest day of the month).
It's currently around 67 degrees and I'm wearing flip flops and a tank top with my jeans.

I started my day off with some breakfast at Starbucks with Ryan and actually ordered an iced coffee! I haven't had one of those in a long time, especially since I stayed from away from caffeine throughout most of the pregnancy.

Oh iced coffee how I've missed you. You're delicious and refreshing and have caused baby Chalmers to jump around quite a bit in my tummy from the caffeine.

Happy Friday everyone!

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Return of the juice box

Today was a another "wear gym clothes to work" day. I headed over to the YMCA to do some treadmill jogging during my lunch break.

I ran for 20 minutes then walked for 4 minutes and completed 2 miles in 24 minutes.

Then I hightailed it back to the office cause I was starving. I made my peanut butter and jelly sandwich and paired it with some harvest cheddar chips and a apple white grape juice box.
Gotta love Motts for Tots.

There will definitely be more snacks had throughout the day since I know I'll be starving in 30 minutes.

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35 weeks

5 weeks to go!  Actually it's a little less than 5 weeks since it's taken me so long to post this update.  According to my Sprout app I have 32 days left.  Not much has changed in the past week other than a huge increase in size ... or so I think.  I'm definitely waddling around more and my stomach is getting in the way more often than not.
It's been a fun couple of days in the Chalmers' household.  This past weekend my friends in Charlotte threw me a lovely baby shower brunch at Brio's. Thanks to Christie for organizing everything and making the adorable shower gifts.  Hopefully I'll get around to posting pictures from both showers in the next couple of days.
We worked on the baby's room and bathroom all weekend ... well Ryan did.  He re-did the closet in his bedroom and painted the entire bathroom.  He also put together all of the furniture, the stroller, the pack and play, and anything else that came in a large cardboard box.  I did all of his laundry, including clothes, blankets, and burp clothes.  We are trying to be ready to go for his arrival.
We also had some maternity pictures taken by a photographer, Stephanie at Peepsake Studios.  We had a great time walking around the UNCC Botanical Gardens and can't wait to see the finished product.
I've made it to the YMCA a handful of times and have even ran outside.  My running has definitely slowed down to a jog, mixed with lots of walking breaks, but at this point I'm still happy I'm active at all. 
I've officially started wearing gym clothes or sweat pants to work every day.  No one really sees me since I spend 8 hours a day in my office.  I haven't given up all together on my appearance, though, and still like to look somewhat normal on the weekends when going out.  For now comfort is key and elastic waistbands have become my best friend.

My cravings are still cheeseburgers and pizza, although that's what they were pre-pregnancy.  I'm still trying to eat as healthy as I can, and will hopefully stay on track with the weight gain.  

Our next doctor's appointment is on Monday (week 36) so hopefully we'll have some more statistics for you then.  

Any takers on Baby Chalmers coming earlier than 40 weeks? 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cardio mix up

I hate using my lunch break for actual errands like today's 15 minute adventure. I needed to get stamps and mail out some cards and unfortunately had to stand in the typical "lunch errand" line for a long time at the post office.
By the time I made it to the YMCA the treadmills were all taken. So I started my cardio work out for today on the bike.

I did 1.67 miles in 10 minutes then jumped over to an open treadmill.

1.01 miles in 12 minutes. I jogged for 10 minutes and then walked for the last 2 minutes.
On my way back to the office I grabbed a smoothie from Smoothie King. When did smoothies start costing $5 for a small??!!? Ridiculous.

Still delicious though ... Love the angel food flavor.
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Friday, February 17, 2012

The Comet Grill

Today I can proudly say I ran for a cheeseburger. Using my midday jog as an excuse I convinced (ok maybe it doesn't take much convincing) Ryan to get a cheeseburger for dinner.

We wanted to try a new burger place so we headed to the Comet Grill. The place was definitely a small dive bar with a big emphasis on live music.

We sat at a table and waited for the bartender to take our order since it appeared there were no servers working.

