Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Warm Chocolate Melting Cake Recipe

Due to popular demand, based on my post about our cruise last fall, I am posting the infamous recipe that I mentioned in that blog. Yes, this is the OFFICIAL chocolate melting cake recipe from Carnival Cruise lines, handed to me by our waiter after I requested it one night at dinner.

I have not yet tried to make it yet, so I can't promise how it will turn out. One thing to note, however is that the recipe is measured in grams & the temps are in celsius... so you will have to find a way to translate it into tablespoons/cups, etc. That, I don't have for you....

Anyway, here it is...


Yields - 10 portions

375 g Dark Chocolate
375 g Butter
8 ea Egg Yolk
7 ea Whole Egg
250 g Sugar
170 g Flour

- Melt the chocolate and the butter together until 64 degrees celcius

- Blend the egg yolks, whole eggs and the sugar together, then add the butter-chocolate mixture

- Add the flour

- Put it in 10 forms (prepare with butter and flour) and leave it for one day in the fridge

- Bake directly in the oven at 200 degrees celcius for 8 minutes

That's it! If someone makes it, please let me know how to translate all of the measurements/temps. That's been what has mainly holding us up from making it (well, and the fact that we don't need that many servings). an addendum (added 10/1/15)....if you have landed on my blog and want to follow my latest adventures, please hop over my NEW and consistently updated blog - Coach Carrie -  I would LOVE to welcome you to my new home!!!!

...newest note 12/21/16

This page, and the one I linked you to last year is no longer in use (I mean, I guess you already knew that...) because...


Follow me NOW at

Or let's connect on Facebook through my page -

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

It's Official - I'm Old

So, I know that I haven't posted a blog here in awhile. Partly because of being busy, partly because of sheer tiredness. Within the past week I am barely home from work and my fatigue kicks in and I'm asleep in bed by like 8:30. I did read that being tired kicks in again in the third trimester, and I am 26 weeks along, so that does make some degree of sense.

But, to address my title, I have officially turned the big 3-0. It happened rather peacefully, without major depression or screaming on my part. I always thought that I would be depressed leaving my 20's... and I have to say starting around my 27th birthday I got more and more worried and dread kind of kicked in each year. Last year was admittedly a little rough. But this year? Not so much. I think it's because I have so much else going on in my life right now.

Anyway, I celebrated the best way I could think of as a pregnant woman. With breakfast at the best pancake house around with my mother and grandmother, and then a massage and a manicure, followed up by dinner at The Cheesecake Factory. My best friend Tina, and her hubby and son came along (well not for the spa day, but everything else), and it made for a pretty good time. Tina also proved invaluable... as the mother to a 1 year old, she helped me finish my registry at Babies R Us. I can't tell you how much of a relief it was to walk around the store with her and my scanner.....she would tell me what I needed and I would add it. I mean, I honestly had no idea how important a bouncy seat or a play gym were, but now I do!

But beyond all the day itself... turning 30 has made me reflect on my life. Around New Year's, I started to look back at the past decade. So much has changed!

I turned 20 while at Butler, and actually while just beginning to date Steve (we got together early 2nd semester my sophmore year). It's crazy to think we've been together to what equates to a 3rd of my life! Back then I was worried about what my major would be and scoring A's in my classes. And, taking some time out for a few memorable parties. Tina roomed with me back then at the house, and probably could share a few stories :).

From there I graduated with a t-comm degree... kind of a waste, really. I never really scored a t-comm job, even though I did have my dream internship at WISH-TV. In hindsight I should have gotten some sort of business degree. But, it's not like I didn't have my fair share of different jobs. I started out working within an ad agency.... moving on to do marketing for a Papa John's franchise. From there I had a stint in corporate real estate. And, today I manage an apartment complex. Yeah, I guess I've kind of become a jack of all trades, really. In some ways I envy people like Steve who found what they had a passion for and have stuck with it... I think I'm just a square peg when it comes to careers. In some ways, I think us creative types never truly fit into the business world.

But beyond my jobs, I married my wonderful husband Steve in 2002. We became homeowners in 2004. We've got 2 great pooches, great families and friends, and are well on our way to creating our own family.... the third member will arrive sometime in late April/early May :). And, we've had the opportunity to take some amazing trips and live a pretty comfortable life.

I don't mean these statements to come off as arrogant or anything, but I have to say that I am really happy with the way my life has gone so far. Yes, we had some lean times over the past 10 years, but overall we've been really lucky. Maybe that's why turning 30 hasn't been so bad thus far....

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Brett's Baby Booty

He's not even out of the womb yet, but Brett has managed to collect some pretty nice swag so far...

