It’s August.

You know what that means?  Next comes September, which means Fall, which means less sweating and more hot drinks and vest wearing and long sleeves and Notre Dame football.  It is my favorite time of year!

We also have many things keeping us busy through the autumn, like my birthday late in August, our second anniversary in September, Tim’s birthday in October, and then maternity leave mid-November.  It is going to be the best Fall ever.  I am so excited!  Even more freakishly excited than I normally am, since I love the holiday season to begin with and this year we look forward to a baby shower and Log and Vanessa’s wedding reception!  If you follow me on Pinterest, you know I am already on the holiday decorating bandwagon.  I didn’t start yet, just gathering ideas.  I’m not that much of a freak.  Slash we watched Miracle on 34th Street last night and I have been listening to holiday tunes for months.  Loooove iiiiit!

Forgive the infrequent posts.  We just aren’t doing much these days.  It’s awesome!  We did rearrange the house, which I forgot to capture in a photo.  We went to Alexandria last weekend to surprise my Mom for her birthday and see my Dad after his brief hospital stay (don’t worry–everything checked out fine.)  It was nice to have everyone in one spot, despite the quick turn around!  This weekend we are off to Onarga to celebrate Tim’s friend Matt’s wedding to the darling Rena.  Congratulations to those two!

We also are continuing to work on the nursery… without much visual difference at this point.  But how cute are those tiny baby clothes??

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We also have been doing some prep work for FINALLY getting some art on these naked walls.  So far, it has hardly made it past this stage:

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If you plan to visit ever, you will be glad to know we got a new, superbly comfortable bed for the loft!  We also enlisted a new frame since it allows us to make a daybed-feeling space which is more suitable for an office slash guest space.  If we hadn’t just bought a new mattress, I would totally be sleeping up there.  Sorry, Timmy.  It is a divine bed!  If you didn’t want to come visit before, you so do now.  I mean it.  Nevermind the trashbags of various clothing articles under the bed that haven’t been stored properly yet.

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Today, I successfully washed all of our pillows (random) and made Banana Walnut Muffins with espresso and a few chocolate chips for good measure.  They turned out way better than last time, and last time I obviously ate them all so they couldn’t have been too bad.  I used high protein flour and greek yogurt, so these fellows have a wicked protein punch, which my body needs dearly these days.

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(The recipe can be found here http://www.chow.com/recipes/12073-espresso-banana-muffins)

Makes: 12 muffins

This decadent espresso-flecked morning muffin with a big, walnut-crusted top is everything a muffin should be. If you need more than espresso to lure you out of bed, stir in some chocolate chunks.

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups white whole-wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon fine espresso powder
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup natural cane sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas (about 3 large bananas)
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Heat the oven to 375°F, position the racks low in the oven, and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, 3/4 cup of the walnuts, and the espresso powder in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. In a separate large bowl or a stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar and then the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the vanilla, yogurt, and mashed bananas, then briefly and gently mix in the dry ingredients; overmixing will result in tough muffins.
  4. Spoon into the prepared muffin tin (an ice-cream scoop works well), top with the remaining 1/2 cup walnuts, and bake until golden, about 25 mintues. Fill the cups two-thirds full for regular muffins or to the brim for a big-topped version. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

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