I went with the Comet Classic, a burger with grilled onions, bacon, pimento cheese, lettuce, mayo, mustard, and ketchup served with French fries for $9.

The burger was pretty tasty. Let's face it, I ate the entire thing (which I guessed to be about 1/2 pound).

Will we ever go back? Probably not. The service was lacking and the place was a little too run down for my tastes. Plus I really didn't love the French fries.

The cheeseburger definitely hit the spot though. Can't wait to continue working on my list of burger places to try in Charlotte. It's the little things ...

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Break from running?

At 56 degrees and sunny today was definitely not the day to waste indoors during lunch. I luckily wore work out clothes to work today so there was no problem walking out of my building at noon to do a quick run around Uptown.

I kept up a good pace while enjoying some sunshine.

Random sculpture that I passed during my jog.

As I was wrapping up my jog I slipped off the street curb and rolled my ankle. Definitely not the way I wanted to end my jog for the day.

I currently have my ankle propped up on a chair and am anxiously (not) awaiting for it to swell up and turn lovely shades of purple.

At least I got in another 2.25 miles done in 22 minutes.

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Thursday, February 16, 2012

A new car accessory

Today I decided to skip the lunch work out and do a run after work. I drove over to the YMCA to jog/walk on the treadmill.

On the way to the gym I noticed my newest car accessory ... Baby car seat adapter.

It definitely caught me off guard ... Ryan had just installed it yesterday and I hadn't driven my car since.

At the gym I powered through 30 minutes of jogging and walking on the treadmill. I completed 2.46 miles while trying to page through the latest Cosmo magazine.

I was starving after my work out and couldn't wait to start on dinner. I used the last package of frozen empanada shells (Spanish pastry) that my mom had brought me from Florida. I stuffed each shell with cooked ground beef and baked them in the oven. On the side I made black beans, rice, and plantains.

The meal was a nice reminder of Cuban meals back at my parents' house.

Let's see if I can add work out number 3 to this week tomorrow.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Back in the gym

So I've become pretty lazy lately. I decided to just wear my gym clothes today to work to avoid having to carry my gym bag and waste time changing in and out of my gym clothes during my short lunch break. Maybe lazy should be replaced with logical?

It was such a time saver to walk to the YMCA today and jump on a treadmill instead of wasting time in the locker room. I jogged and walked almost 2.5 miles in 30 minutes.

It felt great to work up a sweat! Looking forward to keeping this up the rest of the week.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

34 weeks

Technically I'm 34 weeks and 2 days ... but who's counting?  Oh yeah ME!  At 40 days to go we're getting closer and closer to Baby C's arrival.
This week Baby Center says that baby is the size of a cantaloupe, weighing in at almost 5 pounds.  As baby gets bigger I continue to get bigger too. 
I'm finally over my cold from last week but have not found myself working out lately.  I had a good work out on Saturday, but have not been back since.  I'm looking forward to returning to the YMCA tomorrow during lunch and possibly even going to prenatal yoga tomorrow night.  I want to stay as active as possible until I absolutely can't exercise any more. 
Sleep gets harder and harder to do every night ... in between so many pee breaks and basically never being comfortable, it's impossible to get more than 2-3 hours of consecutive sleep.
I'm back on eating way too many bread products like I was during the 1st trimester.  For some reason Baby C craves bagels and English muffins way too often.  I'm trying to eat as many fruits and vegetables as I can, even if it means topping my sauteed spinach with crumbled bacon.  

Per yesterday's doctor's visit I'm 136 pounds and will have another doctor's appointment on the 27th.  I was a little disappointed that the doctor was on call and missed my appointment but I did get the usual blood pressure check and belly measurement.  Plus I got to listen to Baby C's heartbeat which is always my favorite part.

Here's hoping the next 6 weeks fly by without too much discomfort!

Monday, February 13, 2012


Yesterday for lunch Ryan and I went to Crisp 7th Street Cafe.

Their menu consists of house designed salads, custom salads, sandwiches, soups, and pizzas. I went with creating my usual spring mix salad with mandarin oranges, dried cranberries, cucumbers, walnuts, and cheese as my toppings. On the side I ordered a cup of their butternut squash soup.