Included in this collection are:

1. a bib from our trip to Cozumel

2. a White Sox teddy bear bought by Steve's parents (we went to a White Sox game the night we found out we were pregnant)

3. Bulldog booties and a bib from Brett's first Butler basketball game two weeks ago (although I don't know that he'll remember it all that well)

4. misc. onesies/shoes/bibs from family and friends

Whew... and he's still got 15 weeks go to!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Celebrity Baby Boom

Okay, I'll admit I'm a bit of a celebrity junkie. I subscribe to People and I catch Extra every night (I mean, what would I do without my daily report of Brit watch?). I love this stuff and I always have. Maybe it's the fact that I'll never have the life of these beautiful and famous people, and I can live interveniously through them. Hard to say for sure, but I am indeed intrigued.

Well, I know that a couple of years ago Angelina had Shiloh and Katie had Suri and Britney... well, those poor poor children. Anyway, it's not that Hollywood hasn't had it's share of famous pregnancies lately... but is it just me or is EVERYONE in Hollywood pregnant now?

See, I am looking at it like this... have you ever bought a new car, and as soon as you drove off the lot it seems like everyone on the road drives your new car as well? Yeah. So, I can't decide if it is because I am fully obsessed and enraputed in my pregnancy that I am noticing this or if it is really true.

I have to admit that I was glued to my tv/internet this past weekend to see if they announced when Nicole and Christina had their babies... and what they delivered (Christina had a boy too, yay!). It's like suddenly I can relate to these people on a whole new level. When I got my issue of Marie Claire featuring Christina, I was sucked into the article. So many of her feelings (fears and excitment) I shared as well.

And, let's not forget Halle (who announced her pregnancy right after I found out I was pregnant). Halle with the perfect figure... it secretly gives me pleasure to see that as her pregnancy is progressing, her thighs are expanding like any normal person. Don't get me wrong, I love Halle Berry, but I feel like this is something that I can relate to her about. Plus, our due dates are close...

And then you have JLo (who I've never been a huge fan of), but I somehow care about her pregnancy.. and she's due on my birthday! And now we can add to the list - Jessica Alba (who might be due a little bit later than me), Nicole Kidman, Giada, even Britney's little sis, etc. etc..... and we can't forget the guys... even bachelor Matthew McConahay has a pregnant girlfriend.

So, hey, if nothing else, I guess it's "en vogue" to have a baby these days.... and I'm sure they are all dealing with backaches and heartburn just like me.

Just an observation from my own little pregnant corner of the world today.

Monday, January 14, 2008

24 Weeks

It looks like I'm hiding a bowling ball. 'Nuff said.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Evolution of a Nursery - alternatively titled "How I Spent My Weekend"

Well, to pick up where my last blog left off, we finally did make it back to Menard's Saturday morning (I secretly wondered if anyone recognized me as the freak from the night before on the security cameras), and successfully picked up the paint and supplies to do the nursery.

Over the past week we've sort of shuffled furniture around, thanks a lot in part to Steve's brother who helped with the heavy lifting last weekend. Now our computer desk is smack on top of our t.v. and treadmill. God help us if we have any more kids in this house!

So, we were able to start the project. Let's look back at the mess from where we started (posting this picture secretly gives me a sense of accomplishment :))...

Steve would not allow me to paint (because of the fumes), and I was really kind of bummed about that because I really enjoy painting, but I respect his viewpoint, as I don't want to expose Brett to that. So, I helped with all the prep (taping, drop clothes).. and snapped some "action" shots of Steve as Ty Pennington...

Check out that painting technique...

Can't you see why I love this man...

Well, that's where we had to stop on Saturday, because The Packers conveniently decided to cut our plans short by playing a game of football (sigh).

So, this morning we touched up and put up the border... this I could definitely help with. And, I have learned how much of a pain in the a** it is to put up wallpaper border. Somehow we managed to get through this while still on good speaking terms...

I about lost it when I realized that we were like 12 inches short on our border. Seriously! And, I had ordered this online, so it's not like we could run out and get some more (plus I really didn't want to spend $20-$30 extra for a whole new roll). So, we worked out a green accent wall.

In the end, it turned out really well.....

We still have to assemble the crib and register for stuff... but we have the hardest part of getting the nursery together done (and done in time so that The Colts could appear on our television for Steve... I could rant and rant about how football ruins my weekend every week, but I'll save that for another time). Note: this picture was taken before we loaded the leopard print chez lounge back in the room. I still can't get rid of this thing, and I don't have a pickup truck to take it away...does anyone want this thing? I would love to hang on to it if we had room because it is so comfortable, but our house is already bursting at the seams (sigh).

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Tums are bad. Very Bad.

