Friday, December 25, 2009
I feel tremendously blessed today. December 2008 was a very difficult time. The whole year was one of loss for several reasons. As I reflect on how much I have been given this year, I cannot help but be thankful. God is good. And sometimes life is good too.
Today I celebrate the gifts of family, love and the Greatest Gift of All... my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
First we made cinnamon/applesauce ornaments. It's sooo easy. Basically take equal parts cinnamon (get the cheap kind from the dollar store) and applesauce. Mix well to make a dough. Roll out between two pieces of waxed paper to about 1/8" and cut out with cookie cutters. I used a straw to punch out holes at the top. W liked this part because the dough got stuck in the straw... hello projectile! So that's when I lost him and he started trying to make cinnamon spit balls. Then you let them dry at a low low oven temp or just air dry and turn them a few times. I'm not posting pics as they are gifts this year. My house smells delightfully of cinnamon everytime you walk in the front door. mmmm
W: You always need to be careful.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
I am feeling a bit out of touch with the Holiday season this year. Ads are talking about "last minute gifts" and I have barely started shopping. Ack!
That's not great. (As my dear son would say.)
So this week I would like to
* order the gifts for my brothers and the grandparents
* take a "Christmas" picture of the boys and order prints
* decide what the heck to get/make for Papa K
* mail out D's birth announcements
ETA: Hey it's working! :)
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
I got in some great GreenToys for the store. I showed them to W and asked him if he'd like one of them for Christmas. As much as I tried to sell the dump truck, he really wants the tea set. That boy loves his kitchen set! LOL
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I mean, I am sleep deprived, my house is a wreck and the laundry has taken over a couple pieces of furnture, but generally we are all well fed, clean and happy. We have had some rough nights of course. Nothing we can't handle or haven't done before. Honestly, we had such a hard transtion with our colicky first baby that anything seems easy in comparison. (Seriously one of the most difficult times of my entire life as I may have mentioned like a dozen times.) Papa K and I are really enjoying the baby phase this time. I'm like "Oh yeah! This is why people have babies!"
It sounds funny, but my biggest challenge is taking the kids grocery shopping. First off, I seriously dislike grocery shopping. Clipping coupons, chasing sales, planning meals... It used to be kinda fun but now it is such a hassle and takes far more brain power than it should. Due to a few recent
One unexpected joy is how sweet Big Brother W is with the little one. He is always kissing him and loving on him. Maybe because he is boy I didn't think he would be so nurturing? I know that since there is a decent age gap, he understands a little more. (Not that we planned it that way, but I'm glad it's working out.) We also talk a lot about What Baby Needs (Sears Children Library) and he seems to accept that. I'm sure they will fight with the best of them as they get older, but it is so sweet to see the bond they have right now. I'd like to think that the whole attachment parenting thing has helped this too. The other morning I found he had tucked his spare "night night" (security blanket) around his little brother and was talking to him. So cute.
My new strategy is to get out of the house at least a few mornings a week. When we are home, W's never ending energy and curiousity always leads to some sort of trouble. He is just so much work! LOL
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I was not feelin' the Trick or Treat action this year. I try pretty hard to avoid giving the kiddo sugary junk. So having him collect a big bag of the stuff that I'd have to ration out later didn't seem like a good idea. I think next year he would understand something like "the candy fairy" a little better. (That's where they trade in their extra candy Halloween for a toy... sorta like the Tooth Fairy.) But then there is still the dilemma of what to do with it. Toss it into the landfills? Eat it all myself? Have the hubs bring it to work? IDK. None of those appeal to me. Maybe I'll figure something out by next year.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
I've made the basic longies pattern a few times and it's my fav of the longies patterns I've tried. I'm actually working on another pair right now. :)
Hurry sale ends tonight I think!
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
This afternoon I started feeling a bit dizzy. Then I realized that all I had to drink all day was a cup of coffee. Dehydrated much? So NOT a good idea when you are nursing a baby a million times a day! I will be keeping my Klean Kanteen by my side from here on out.