Of course I was too full to finish my soup so I brought it home in hopes of finishing it today during lunch.

Is it too late to add a goal for 2012 for me to accomplish? If not I would like to learn and perfect the art of making butternut squash soup. It has by far become my favorite soup during the cold winter months.

Crisp is a great restaurant that Ryan and I frequent quite a bit. If you're ever in the Elizabeth area of Charlotte I highly suggest stopping by. Order the soup if it's available ... Their choices change daily but even if you end up with their chili or tomato soup, you won't regret it!

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Sunday, February 12, 2012

Birthday Re-cap

Ryan and I started off his birthday on Saturday with a work out at the YMCA. We found 2 side by side treadmills and started our cardiovascular exercise. I alternated walking and jogging for 30 minutes. I was able to complete 2.33 miles before heading over to the weights area.

I quickly went through an upper body work out that consisted of 3 shoulder exercises, 1 bicep exercise, and 1 tricep exercise.

After showering it was time to get some food in our bellies! Birthday brunch was had at Terrace Cafe.

Eggs, bacon, hash browns, and a biscuit was all it took to fuel our shopping experience for Baby C at Pottery Barn Kids. We hooked him up with some furniture for the nursery and even bought a couple of fun additions. Exhibit A - Sophie the giraffe

Just when you thought Ryan's birthday was over we head dinner with the gang at Dressler's.

Happy Birthday to the best husband and friend a girl could ask for. Looking forward to many more great birthdays with this man.

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Friday, February 10, 2012

Bagel Craving

It's sad to say that I go to bed thinking about what I want to eat for breakfast the following morning. Last night I laid my head down on the pillow thinking about eating a bagel from Einstein Bagels.
This morning I walked an extra 2 blocks just to satisfy my bagel craving. I ordered an everything bagel with butter, toasted, and added strawberry jelly once I got to the office.

This bagel was everything I hoped it would be and more.
Is it too early to start thinking about lunch? Dinner?
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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A little ME moment

I tore myself from my office long enough to walk over to Starbucks for some hot tea and a sweet treat.

Awake tea with a salted caramel square.

I'm just sitting at a table enjoying my treats while listening to some good music. Why don't I hang out in Starbucks more often? Probably cause I should continue my caffeine strike for another 7 weeks. A little tea never hurt no one ...

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33 weeks

This post comes a bit delayed ... technically 33 weeks was on Sunday, so I'm really 33 weeks and 3 days.  According to my Sprout app I have 46 days to go.  I can start saying things like "Baby C will be here next month."  NEXT MONTH!  Isn't that crazy?

Although this past weekend I had a lot of fun down in Florida for my baby shower (hopefully pictures will be posted soon), I'm currently trying to get over a terrible cold that followed me back up to Charlotte.  I stayed home on Monday from work and the rest definitely helped ... along with lots of liquids. 
This week babycenter.com says baby is the size of a pineapple ... how a pineapple is currently fitting in my body is beyond me. 
It's getting harder to get around and the size increase is definitely showing up more and more.  Walking to and from work isn't as much fun anymore and that's only about 0.5 miles each way.  

I ran 3.3 miles on Saturday and I'm worried that might be one of my last runs.  We'll see though ... I don't want to give up hope yet.  Plus I need to kick this cold before I can get back to exercising.

Ryan continues to make fun of my clumsiness.  I'm constantly underestimating how much room I actually need to get by and end up running into more and more things ... doors, walls, chairs, whatever.

I'm still managing to eat fairly well ... trying to get as many fruits and vegetables into my diet.  Unfortunately the cold kept me eating toast and cereal for 1-2 days straight. 

And that's pretty much it for this week.  We've got a lot to do to get ready for Baby C's arrival so hopefully after celebrating Ryan's birthday this weekend we'll get back to work on setting up the baby room. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Ravenous Pig - review

One of my favorite parts of traveling back to Orlando, Florida is going to the Ravenous Pig gastropub in Winter Park.  Eating their burger was one of my last meals in Florida before making the move up to Charlotte, North Carolina back in 2010 so this restaurant holds a special place in my heart.  Or should I say this burgers holds a special place in my stomach?