Last night seemed to start innocently enough. I was basking in the glory of a Friday after work, watching last night’s Grey’s Anatomy on tivo, waiting for my husband to get home from Muncie. As I was sprawled on the couch, I noticed a relatively new pregnancy annoyance beginning to make itself known. Heartburn. It’s only been within the past 2-3 weeks that I’ve started to have this problem, and I’ve not done anything about it thus far.

Well, Steve got home and we decided to go to Menards to get paint for Brett’s room, as well as a new showerhead, and then go to dinner. Because of my heartburn I wasn’t feeling particularly hungry. So, Steve grabbed some generic Tums (again on my list of “acceptable” medications – Tums IS okay) and we were on our way. While leaving the driveway I took 3 of these….I guess they were tropical flavored? I didn’t care, as long as they got rid of the problem. Menards is all of 5 minutes from our house – and as we pulled into the parking lot, suddenly my tounge started tingling and feeling itchy, as did my scalp and my back and my heart started to race. I really didn’t know what the heck was happening to me.

We went into the store and I told Steve I wasn’t feeling well, and my breaths became a little shorter and I started coughing. He ran out to the car to grab a bottle of water. I drank it and we started to walk around the store. All the time I was not feeling well. While trying to locate the showerheads, we ended up in the bath area with lots of mirrors. I gasped when I looked at myself. I had welts forming on my chin and my neck and my lips were swollen. Plus I was itching like crazy, and there wasn’t anything to do about it. I realize now that I must have looked like a complete crazy person – I have no idea what the shoppers thought of me. Steve said the look on my face was of desperation. My breathing was getting shorter and shorter, so I told him to call my mother (yes, I still call my mother when I’m not feeling well – after all she was a nurse!). She said I was having an allergic reaction and I needed to take some Benadryl ASAP and if it didn’t improve to get to the emergency room.

So we rushed back home – I must have been freaking Steve out because I was wheezing in the car, I had trouble taking a complete breath. Finally I took the Benadryl and laid on my bed. I was able to see the mess of welts that had formed on my trunk and legs. I looked like a freak. Steve got me a VERY COLD washcloth (I must emphasize this because he hadn’t totally wrung it out and it dripped all over me at first). I put it on my face and we sat there for about 10 minutes. Finally, things started to get a little better. I still had trouble talking because of the breathing. I decided to call my mom back because now I was worried about how this may have affected the baby. When I told her that I had also formed welts and my lips were swollen, she told me to go to the emergency room anyway to make sure everything was okay.

We get back into the car, now 8:15 (poor Steve still hadn’t had anything to eat) and headed to the hospital. Luckily I had gradually started feeling better, so I was able to breathe now. Once we got there, they checked us in (I love how the first question they ask you is to see your insurance card – how lovely), we went to a room. I was a little afraid I’d be trumped by gunshot victims and the like, but luckily it wasn’t busy. A doctor checked me out and told me to take Claritin for the next week. He didn’t even check out the baby. He was sure it was okay. Seriously? And we are paying for the ER? Well, a nurse did come in afterwards and she was very friendly and went ahead and let us listen to the heartbeat. Brett was fine. At this point, my parents had shown up too… I had no idea they were coming. What a night!

So, we left (I had NO idea how much that hospital visit cost – and I’m afraid to see the bill) and finally got dinner around 9:30. At that point, the Benadryl had made me so sleepy I almost fell asleep in my food.

We got home and I went to bed immediately.

NOT how I had planned to spend last night. At all! an addendum (added 10/1/15)....if you have landed on my blog and want to follow my latest adventures, please hop over my NEW and consistently updated blog - Coach Carrie -  I would LOVE to welcome you to my new home!!!!

...newest note 12/21/16

This page, and the one I linked you to last year is no longer in use (I mean, I guess you already knew that...) because...


Follow me NOW at

Or let's connect on Facebook through my page -

See you over there, friends!

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Thursday, January 3, 2008

The Blair Witch Nursery Project

Buying stuff is a lot more fun than putting it together.

So, Steve and I have sorta been easing our way into the monstrosity that is Babies R Us. It’s frightening to new parents. Things like “Travel Systems” and “Pack & Plays” are foreign to our ears. Plus, add in the fact that there is a whole AISLE dedicated to each of these things, causing you to pick one out of like 50 and wondering if your choice is going to make or break your kid. We’ve taken a few brief strolls through the store – absorbing as much as we could without breaking into a cold sweat, gradually learning about all of these crazy contraptions that are an absolute “must” for kids.

While we have miles to go on the rest of the accessories that come with baby, we were pretty easily able to decide on a nursery. We found a crib that we liked right away (see below), with changing table.