BUT I have been working on the snacks thing. I made up a bunch of breakfast burritos (scrambled eggs, bacon, cheese, whole wheat tortilla) and froze them for a quick meal. I stocked up on some granola and other snacks. I still want to make some muffins. Maybe tomorrow!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Seriously how do people do this with big families?
Anywho I am trying not to feel guilty about living on egg mcmuffins, coffee, Halloween candy and almonds. However, I am starting to feel (physically) pretty crappy. The sleep deprivation is kicking in and a steady diet of caffeine and sugar are not exactly helping to keep me balanced. The hubs has suggested that I go back to yoga, but that would actually require pumping and getting the little one on a bottle. (Sounds an awful lot like work to me.) I know one preemptive strike would be to stock up on some nutritious snacks.
I guess I am rambling a bit. I haven't been having too many coherent thoughts these days.
Anyone else have some suggestions? Or know of any easy snacky recipies I could try? :)
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Life moves on. There are new joys to celebrate. Still, I will never forget the babies I never got to meet. I will be lighting two candles tonight and saying a prayer for my "sisters" who are remembering their losses as well.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Anyone not love Pumpkin Spiced Lattes? I made this Starbucks knockoff version. It was yummy but a bit more work than I'm willing to invest in a cup of coffee. If I ever had a crowd to serve, this crockpot version would be awesome for a party.
I'd also like to try this Harvest Pumpkin Brownies recipe from Everyday Food Storage and these Pumpkin Pancakes from The Mother Load.
Meatloaf The Nourishing Traditions Way - mmmm comfort food!
12 Weeks till Christmas: Prepare your Holiday Budget Now (at Simple Mom)
yikes! I know for sure I will not be handmaking the majority of gifts as I did last year. Time to figure out plan B.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
This is where I'm at this week. Life is up in the air at the moment. Trusting God that things will settle down again soon. As much as I'd like to run away with my sweet baby that is not currently an option. :)
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Here is the birth as I remember it.
The midwives never checked my dilation and I wasn’t watching a clock. So I don’t really have a clear timeline for it all. I am sitting here amazed at how our bodies are Created to bring new life into this world. My home, water birth with D was very different but yet very similar to my unmedicated, hospital delivery with W. Both amazing and empowering experiences! I’m sure I’ll be writing about that more later.
I woke up early in the morning of Sept 21st with strong rushes (contractions). I stayed up a bit, but then fell asleep on the couch. I had been having strong “practice” contractions off and on for about a week so I didn’t think much of it. They slowed down during the day and were not regular at all. I think my body knew Papa K had to work and I had to care for Wes during the day so it put everything on hold.
About 6pm that night I noticed that the rushes started coming in a regular pattern of about 7 minutes apart. I took Wes on a walk around the block a couple times. Then I called the midwife and she said to keep her posted. I wasn’t sure that this was the real thing yet, but since I was a couple days past my due date I figured it would be sooner or later. I called my doula and she was more convinced than I was, but I told her to stay put for now. When K got home from work we tidied up the house and got a few things ready just in case.
I went to bed around 11pm to try and get some sleep. At 2am the rushes were strong enough to wake me up. I got up and called my midwife and doula. I still was thinking that maybe this was a false alarm, but they were steadily getting more intense. I wasn’t really timing them anymore, but they seemed to be coming at about 5 minutes apart. I knew my doula and the second midwife had to drive an hour so I figured better safe than sorry.
J, my main midwife was the first to show up since she only lives about 10 minutes away. She listened to the baby’s heartbeat on the Doppler and all was well. (She checked his heartbeat regularly throughout the labor as well.) A little bit later Kristi, my dear friend and doula, arrived. I took a couple walks and watched a few episodes of Flight Of The Conchords. (Thanks to my bro for getting me that DVD. heh.) Nothing better than comedy, right? I sat on an exercise ball while watching TV. I know I got at least part of the way through “The Tough Brets.” As the intensity increased Kristi started doing some hip squeezes and counter pressure on my lower back. They asked if I wanted to get in the tub. I remember saying “I keep waiting for it to get worse before I get in.”
