I’ve mentioned several times over the last 8 years that I am a novice cook, at best. My abilities have always been hindered because of my fear of making something that tastes awful. So, for years, I just avoided cooking. I mean, Chad has always loved to cook — and he’s great at it! So I took a backseat.

But 3 years ago Chad bought me an Instant Pot and I started to dabble in making meals for our family. It’s still been something I’m not ultimately comfortable with; but the Instant Pot is an amazing invention. And the growth of its popularity has given me more and more courage to branch out and try new recipes — and adapt old ones!

My most recent Dinner Conquest was a Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup, adapted from this recipe.

Instant Pot Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup

Serves 8 - 10
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 7 minutes
Total time 17 minutes
Meal type Soup
This soup is perfect for a quick meal that everyone will enjoy. It's creamy, hearty, and true comfort food!


  • 2 tablespoons Oil, Coconut or Olive
  • 3 Carrots (chopped)
  • 3 Celery Stalks (chopped)
  • 2/3 Sweet Onion (chopped)
  • 1 packet Dry Ranch Seasoning Mix
  • 2 (32 oz) Chicken Broth
  • 1 can Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup ((10.75 oz))
  • 3 cups Rotisserie Chicken, Cooked (pulled apart)
  • 8oz Spaghetti Noodles (uncooked)
  • 8 Slices Bacon, Cooked (crumbled)
  • 1 cup Half and Half
  • 2 cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese (shredded)
  • Salt + Pepper to taste


Step 1
Turn Instant Pot (IP) on "Saute" and wait for "HOT". Then add oil. Saute carrots, celery, and onions until onions are translucent (about 5 minutes). Then add dry ranch mix and make sure vegetables are evenly coated. Turn off saute ('cancel').
Step 2
Break spaghetti noodles in half. Criss-cross (lay flat) noodles on top of cooked vegetables. Add chicken and bacon on top of noodles. Then add condensed soup and both cartons of chicken broth. Make sure contents are fully covered by liquid (broth).
Step 3
Lock lid to Instant Pot and double-check to make sure release is in "Sealed" position. Use "Soup" setting and change to 7 minutes (use the " - " button to adjust time).
Step 4
When Soup timer goes off, naturally release the pressure for 10 minutes; then quick release and lift the lid. Stir in half & half and cheese until thoroughly mixed. Serve immediately.

I am IN LOVE with comfort food this pregnancy — and this? paired with some rolls or a piece of toasted bread? Perfection! It’s just what this baby ordered! I’m in love with how creamy and hearty it is — which is perfect for a cold Winter’s afternoon!

We’re definitely adding it to our weeknight dinner rotation! 😉 The kids loved it — and so did I (and so did this baby in my tummy)!



For as long as I can remember, I have had emetophobia. Emetophobia is classified as ‘a phobia that causes overwhelming, intense anxiety pertaining to vomiting. This specific phobia can also include subcategories of what causes the anxiety, including a fear of vomiting in public, a fear of seeing vomit, a fear of watching the action of vomiting or fear of being nauseated.’

And, for as long as I can remember, people have said things like “yeah, I don’t like vomit either.” Except, that isn’t it. That isn’t it at all.

Recently ScaryMommy shared a blog post regarding parenting with emetophobia. I immediately tagged everyone I knew in the comments as if to say “here. read this.”

It’s brought up a lot of dialogue in many circles. I’ve had to explain to people all of the ways this affects me — every. single. day. And I think it’s truly difficult for people to understand, so I figured I’d write about what it’s like living with emetophobia — the little things and all.

Here are some things that go through my head on a daily basis:

  • I have to sit at the window seat of an airplane, but not because I want to see out of the window. I just want to be furthest from the aisle — in case someone gets sick.

  • If I’m going to the movies, I’m always thinking about the potential for the people around me to throw up.
  • I cannot hear the word ‘puke.’ It is awful. I will always refer to it as vomit; and if I hear someone say puke several times I will politely ask them not to.
  • If someone (my kids, other peoples kids, anyone really) even looks like they are not feeling well, I will ask them over and over and over again if they have a belly ache.

  • Every place I go — whether it be the grocery store, preschool drop-off, using a public restroom, going out to dinner — the fear of someone getting sick or being sick is on my mind. Always.
  • In fact, if I’m somewhere and I hear that someone elses family member is sick/has been sick recently (even if they are not present), it will induce a serious anxiety — often resulting in me wondering if I’m starting to feel sick.

  • I carry Clorox wipes with me and use them far too frequently. I specifically keep them for shopping carts, but I do not trust hand sanitizer because it does not fight the germs that cause the stomach bug. You know what does? Bleach. Bleach will kill it. So I carry these bleach wipes with me just in case.

There is not a day that goes by where I do not think about my emetophobia. During the depths of ‘sick season,’ I can often be found with severe anxiety for days. It’s absolutely unhealthy.

ScaryMommy really summed it up with this:

Unlike many fears, emetophobia can easily affect a person’s everyday life and eventually become totally debilitating. Emetophobes are essentially afraid of their own body, and there’s no getting away from the possibility of getting sick. Anyone, at any time, could be carrying around a contagious stomach virus and not know it. Any food could be contaminated with food-borne illness. Most of us live our lives understanding those lingering possibilities, but don’t give them a second thought. And even if we do, we’re able to brush it off quickly.

