One-Pan Pasta

Just before the seasons change, I always get a little antsy for what's ahead. Am I the only one?? I'm currently loving PSLs, cozy sweaters and boots (I'm holding out here - it's still 80 degrees in Nashville), spiced and pumpkin flavored desserts, roasted veggie dishes, and one-pot meals. I haven't made a ton of one-pot meals in the past, but this fall I'm on a mission to find some great one-pot recipes! The best thing about them in my opinion? Easy clean up! I don't think Matt will refuse since he washes the dishes most nights :). 

Last week we tried this one-pan pasta from Martha Stewart. I used penne instead of linguine and 2 medium tomatoes instead of cherry, added broccoli, and topped it with crumbled goat cheese. If I were to make this combo again, I'd add more vegetables in. Now seriously, why didn't I think of this before?! As long as you get the pasta/water ratio correct, all sorts of variations are possible!

Do you have any favorite one-pan meals? 
Please share your recipe with me!

+, Lauren Aiken
P.S. I'm linking up with Blair from W&P today. She is expecting her second child any day now! 


Baby Nora: 10 Months

Nora and I are currently sitting in the hospital with Matt. For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you probably know by now that Matt has been in the hospital just over 24 hours now for Rhabdomyolysis. It's basically a weird thing that happened after he worked out on Friday evening. The muscle breakdown is releasing myoglobin into his bloodstream, and his kidneys can't keep up with filtering it out. He's getting lots of fluids, and they're managing his pain while monitoring his liver and kidney function. His arms are really swollen from his forearm to past his bicep and he has very limited range of motion, but other than that he is in good spirits and feeling ok. Please pray for complete internal healing and also reduction of swelling in his arms - Nora and I miss him at home!

While we were in Iowa, I decided to take a few outdoor photos to document Nora at 10 months. She has spent a lot of time outdoors, but usually it's when we're eating outside or going for walks so she hasn't been in the grass much. It was so funny watching her for the first time. She is typically fearless and adventurous, but in the grass she displayed caution. In the photo above she is reaching as far as she can for a weed because she refused to crawl in the grass! She's explored a little more since then and now crawls really fast through grass. 

Stats: At Nora's 9 month appointment, she weighed 18.1 pounds and was just under 27 inches long. Her growth rate has slowed a little bit, and she's grown just 1/4 inch since her 6 month appointment. The doctor suggested we amp up her food (which is not a problem because she loves to eat!), and they will check her again at 12 months to see how she's grown. By 10 months, her other top front tooth cut through (5 teeth total)! 

Activities: Nora has really shown an interest in books the past month or so. We have a little bookshelf in the bonus room (where she plays most of the day) that houses a few of her books. She likes to take them all off the shelf and will "read" to herself, push her books around while she crawls (sliding this way also makes her faster - smart girl!), and loves to point and turn the pages when we read to her. 

We're helping her take steps now, and she can stand on her own but usually sits down after a few seconds. She's still pulling up on furniture and cruising around the room! She's starting to enjoy more interactive and cause/effect toys and finally seems to actually enjoy bath time!

Food: This month we've cut way back on purees and have transitioned to more table foods! She loves all kinds of fruits cut into little pieces, steamed veggies, and toast. She's also had greek yogurt, pasta, and homemade spaghetti o's (recipe here). I've stopped making purees for the most part since she mainly eats them when we are out. Instead, we've been buying the baby food pouches and really love the Happy Tot brand. Nora started squeezing them herself, which makes them extra convenient on the go! 

Sleep: The sleep routine is still the same. Naps twice a day, morning and afternoon, for anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. Our bedtime routine has been working great, and Nora usually goes down on her own right away. We've started using a real toothbrush now, and she loves getting her teeth brushed. She has even started to hold onto the toothbrush and help :). 

That's all for this month!
+, Lauren Aiken
 P.S. The blog got a little makeover this weekend! I also added social media buttons in the right sidebar so you can easily follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest :). 



A couple weekends ago, we took a trip to visit Matt's grandparents in Iowa for the last time. By now, they are settling into a new routine in Colorado Springs! The trip was extra special to us for a few reasons. We were able to hear Grandpa Aiken preach his last sermon in Iowa, I met some extended family for the first time, and we finally got to introduce Nora to her Great Grandma and Grandpa!
For any family reading this, we will send a link to these photos (and more) soon!

Have a great weekend!
+, Lauren Aiken