Meanwhile, Papa K filled up the birth tub and fought with the hot water heater a bit. Thankfully there was only one casualty, the faucet in our guest bathroom. :)
I tried to take another walk with Papa K but didn’t get too far. I remember that the sky was clear and I could see the constellations. I leaned on K during the rushes. They started coming faster so I wanted to go back in the house.
At some point W woke up and walked into the living room. I think it was around 4am. He was a little surprised to see all the people and would only go back to bed if daddy took him. He went back to sleep fine after that. We called my mom to come down to watch Wes in case he got up again.
After a few more really strong rushes, I decided it was time to get in the tub. Things were getting serious now and there was no doubt the baby was coming. I focused on breathing through the rushes and staying as relaxed as possible. The hot water helped me stay calm, but I also felt really hot. They put cold washcloths on my face and neck to cool me down. K and Kristi stayed by my side rubbing my back and encouraging me. The midwives did a wonderful job of staying unobtrusive yet making sure all was progressing normally and safely. After I was in the tub awhile they had me get out of the tub and walk to the bathroom to keep things moving along. I had a few more rushes out of the tub. It was nice to cool down a bit but I still wanted to get back in the water after that.
I remember at some point thinking that I might be in “transition” because I was having a hard time staying relaxed and started to get scared at the intensity of the contractions. I briefly thought to myself, “What the hell was I thinking doing this again?! I don’t want to do this.” Oh yeah, a classic emotion for transition! I knew that meant we were nearing the end.
I tried to focus on thinking/saying “open open open” and “peace peace peace” with each rush. (Both were Hypnobabies key words which I quickly ran through the last couple months.) I could literally feel my cervix pulling and opening up! I felt keenly aware of what was going on in my body. (Even though my first birth was unmedicated, I don’t remember feeling things so clearly. Probably because I was much more fatigued.) This was an amazing and scary sensation.
I don’t know what time it was, but I know that when I got in the tub it was dark, but it started to get light out before I hit transition. I could hear mom talking with W in his room. At some point she got him dressed and took him out of the house for a few hours.
With my first labor, “transition” lasted a couple hours. So I was surprised to find myself pushing all of a sudden. I told my midwives that I felt like I started to push on that last contraction. I think they were a little surprised too, but they reassured me that it was good and that the baby would be here soon. Pushing was so intense this time! It only lasted about a half an hour but it was hard work. Some women describe this part as a “relief” but I didn’t think so. I knew I was at the end and I just wanted him out. I had my eyes closed and I remember hearing everyone telling me what a great job I was doing. I felt my water break at some point during this stage.
I was tired and hurting and ready to meet the baby already! It was very primal. I think they described me as roaring. LOL My throat was sore afterwards so I definitely was loud. I kept checking to see if I could feel him, but could only feel and inch or so when he was just crowning. This was frustrating and motivating at the same time. All fear was gone. Kristi told me later that she never saw such a look of determination in anyone's eyes before. I wanted him out NOW! I wasn’t counting, but I think they said it was about 6 good pushes. It was such a relief when I felt his body come out.
His cord was wrapped around a couple times. I was on all fours in the water and the midwife unlooped the cord and caught him. She passed him to me under the water. She noticed one more loop as I grabbed him and said something. So I pulled it off of him before picking him up out of the water.
Amazing! He was finally here! Papa K was crying and I was just so elated to meet him. Keith kept saying, “Is he ok?” I guess because D wasn’t crying right away. But I knew that babies born in the water don’t always cry so I knew he was fine. He was moving and frowning. Then he took his first breaths while I held him and the midwives checked him out. I looked between the legs. It’s a boy! For some reason I wasn’t surprised at all. He reminded me of W when I first laid eyes on him.
I just sat back and enjoyed my new little guy for a few minutes. He was perfect! We hadn’t been 100% decided on a name, but D----- was a front runner. Papa K said, “It’s up to Kaiya.” So I said, “How about D?”