Okay, check that off the list. We’d also had a few ideas of what themes we would like to decorate with. As I had mentioned in an earlier blog, we decided on the “B is for Bear” (and for “Brett”, you know!) theme. Below is the gorgeous perfect design of what the theme should look like in an ideal nursery. This picture is how they market the set.

So now with these lofty expectations of how you are SUPPOSED to decorate your nursery, we have begun the journey.

With some generous Christmas dough, we decided to go ahead and purchase everything, knowing that it would take 2 weeks to come in (and wanting to make sure we’d get what we want in case it would get discontinued). No problem. We’d be home, have a chance to clear out the room and voila – a nursery would suddenly appear. Not so much. While in Chicago, on New Year’s Eve, we get the call that our order is ready for pick-up. Seriously? Wow. Well, it worked out that my parents would be able to help us on New Year’s Day. So, we arrive in Indy around 3:00, snow and all and meet my parents at the store.

After finding a way to fit everything into my dad’s truck (and yes, the furniture looks smaller in the store), we made our way home, and somehow Steve and my parents were able to lug up this dresser and crib into the second bedroom. Now – keep in mind that this second bedroom has been used for an office. We still have the computer desk, bookcase, etc. filling up this room. I had to take a picture so you can see what we are up against. Behold the office with the changing table smack in the middle and the unassembled crib and mattress in the background (and YES, that is a clothes drying rack to the left… we also dry our laundry in this room).

So, yes, it was fun picking out but I am dreading getting this all together. I think we have a game plan. It’s just a matter of getting it done. (After we of course paint the room and put up the decorative wall border :) ). And, I’d better take shloads of pictures of this beautiful room when we are done, because I have a sinking feeling that Brett will never even remember what it looked like when all is said and done.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Holidays and Pregnancy Don't Mix

No, they don’t.

So, this year Christmas definitely felt different (and I don’t mean Brett’s wind-sprints in my belly). I don’t know, it was more – low key? First of all, I usually try to look nice for family get-togethers. This year, it was enough to put make-up on. Seriously. When you see your face expanding in the mirror it’s hard to feel pretty. I don’t mean to come off sounding vain, but yeah.

Anyway, and I didn’t really “feel” like doing a lot of Christmasy things this year. We did bake all 900 cookies a couple of weeks ago, which was a little more fun than I’d anticipated, but I didn’t even really want to have Christmas. Christmas Day, actually, I woke up feeling incredibly depressed. I didn’t even get out of my pajamas until it was almost time to leave. I didn’t even want to leave the house. I am not sure exactly why I felt that way, but I did. I think part of it was finding out the day before that my entire family had plans that did not include me on my 30th birthday. Yeah, that was rough. I had been anticipating this birthday for a couple of years now, always knowing it would fall on a Saturday and secretly hoping someone would throw me a big party. Not happening this year, at all (but on a side note, my girlfriend Tina and her hubby Rick are now coming down that weekend – and Tina and I are going to do a spa day which I am looking forward to). I think that was part of it, and then my hormones have been all over the board. I actually started crying uncontrollably on the way to Christmas at my brother’s house. People passing by in cars probably thought someone had died. I hardly ever cry, so this was pretty crazy. I don’t know… I just ended up feeling so incredibly sad.

Beyond that, we drove to Chicago for Steve’s family Christmas this past weekend. Again, I just wanted to stay in and not venture out. I almost told Steve to just go without me, picturing not getting out of bed for like 3 days. We did go and it was nice, but depending on my mood I am extravertedly comfortable or a total introvert. I was in complete introvert mode all weekend and when I feel that way, usually a stiff drink will bring me out of my shell. Fat chance this Christmas! Don’t get me wrong, everyone was nice and all, but I just couldn’t relax. I was so exhausted from sheer tiredness as well as mingling that I ended up going to bed pretty early.

It didn’t help also that the next day we opened presents and my in-laws were clicking pictures. I understand that they want to record memories, I do. But, as someone who usually works really hard to maintain their figure (non-pregnant Carrie would run 3-5 miles a day), it is really hard that I am blowing up like a whale. I know, the vanity thing again makes me sound horrible, but I am very sensitive about pictures right now. I have a few taken of me where I can stand to the side and show my belly, but to look at me facing forward with my full whale-like girth is another story. I politely asked not to have my picture taken but I was not that lucky. To my horror, I saw while looking through them that I have a bit of a double-chin. I have NEVER had a double chin in my life before. That made me almost cry. Now the double chin will be displayed for all in the digital picture frame (sigh).

My mood did perk up a little bit when we got together with Rick & Tina for New Year’s. They have a little boy, Evan, and it was fun to see how he is growing and what he’s up to. I felt like I learned a little bit about having my own little man. And, I am starting to see the light at the end of this pregnant tunnel….