My anxiety medicine certainly helps curb some of this; but the fear itself is deep-rooted in who I am. I will never be free of itI just have good days and bad days. But please, please, keep in mind that people like me do exist — and there are far more of us than you likely know.

And their simple request for you to refrain from saying a word or talking about vomit does not go unwarranted — remember it may truly be causing them trauma unbeknownst to you.


Wait, didn’t I just make our pregnancy announcement for Baby Number 3!? Sure as heck feels that way! But here we are, at 20 weeks and 5 days already.

And you know what that means?! It means that we finally had our 20 week anatomy ultrasound! Funny enough, the day leading up to the appointment was a complete disaster. I’ve had a nasty sinus infection for days and both kids were losing their minds (AKA – it was naptime). Oh, and Chad couldn’t make it from work, so I was flying solo.

But all of the crazy was washed away when I finally laid eyes on the teeny human who’s been kicking me from the inside!

If I’m being honest, for the first time this whole pregnancy, it finally felt really real. Like, I finally put a ‘face’ to this pregnancy. Does that even make sense!?

Well here’s what else is going on this pregnancy:

Nausea / Morning Sickness. 

Still frequent. It sucks. But it’s hit or miss, which I’m not certain is a good thing because it can take me down out of nowhere.


Still protein-packed foods like beans, beef, lentils, etc. Oh, and fish sandwiches. And chili. So odd, I know. Oooh! And avocados.


Grilled chicken still. I think the thought of poultry just grosses me out, but when I eat one of Ari’s nuggets from Chick-fil-A, I’m like “eh, this isn’t bad at all.” Other than that, I’m mostly alright with food. I’m not overly hungry, but I’m also not starving myself.

Working out.

I’m not going to lie, this is pretty hit or miss; but it’s still more than I worked out with my other two pregnancies. I am still teaching cycling and still coaching gymnastics at the YMCA, but I’m also registered to take a bunch of fitness classes. My biggest struggle is getting to them because they are mostly in the evenings and I’m always wiped out by 6pm.

But chasing two kids around (and even MORE kids when I’m at work — sometimes 10 at a time!) is definitely keeping me active!


I. am. so. TIRED. I recently told someone that I totally underestimated how exhausting pregnancy is when you’re in your 30s and chasing around two kids under 5.

I totally underestimated how exhausting pregnancy is when you're in your 30s and chasing around two kids under 5. Click To Tweet

Guys, it’s EXHAUSTING. I’m so tired and I know there’s no end in sight (thanks to a soon-to-be earthside crying baby). I’m just kissing my sanity goodbye. Well, what’s left of it anyway.

Gender reveal?

Well I was team “green” for the first 20 weeks, but now I kind of want to know. I had the ultrasound technician write it in an envelope and so this will be “To be determined/discussed.” 🙂


Overall, it’s just really real now. I’ve always been happy, but now I’m really and truly excited! 


Milk Street Baby Launch at Berg’s Baby and Teen Furniture //

January 26, 2018

If you were watching my Instagram stories last weekend you probably saw how excited I was to attend and co-host the launch of Milk Street Baby at Berg’s Baby and Teen Furniture in Lyndhurst! Alicia of Always Alicia and I were lucky enough to meet designer and founder of Milk Street Baby, Julie Knisley!   […]

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a Valentine’s Day Treat for Kids

January 25, 2018

I have to admit it — Valentine’s Day is generally not a holiday that gets me super excited. No, I’ve never had a bad Valentine’s Day experience; it just hasn’t been a holiday that holds much tradition in our family. But, as I’ve mentioned before, KIDS CHANGE EVERYTHING, y’all. They even make some moms who […]

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Celebrating Kids Birthdays with Snapology

January 23, 2018

With my current baby just turning two, I have been thinking about all of the ways we can celebrate this little lady. Thankfully, I decided not to squeeze in a birthday party before the end of the month and opted to just wait until the middle of February. (Mom win and she’ll never know, right?!) […]

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Happy 2nd Birthday Remy Bea // PLUS a Baby Gift Card Giveaway

January 22, 2018

Oh, my spirited little girl… Admittedly, I did not quite understand what ‘other parents’ meant when they said they had spirited children. I thought, “Spirited?! You just mean misbehaved??” I can honestly say, I was one-thousand percent WRONG. Spirited children are just that… full of a wild, untamed, spirit! That is exactly my Remy Bea. […]

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Explore Ohio // Kent

January 17, 2018

Ohio in Winter — is cold — but it’s also a gorgeous time to explore our local community. It’s hard not to think about moving when the temperatures are -15 degrees. But heck! even if I could, I wouldn’t move out of Ohio. Nope. I’d move to this gem in the Short North, Columbus. (Listed […]

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Friday Introduction //

January 12, 2018

Oh, hi! Since we’ve recently entered a whole new year, I figured I’d take a few minutes out of your Friday to introduce myself! 1.  I am a chronic oversharer — both online and IRL. I can’t help it. 2.  As much of a social butterfly that I am, I also crave doing things alone […]

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New Year, New Me // Simplifying in 2018 with Curbside Delivery

January 8, 2018

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GiantEagleDelivers #CollectiveBias Welcome, 2018! This year brings lots of changes for my growing family! And I’m happy to report that, thanks to some serious growth and self-reflection, there are some things I’m just leaving in 2017. For instance, […]

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