maternity session at white rock.

This pregnancy has flown by. There is literally no other way to describe it. I’ve always thought that 9 months was such a long time, but here we are at 35 weeks and I’m desperately trying to get everything ready for our baby girl.

I was honestly on the fence about whether or not I should take maternity photos, but I cannot even tell you all how very glad I am that we did. This season has rushed by with hardly any documentation on my part and I’m so thankful to have these beautiful photos to forever lock this moment in time. Not to mention the fact that my husband and I literally haven’t had any professional pictures taken of us since our wedding…four years ago.

We shot these pictures at White Rock Lake in Dallas, TX. My husband and I both have family in the area, so that lake has always been a special and familiar place to us both. It just seemed like such a natural fit for us to take these pictures with our girl by the water because it’s such a big part of who we are as a couple, and we can’t wait to introduce her to it as well.

I cannot say enough about our incredible photographer, Kacey Gilpin, either. I “met” Kacey years ago on instagram and I’ve always thought that we would get along well in real life, and I was right. Not only is she talented, but she’s also a thoughtful, hilarious, Jesus-loving mama who brought us coffee for our early shoot. You just can’t beat that.

So, here are a just a few of the pictures we took last weekend. I’m so in love with them all and I hope you enjoy them as well.

ASOS Maternity Top in Gingham / Motherhood Maternity Skinny Pants / Jack Rogers Napa Valley Sandal / Lisi Lerch Tassel Earrings

]*all images are property of A Dash of Lovely

blueberry coffee cake muffins.

In so many ways, I feel like the last several months have rushed past without me even noticing it. There are still so many things I want to accomplish in our new home, so many things to do to prepare for the arrival of our girl, but every time I look up it seems like another 3 weeks have flown by and I haven’t done anything.

I spent a lot of time at home last week during my spring break, just relishing in our house. Thinking about flowers I wanted to plant in the backyard, pillows I want to purchase for our sofa…you know, the usual. But I also realized, I’ve been so caught up in the things I still want and need to do that I haven’t taken the time to really settle in and do the things that always made me happy in our last home. Like baking on a Saturday morning.

I get worn out pretty quickly these days (read: always out of breath), so I decided to go with something simple and perfect for the new season. This isn’t a traditional blueberry muffin, but I think it might become a tradition in our home. My husband actually declared that it was the best blueberry muffin he had ever had – which is a pretty bold statement. But truthfully, they are delicious! I keep cartons of blueberries in the fridge this time of year, so I already had all of the ingredients in the house and they took no time at all to whip up. They are the perfect comforting breakfast for your weekend…or any day really.

Ingredients

¼ cup sliced almonds, finely chopped
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup sour cream
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ¼ cup fresh blueberries
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard 12-cup muffin-tin with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, combine chopped almonds, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Mix well and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Cut 8 tablespoons of butter into ½ inch pieces and sprinkle evenly over flour mixture. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mixture until butter is oat-sized. Remove 1 cup of the flour-butter mixture and stir into reserved brown sugar mixture until combined to make streusel; set aside. Add baking powder and baking soda to remaining flour mixture and stir to combine.

In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together sour cream, egg, and vanilla. Add liquids to flour mixture and stir until just combined. Add ¾ cup of streusel mixture to flour mixture and stir until streusel is just distributed throughout batter. Melt the remaining butter and stir into remaining streusel mixture, until streusel resembles a crumble. Gently fold blueberries into batter.

Divide batter among 12 muffin cups and sprinkle generously with streusel topping, crumbling with your hands to make some big chunks. Bake 22 to 24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of muffin comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the glaze, whisk the confectioners’ sugar, milk and vanilla extract together. Drizzle over muffins. Store in a sealed container for up to 2 days.

*recipe via

lemon cucumber couscous salad + tzatziki

I am typically very much in favor of seasonal dishes, but when the temperatures are in the 70’s and 80’s in February, I tend to throw all of that out the window. Who wants something hot and steamy when you’ve just spent the afternoon outside getting a tan? Not I. And yes, I actually picked up some new tan lines this Saturday.

So instead I decided to go all Greek and springy and make this fantastic lemon cucumber couscous salad with tzatziki. I simply adore Greek food and my husband and I eat Mediterranean meals almost exclusively during the warmer months. Our house is always stocked with loads of hummus, seafood, sun dried tomatoes, pita chips, and white wine. This couscous salad incorporates everything I love about Mediterranean flavors and pairs perfectly with salmon or grilled chicken and a nice, crisp Sauvignon Blanc. Tzatziki is a traditional Greek dip that is delicious with just about everything, and although I have it pictured here with pita chips – I would be lying if I told you I didn’t put a fair dollop on top of my couscous as well.

Lemon Cucumber Couscous Salad

Ingredients

1½ to 2 cups couscous
2 medium cucumbers
¼ bunch parsley
1 medium lemon
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp salt
freshly cracked pepper to taste
3 oz. crumbled feta cheese

Instructions

Bring a medium pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the couscous to boiling water, stir once to combine, cover with lid and remove from heat.

Cut the cucumber into quarter rounds and place them in a large bowl. Take a big handful (or about ¼ bunch) of parsley and pull the leaves from the stems. Roughly chop the parsley and then add it to the bowl with the cucumber. Use a fine holed cheese grater or a zester to remove the thin layer of yellow zest from the lemon and add it the bowl with the other ingredients.

Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a small bowl (you should get 2-3 tablespoons of juice). Add the olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper. Stir to combine and then pour the dressing over the cucumber, parsley, and lemon zest. Stir to combine.

Add the couscous and crumbled feta to the bowl. Gently stir to combine all of the ingredients. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper as needed. Serve immediately or chill until ready to eat.

*recipe adapted via

Tzatziki

Ingredients

½ English cucumber, peeled
2 cups cold plain Greek yogurt
4 cloves garlic, pressed
⅓ cup chopped fresh dill
1½ Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ tsp salt, or to taste
⅛ tsp black pepper

Instructions

The Cucumber should be peeled, finely diced and strained of it’s juices. I squeezed it really tight by the fistful. You can use a cheese cloth if you wish. Getting rid of excess juice is important so that you tzatziki sauce isn’t watery the next day.

Combine the strained and chopped cucumber with 2 cups plain greek yogurt, 1½ Tbsp lemon juice, 4 pressed garlic cloves, ⅓ cup chopped dill, ½ tsp salt (add more to taste) and ⅛ tsp black pepper.

Mix everything together and add more salt to taste if needed. It’s best to refrigerate for about 1 hour before serving to let the flavors meld. It tastes even better when refrigerated overnight!