Thanksgiving 2016

This year for Thanksgiving we celebrated by going out for brunch, and for dinner we celebrated at our house with our family and my mom and sister. My dad was at work, as it's one of Cafe Renaissance's busiest days of the year. We missed him and also hubby's parents who were there in spirit. 

Because I'm pregnant I wanted to make Thanksgiving as low key and simple as possible. No fancy feast for a ton of guests, and no killing myself to make the house look perfect. These days, being in the third trimester, AND running around after two toddlers all day make me feel like a zombie by the time 6pm rolls around. 

However I did last minute throw together a pretty Thanksgiving tablescape, and I made a DELICIOUS turkey. This year I made the turkey a bit different and made a CROCKPOT TURKEY! I honestly had no idea how it would turn out but oh my goodness it was really good and it's something that I'll be making on the regular from now on as it was super easy and quick to prep. I'll post the recipe another time though. The kids ate so much turkey that I literally was worried they might explode if they ate any more, and hubby begged me to make this ALL the time as he loved it as well. I have to admit, I've always liked the look of a whole turkey better, but cooking it in the crockpot tasted way better, and it was definitely easier and SO flavorful and juicy. 

The kids had such a great day. They loved eating brunch at the Marriott, and afterwards ran around the hotel lobby making friends with some Indian kids who were there for an Indian wedding. They were so fascinated with all their pretty traditional clothing. For dinner they were ecstatic to see grandma and their auntie, and by the time the night was over they were bawling their eyes out and desperately trying to postpone bedtime. They are the cutest. I am so thankful for my family. 

Thanksgiving tablescapes

pomegranate

kids thanksgiving table tablescape toddlers

Thanksgiving Westfields Marriott Fairfax Dining Room

Thanksgiving brunch

Caspian Rahmanian

toddler thanksgiving crafts

crockpot turkey recipe

thanksgiving desserts tablescape pictures photos

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Pregnancy Updates

I found out I was pregnant with baby #3 on Father's Day during the summer. What a fantastic Father's Day present to hubby! I AM SO EXCITED that I don't know what to do with myself. I have already planned out Valentino and Caspian's lives, now I'm working on planning out this little one's life. I have spread sheets done, activities and routines planned, and made ready a list of acceptable colleges. Tiger mom you have nothing on me. 

If pregnancy wasn't really hard on me (thanks mom, for those HORRIBLE pregnancy genes!) then I would have considered having maybe nine kids? ten? Ok jk. I really love kids though. I feel like they are little presents, wrapped in a blanket with cute little noses and chubby little cheeks. They melt my heart. Three kids who are three and under? No big deal. I got this $h!t  I thrive on routines and structure and organizing my life so that we have smooth sailing. But once a newborn shows up everything is just chaos! It's okay though, as the rough parts only last three months.

When I found out that I was pregnant I was in the state of Ketosis and on the Ketogenic diet, which I had done for over a year and had become a lifestyle. Upon finding out, I immediately stopped the diet and introduced carbs back into my diet. Eating carbs suddenly after refraining from them for over a year really gave my body a shock. That in addition to first trimester pregnancy symptoms really knocked me out for like 4 months! At first I thought, I will probably only eat healthy carbs like whole grains and fruit. That idea lasted for like two days, and then saltine crackers, plain rice and ginger ale became my best friends. 

Then I gained a lot of weight. This didn't surprise me, as most people who stop this diet gain all their weight and then some back. I'm not worried about it one bit though, because I know how to lose it all, and I know I will lose it all. So for now I can have my cake and eat it too. What a great perk of pregnancy! On the downside, however, I am already up 50 pounds and not even in the third trimester. Ok, maybe I need to back off of that cake. I can't help it though, it's what the BABY wants! 

As I'm easing my way into the third trimester I have been resting a lot and enjoying my time with my two boys until baby #3 arrives. I have been totally spoiled as hubby is now in charge of everything that I used to be in charge of. I am lucky that I don't have to work while pregnant either, and that the kids attend a fantastic montessori toddler program every day for 4 hours. The kids also do a great job of enternaining themselves and playing with each other. I love that they are so close in age, my little Irish twins.

I cannot wait to add baby #3 to the mix. Life will definitely be a lot more hectic, crazy and busy! I'm ready to say goodbye to sleep AGAIN :) Although pregnancy takes a toll on me and I feel like I have to take a year off life, what's a year of hardship compared to a lifetime of joy and happiness? Life is seriously such a gift and I'm really thankful to be blessed with this baby #3.