Daddy held him while I stood up to deliver the placenta. I got out of the tub and held him skin to skin under a warm towel to warm him up. Meanwhile J checked us out and everyone else took care of cleaning up the kitchen. I got Dex to latch on and nurse a little bit. He seemed to know right what he was doing.
K called my mom to bring Wes back. He was more interested in them deflating the pool than his new little brother. He was pretty interested in the umbilical cord. (He tells all visitors that Dex has a “uterus cord” and shows his cord stump to them. Heh.) We let the cord pulse for quite awhile. Then daddy cut it before I moved to my bedroom.
I grabbed a quick rinse in the shower and got into bed. I was really hungry and thirsty all of a sudden so I sent K out to get me a bagel sandwich and drank some sports drink stuff. They did the newborn exam in my room. Wes and my mom came in to watch. Kristi took pictures. They weighed and measured… 9lbs even and 22” long. Head measured 13 3/4 cm. D was alert and perfect! They stitched me up a bit at some point. Only one 2nd degree tear and some other minor ones. Nothing worse than what I had with Wes.
Recovery has gone well so far. I am feeling that adrenaline that comes after a natural birth. The best part! The only trick is to NOT over do it because I feel so good. I am following the “in bed for a week” advice and not lifting anything heavier than the baby. With W I admit I spent too much time entertaining and being up and around because I was surprised at how great I felt. I now know that at 2 weeks most babies get fussier, your hormones drop and most of your help leaves. So I am taking it easy, resting up and just enjoying my snuggly new baby boy!
Life is a precious gift. I praise God for I am fearfully and wonderfully made! :)
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
I am enjoying having the windows open and am looking forward to some fall treats... pumpkin baked goods, caramel apples, hot spiced cider...mmmm!
We will be ordering some more wood to keep our woodstove going this winter. I love a cozy fire! Hopefully that will cut down on some heating costs as well. The woodstove is in the main part of the house and is quite efficient at heating up the living room and play room.
In baby news, nothing major is happening yet. The baby "dropped" 2 weeks ago and I'm having tons of "practice" contractions. All good things but nothing to predict the big day!
The well meaning, but annoying, phone calls are pouring in daily. If we make it into next week I will be seriously screening my calls. So feel free to call, but don't be offended if I don't pick up or call back right away.
Really, asking me if anything is going on DAILY does not make the baby come any faster and does not help me to be calm and patient either! Sheesh.
I finally said to my dad today, "You know it could be another 2 weeks yet! It's up to the baby when he/she wants to come out."
I'm considering skipping church Sunday just so I don't have to have the same conversations as I have had the past 2 weeks. "Have that baby yet?" "Um nope" "Any day now!" "Yeah, hope so." Everytime I go to the grocery store it's like open season for weirdos. They all come up and start a conversation with me. So many odd comments. You do begin to feel like a bit of a freak show. At least people have enough sense not to touch me. I might get ugly if that happened. :)
Monday, September 14, 2009
A due date is just a GUESS of about when the baby will come. A guess with a margin of error of about 2 weeks either way. What I don't understand is why doctors cause such a fuss over a date that is based on info that the patient gave them in the first place. Women are routinely induced based on this arbitrary number which often leads to cascade of more unnecessary interventions.
I was googling around and found this article quite interesting:
It says that some German OB in the 1800's came up with the 40 week gestation period and that it has been proven that it's not all that accurate, but it is still the standard used by Drs today. It confirmed what the midwife told me:
When researchers in the late 1980s followed a group of healthy, white women with regular menstrual cycles, they discovered that pregnancy in first-time mothers averaged eight days longer than this, or forty-one weeks plus one day. The average was three days longer than forty weeks in women with prior births. The researchers also refer to other studies suggesting that other races may have average pregnancy lengths that are shorter than white women.
