25 Weeks

How far along? 25 weeks, 5 days 
Baby Size: 1.5 pounds and 13.5 inches long. (That's a quarter pound and an inch bigger than last week!)
Total weight gain: 15 pounds
Maternity clothes? Still a mix.
Stretch marks? No, but my tummy has been pretty itchy lately. 
Sleep: Some nights I've had a hard time getting comfortable. I'm so glad we got that body pillow a couple months ago! 
Best moment(s) this week: Lots of time cooking and trying new recipes and date night out at a local Mexican restaurant.
Miss Anything? Sushi.
Movement: Friday morning I felt hiccups for the first time! 
Food cravings: Anything with a lot of flavor. Bland foods sound awful right now.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not a thing!
Gender: Girl :)
Labor Signs: No.
Symptoms: Braxton Hicks contractions and a growing belly!
Belly Button in or out? Still in.
Wedding rings on or off? On. 
Mood: I've been really eager to start getting the nursery ready. We found a couple of cribs we liked that were out of stock, but we have a different one on the radar now.
Looking forward to: Another road trip next week! This one will be shorter though. We're heading to Virginia for a few days to see Matt's family!

Hope everyone has a lovely weekend! 
We'll be staying inside as much as possible since it's supposed to be 106 degrees today!

+, Lauren Aiken


{DIY} Framed Fabric

Happy Friday! 

If you're looking for a simple way to add some color and design to your decor, framing fabric is an inexpensive easy way to do just that!

Inspired by this picture below, I decided to frame a little panel for our living room. We have a huge sectional couch spanning the length of an entire (blank) wall. We have some pretty sizeable shelves to hang also so I chose an 18" x 24" frame.


{DIY} Framed Fabric

1. Choose some fabric and a frame. The only other things you'll need are a pair of scissors and an iron! 

2. Trim the fabric down to just an inch or so past the frame.

3. Iron the fabric. (I actually did this after trimming, but it would probably be a good idea to do so beforehand.)

4. Fold the fabric over the cardboard and secure into frame. You can see that I didn't trim down the longer sides. I just did this so I can shift the fabric to showcase a different part of the pattern later. If you have a smaller print, this wouldn't be necessary.

5. Then put it on display! That's all there is to it!

Tip: Check JoAnn's frequently to get these items on sale. Last week, frames were 40% off and all home decor fabric was 50% off!

+, Lauren Aiken


{Baked} Falafel

Falafel is one of those foods that I crave (and not just when I'm pregnant!). When we lived in Seattle, nearly every week we would go to Bastille for happy hour. This place became dear to us. It was our first date spot in Seattle, and it was there that we found out we were having a baby girl (which you can read about here)! I always ordered falafel. Each season it was a little different since they grew their veggies on the roof - but it was always delicious.

I made falafel for the first time last night, and it was super easy! It just might become a staple meal in this household since Matt loves it too. My recipe is adapted from Honey What's Cooking? and the tzatziki I made is from this recipe.

{Baked} Falafel 
Baked at 400 degrees F for 20-25 min.
Makes approximately 15 balls (~4 servings)


For Falafel:
1 15 oz can chickpeas
1 small onion
1 large handful of parsley
1 small handful of cilantro
3 cloves of garlic
1 egg
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp chili powder (I also added a dash of cayenne pepper)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp EVOO
1/4 c flour

For sandwiches:
pita or flat bread

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Put all falafel ingredients into a food processor.

3. Pulse until combined and it looks like this.

4. Drop by spoonful onto a parchment lined baking sheet. 

5. Bake until lightly golden and crisp to the touch (20-25 minutes).

6. Prepare sandwich. I spread a little red pepper hummus on flatbread, sprinkled some greens and chopped tomatoes, then placed the falafel and poured tzatziki on top. However, the photo from Bastille above is caramelized onions and pickled purple cabbage. Basically, you can prepare your sandwich however you want!

A note on tzatziki: You can buy tzatziki at the store, but it is super simple to make! Just mix together Greek yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, EVOO, and shredded cucumber. I sort of followed this recipe.

Hope you enjoy this tasty meal as much as we do!
+, Lauren Aiken


Silly Goose

Remember back in this post where I doted on all of the amazing food in Seattle? Well, I'm happy to report that good food does exist in Nashville!! Saturday night we decided to try a restaurant in East Nashville, the 'hipster' area of Nashville with lots of character. As we drove through the neighborhood, it reminded me a little bit of Seattle - only hot and sunny. What could be better?? 

We tried a restaurant called the Silly Goose, and it was delicious. We sat at a large rectangular table and met two different couples next to us during our time there. The first couple was also expecting (their second child), and the second couple was from Illinois just passing through Nashville for the night on their way to Savanna, Georgia for vacation. It was fun to be in a public place and actually talk to people again (not many people are very chatty in Seattle unless you know them). 

Of course I took my camera along to practice my photography skills. I still have a lot to learn. So here are my unedited photos, only the last one is an iphone pic.