Thanksgiving Memories

Are any of you as excited as I am about Thanksgiving coming up so soon? I CANNOT WAIT. Especially since I am pregnant. I appreciate it and enjoy it way more while being pregnant, because I can eat for two! Also, some of my strongest cravings are for a full and hearty thanksgiving dinner. The last time I was pregnant, I had my mom cook an entire thanksgiving feast for breakfast, in the middle of July! Needless to say, I was in heaven. 

This has also got to be one of my kids's favorite holidays because boy do they love to EAT! Valentino eats turkey like he's eating cake. He's so funny. I'm not sure they understand much about the whole "being thankful" part of Thanksgiving, but that will come. 

thanksgiving feast at montessori school

Here are some of our past Thanksgivings:

This one was last year..... I can't get over how hot hubby looks here, and how dapper the kids look! I have some good looking boys :)

thanksgiving brunch at marriot westfields va

And here's the year before, when I was pregnant with Caspian:

thanksgiving tablescape

thanksgiving tablescapes

And here's us celebrating Thanksgiving before we had any kids! I can't believe we were THAT thin! Ha ha.

thanksgiving tablescapes

thanksgiving tablescapes

thanksgiving tablescapes

Wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving! 

Halloween 2016 Family Fun

Happy Halloween everyone! This year we had a fun and busy few weeks. We attended all kinds of Halloween and Fall festival events. 

Can you guess what we were?

dr seuss family halloween costumes

Dr. Seuss characters! The kids were thing 1 and thing 2. I was also thing 1 and thing 2 (my unborn baby was thing 2) and hubby was the cat in the hat! My sister Sara was the grinch, and my mom was the goldfish. 

I'm kind of a Halloween nut. I got hubby to decorate the outside of our house, and the kids were crazy about it. Valentino loves his pumpkins. He points at each and every single one and says "bumpkin" over and over again. Caspian likes to bite on the pumpkins, so we have to keep them away from him. 

family outdoor halloween decorations mickey mouse inflatable

outdoor halloween decorations kids toddlers inflatables pumpkins

outdoor decorations inflatable halloween scarecrows pumpkins

outdoor halloween decoration at night

The kids's school and our neighborhood both had Halloween events. The kids were over the moon and had tons of fun. Our neighborhood event had farm animals, pony rides, bouncy castles and the works!

thing 1 and thing 2 halloween costumes

halloween festival northern va montessori school

thing 1 and thing 2 toddler costumes

thing 1 and thing 2 toddler costumes diy halloween

thing 1 thing 2 toddler halloween costumes diy

So we also had a little family get together and ate cake and carved pumpkins! 

dr. seuss halloween family charachters goldfish grinch cat in the hat

Can you tell I love glitter??

glittery pumpkin halloween decoration

halloween tablescape cakes and cupcakes

halloween pumpkin cake halloween tablescape

pumpkin carving party

I love watching hubby as he concentrates. Check out his and my sisters faces..... this is some serious stuff! so funny.

thing 1 and thing 2 pregnancy halloween costume

Wishing you all a very safe and happy halloween! 

Summer time picnic!

Why does summer always fly by so fast? I felt like it was just yesterday when I was planning all these fantastic and fun activities for the kids, and then BAM, school starts, we are back to our super structured routines, and that doesn't leave time for much fun. Because Caspian has started school (he's in the same toddler montessori program as Valentino now), he has to now skip his morning nap that he is used to taking around 11am. This means that we have to start getting ready for bed now every night at 6pm so the kids can be in bed by 7! Before having kids I would think parents who put their kids to bed this early were nuts. I totally get it now. 

I wish the summer lasted a little longer and we had more time to go on family outings. The kids still had a really good time, doing things like attending birthday parties, going to the neighborhood playground and pool, and family picnics!

Now time to plan for fall activities! 

Here are some pics of a family picnic we had on father's day. This was the first time we realized that Valentino is afraid of balloons. He thinks they are alive and gets scared when they fly up. He is hilarious. 

You can also check out the kids's blog entries on their summer:

http://www.valentinorahmanian.com/valentinorahmanian.com/food-prep-and-eating/

http://www.valentinorahmanian.com/valentinorahmanian.com/summer-school/

http://www.valentinorahmanian.com/valentinorahmanian.com/water-days-and-birthdays/

http://www.valentinorahmanian.com/valentinorahmanian.com/summer-2016/

http://www.valentinorahmanian.com/valentinorahmanian.com/making-messes/

http://www.caspianrahmanian.com/caspianrahmanian.com/summer-time/

summer toddler picnic ideas

summer picnic spread ideas

summer toddler picnic ideas picnic table spread

summer picnic ideas table spread

valentino rahmanian toddler picnic ideas