And that is given that you are sure of your dates and have a "regular" 28 day cycle, which many women do not. W came a few days after his EDD but I think that my membranes were stripped without my consent. So that would have kicked things into gear. I know that the worst part is the mental stress that you feel when you pass that date. On top of your physical discomfort, you begin to doubt that your body will ever go into labor on it's own and the Drs seem to confirm that.
As much as I wish I knew when this baby is coming, you can't predict these things exactly.
True for you?
Friday, September 11, 2009
Baby "dropped" a couple weeks ago and the head is engaged. I have the feeling that we are getting close.
Other than some non-essential sewing projects everything is pretty much ready.
W-man has been a bit easier on me this week. I've been making a real effort to take a walk with him each day or get him to the park to burn off some energy. He's all about practicing writing his letters and learning to read right now. So I'm taking advantage of it, abet in a completely unorganized fashion. I think I remember reading somewhere that this a natural age of "readiness" for reading for lots of kids. He's always been very verbal and ahead on the language skills so it makes sense. Once everything settles down after the baby is a few months old I'll get back on some more planned preschool learning stuff.
Thinking of doing a big chop... my hair that is. I always liked it either pretty short or really long. Loved the bangs but couldn't keep them trimmed enough to rock the look. I guess I better decide soon as my apt is in the morning. :)
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I definitely will NOT be purchasing any of their products in the future and urge you to do the same. I cannot believe that they even asked for an exemption. This law, which was intended to protect our children from toxic toys, has caused much stress and extra work for the smaller, cottage industries as they scramble to meet the new requirements. So in essence this law has "punished" those who have always been ethical and the big company who broke the public's trust by allowing lead laced toys to enter our homes gets a free pass.
Nature Moms Blog has a more in depth article with more of the facts.
Check out Non-Toxic Tots for eco-friendly and ethically made toys!
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Saturday, September 5, 2009
* Baking Shortcut: Make your own baking mixes - I have thought about this several times, but never actually put it in motion. I think this might have inspired me to give it a go. Baking from scratch is much cheaper and usually healthier but takes a bit more planning. I make pizza crust, bread and corn bread enough that it makes sense to do this ahead of time.
* Xagave Recipes - I love agave, a low-glycemic natural sweetener, and have been experimenting with using it in baking. So excited to find some proven recipes!
* Limeaid Recipe from Planet Smoothie mmmm
* Me and my Girl Quilt Tutorial - I have never made a quilt but I think I could swing this. It's made from colorful bandannas!
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Now W has had his share of messes... squirting lotion or creams all over was/is a big favorite. As is unrolling the toilet paper all over the house. And lets not forget the time I left a permanent marker out. (Good one, mom.) Shaking his water bottle all over his room, books, etc has happened more than once. He's also gone through the "no's" as he's learning his boundaries.
Thank God he has stayed away from the food for the most part. I have heard stories of a dozen broken eggs or children thoroughly coated in vaseline... or worse of all, poo!
Now my darling boy is suddenly taken a turn towards the violent. All of his previous attempts at mischief were largely motivated by curiosity and having fun. Now his little temper is in full force and he is lacking the emotional maturity to act in appropriate ways. The highlight of last week was when he pushed the TV over because I told him he had watched enough Caillou. (This is after an HOUR of Caillou while I cleaned the house.) I'll spare you the rest lest you think my little guy is evil or something. He has always had strong emotions, even as a baby. But all of a sudden it's like I have a little teenager on my hands. The back talking and tears and screaming and THROWING stuff... oh my!
There are several thing going on that are not helping... all the change going on in the house as we get ready for the baby, daddy working LOTS more hours, me being too tired to give him all my attention, etc etc. I also realize that as he's gotten older I've gotten more lax on keeping him in a predictable routine. The weekends have been a crapshoot, naps are abandoned, grandparents coming and going. I think he does better when things are more structured. (Too bad for him I'm his mom. heh. Structure is not exactly my strong suit.) I'm guessing with the new baby I will probably want to get back into more of a routine.