If you live in Nashville or ever visit, you should check out SG!

+, Lauren Aiken


24 weeks

How far along? 24 weeks, 6 days 
Baby Size: about 1.25 pounds and 12.5 inches long!
Total weight gain: 13 pounds
Maternity clothes? I think I need to retire my jeans for awhile, though I can still get by with some regular shorts and capris. I purchased a few more maternity items while my family was in town from Motherhood Maternity so now I think I'm set for the next few months.
Stretch marks? Not yet, but my tummy still has a lot of growing to do..
Sleep: Most nights I sleep like a rock. Twice this week I didn't even wake up once! However, there are other nights   that I have woken up for an hour or so.
Best moment(s) this week: Spending lots of time with Mackenzie while Matt was out of town, picking Matt up from the airport Friday night, and trying out a new restaurant for date night last night! Also, (technically week 23) a good experience with my new midwife at Vanderbilt and news that Baby A is growing right on track.
Miss Anything? Our favorite Seattle restaurant, Bastille. I always get their falafel so I'm planning to make it this week. I've never made it before so if you have a good recipe please send it my way
Movement: She's still moving quite a bit! I haven't really detected any patterns, other than I can usually feel it most when I am still.
Food cravings: Sweets, pineapple, and the cucumber dill salad I keep mentioning always hits the spot.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Thankfully not!
Gender: Girl.
Labor Signs: I think I've had a few Braxton Hick's contractions (though these are not true labor contractions). My lower stomach will get very hard, and I thought it was the baby moving at first, but I think it's really these 'practice' contractions.
Symptoms: I have only had a few itchy bumps but nothing like that rash a couple weeks ago! With the hot days this week my hands have been a bit swollen.
Belly Button in or out? In. I think I have a few weeks to go until it's flat.
Wedding rings on or off? On, except for one night this week.
Mood: Excited and very eager to start preparing Baby A's nursery!
Looking forward to: A pretty low key week this week :).

Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend!

+, Lauren Aiken



Happy Friday! Does anyone else struggle with coming up with quick, delicious, and nutritious lunches? I am always on the lookout for new recipes, especially now that I'm able to pack lunches for Matt to take to work. 

Last week we tried curried chicken salad on wheat pitas. It's packed with flavor (you have to like curry), and you can make it ahead and assemble right before serving. 

I could eat some kind of salad with every meal, especially in the summertime! If you're a fan of fresh veggies and vinaigrettes, you will love this cucumber dill salad!! I made it two days in a row (with the feta mixed in, this recipe is probably best prepared no more than an hour or so before serving). Substituting basil for dill would give a totally different flavor. I think it could even be served on bread for a summer-style bruschetta.

My favorite recipes are those with minimal ingredients and maximum flavor, 
and these two were just that! 

Do you have any go-to recipes for lunches? 
How about make ahead recipes to share? 
I'm always up for trying something new!

+, Lauren Aiken


Nursery Inspiration

Well, we're down to almost 15 weeks until Baby A arrives! While we haven't purchased anything (aside from fabric) for the nursery yet, we have registered at Babies R Us and I've done a lot of looking online for inspiration.

The majority of cribs today are modern with very straight lines, but I prefer something with a little curvature. The sleigh makes it a bit feminine, but it's so slight that we could easily modify the rest of the decor for a boy in the future too! There are several similar ones out there, but this is the Graco Sarah Classic Convertible crib.

I've started compiling some of my favorite nurseries on Pinterest. Originally I wanted to do a peach and lavender color scheme. I just couldn't find any fabric that I liked (and peach is sooo hard to find this year)! After looking at about 5 different fabric stores, I picked out something that is different than I had envisioned, but I love it! It's bright, reads pink, and has several different colors in it. I'll give you a peek when I make the crib skirt!

Now, for some of the nurseries I like.

This room is so pretty! I love the floral ottoman and how feminine the room is. We've decided not to paint the nursery because our walls are a nice neutral color and not bright white, and the fabric has enough color on it's own!

This nursery is one of my favorites out there. I love the peach color and the softness of the room. I also like the simplicity of decorating. Framing fabric is so easy, and the room looks well put-together with the coordinating fabrics.


This kind envision Baby A's nursery like these two - mostly neutral but with pops of color. I like the bright print over the crib to tie into the crib skirt here.

I also think I want to incorporate little birds into her nursery. I love all of the owls out there, but they're everywhere right now so I'm looking for something a little bit different.

Finally, I love this painting from PB Kids. It may become a DIY project though because I can't justify spending $200 on nursery art!


That's all for now. I'm hoping to get the crib soon so I can start making the crib skirt!
Have a lovely Thursday!

+, Lauren Aiken



Hello! And welcome to LA-Stitch!
This is a continuation of my previous blog (AikensInSeattle).
You can read all about about the name change on the About LA page.

+, Lauren Aiken