On Friday night Ryan and I were joined by my friend Katie and her fiance Chris to dine at this restaurant.  We all ordered the same thing ... the Pub Burger.  Although some might think the $13 price tag is slightly steep for a burger, the high quality product does not disappoint.

Pub Burger    13. 
1855 angus beef, caramelized onion, buttermilk bleu cheese, truffle fries

I ordered my burger medium cooked and it came out juicy and delicious.  I did not add any ketchup or other condiment to the burger because the buttermilk blue cheese that topped the burger gave it enough flavor.
Each fry was dipped in a side of garlic aioli (unpictured since the server had to get me some from the kitchen).  The shoestring french fries are the perfect compliment to this burger.

This is definitely one of the best burgers I have ever had, in any state.  I look forward to many more Florida visits to see my dear friends and to naturally have many more pub burgers.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

left side vs right side

So after almost 33 weeks of being pregnant I'm finally starting to feel some annoyances with pregnancy.  I thought I was doing well with staying positive, but I've finally come to the point where I can't handle one small aspect of pregnancy ... side sleeping.  More importantly left side sleeping.  

The best sleep position during pregnancy is "SOS" (sleep on side). Even better is to sleep on your left side. Sleeping on your left side will increase the amount of blood and nutrients that reach the placenta and your baby. Keep your legs and knees bent and a pillow between your legs.

When I asked the doctor during my appointment this past Monday, if sleeping on the right side would be allowed, she said "I wouldn't if I were you."  This was pretty disheartening since she's a doctor and should know everything.  Except she's young and has never had a baby so does she really know what it feels like to be constrained to only sleeping on one side?
My whole issue with left side sleeping is that I've done it for weeks now and my left side is so incredibly sore.  My neck, shoulder, and chest are all in constant pain, even when I'm not laying down.  I literally wake myself up in the middle of the night in pain from sleeping that way.  I've been trying to alternate between the right and left side to somehow allow myself to get some sleep (in between waking up 2 or 3 times a night to go to the bathroom), and even that isn't enough.  There is still a good portion of the night where I lie in tremendous pain. 

I'm sure I'm making a bigger deal out of this than I should, but like those of you who know me, I get pretty neurotic about certain things and start overly obsessing about things out of my control.  Then I get a hold of the Internet and find articles like this that leave me freaking out even more.

Sleeping on Back or Right Side May Increase Stillbirth Risk - from Medscape Medical News

June 15, 2011 — Compared with pregnant women who sleep on their left side, those who sleep on their back may have double the risk of delivering a stillborn baby, and those who sleep on their right side also may have an increased risk, according to a new study.

Maybe I should stop my researching online and focus on staying positive.  I'm sure I'll bombard all moms at my baby shower this weekend to ask how they slept during their last trimester. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

quick lunch work out

After not working out since my run on Saturday I knew I should probably head back to the YMCA today.  Unfortunately all of the treadmills were taken so I was forced to do some cycling on a seated bicycle.
I had it on level 5 and completed 3.25 miles in 18 minutes.  Once I was finished with my cardio I headed to the weights area to do a quick bicep work out.
  • 3 sets of 12 reps bicep curls using a pair of 5 pound weights
  • 3 sets of 12 reps hammerhead curls using a pair of 5 pound weights
I quickly changed back into my "normal" clothes and dashed to Jimmy John's to pick up some food before heading back to the office.  
I went with their "vegetarian" sandwich ... avocado spread, provolone cheese, cucumbers, lettuce, mayo, NO sprouts, NO tomatoes, ADD hot peppers.  I haven't had one of their sandwiches in a while and it was definitely delicious.  I love their bread!! Their sandwiches tend to be a bit pricier than Subway (my total today was $5.14 instead of my usual $3.25 veggie sandwich), but are 2 inches larger and are, in my opinion, better quality.