For now, I am focusing on ME. Meaning my reaction to the misbehavior. I cannot fly off the handle and be an emotional basketcase all the time. I need to be the adult... why is that so hard? I have accepted that this is normal for this stage in his life and I am going to teach him how to behave more appropriately... and pray that some of it sticks!
Mothers of toddlers, you have been warned. Pace yourself. The antics of 2 will seem darn cute in comparison to this drama!
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Before - Hot Mess:
After - Ahh!
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
You all know how I love new shoes. I am a Birki's convert after this summer. I bought my first pair in the spring and have worn them about 6 days a week since.
I also snagged the diaper bag I had my eye on:
I searched out a coupon code and saved 10% + Free Shipping. Then I realized you can stack codes and used a referral code to save $10 if you add diapers to your order. So I got a $2 pack of pullups too. Sweet! They also sell the California Baby wash that we use on my sensitive skinned boy.
BTW, if you are a new customer at Diapers.com you can use my code "MAMAKNJ" to save $10 off your purchase of diapers. $49 min purchase, but that doesn't have to be all dipes. You just have to have some dipes in your order.
And picked up my favorite post-birth essential:
Earth Mama Angel Baby "New Mama Bottom Spray" Not glamorous but what can I say? I got a couple more of their Mama products to try out too. It's a safe bet. I've loved anything I've tried of theirs.
Anyway, this was a pretty random post. Hope everyone is enjoying what is left of the summer!
Monday, August 17, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Oh and I'm trying to avoid dairy because I have read a lot about that causing fussiness in babies. If I can in anyway minimize the colic that I experienced with W, I am going to try it. I'm also avoiding soy if I can due to hormonal reasons. Yeah, good luck, right?
Here's some of the recipes I've collected:
Crock Pot Chicken w/ Black Beans
Just Like Thanksgiving Chicken
Lactation Cookies - who knows if they do anything, but they sound yummy and there might be some truth to the ingredients being helpful for postpartum moms
Any other suggestions?
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
I have been freaking out about misplacing some items. Then this morning W lost a piece to the brand new sorting toy that I got for him YESTERDAY. I looked all over the living room and that darn piece is no where to be found. He told me he put it in the washing machine, but I couldn't find it. Maybe he was just messing with me? Though he has been known to toss stuff in the wash when it's going. If it did make it into the wash it will be ruined. It's painted wood.
Here is the rest of my list:
*a stack of about 5 tie dye newborn t-shirts
*the twin sized duvet cover for W's bed
*pieces to another one of W's puzzles
Really. How does one loose a duvet cover???
I'm also in the midst of a major toy reorganization and destashing. We got lots of great new toys for W's birthday and it's time to weed out the old stuff. Of course I'd like to find all the pieces to everything before I post the stuff on Freecycle.
Blood sugar crashing and I desperately need to go grocery shopping... The insanity continues!
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Hello expensive. Netflix or a Redbox is much more budget friendly.
Anywho, last week we were granted the rare opportunity of DH getting home before 8pm and W was with grandmom so we decided to splurge on a trip to the movies.
We saw Away We Go. It was pretty much what I expected... quirky, subtly humorous and a little artsy. I really loved how it looked at parenting and families from different angles. I had to laugh at the super hippie Maggie Gillenhall character wearing her baby in a wrap and shunning strollers. There was also a scene that dealt with reoccurring miscarriage. It was very moving and unexpected. Both DH and I thought it was done so well. Whoever wrote it must have had some personal experience.
Oh and we Netflixed Knocked Up a couple weeks ago. Very vulgar and crude as expected but oh so funny to watch while you are pregnant.
We got to see Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince too. It was just ok. Definitely not one of my favorite movies from the series. The whole thing was a set up for the final chapter, but I guess that was to be expected. Also, they are waiting so long between releasing the films that I keep forgetting what happened in the previous movie. The hubs kept making fun of how old the actors are looking. IDK, they still looked like high schoolers to me, but maybe that's just me getting old. :)
Monday, August 3, 2009
"Remember: When your child cries, whines, makes mistakes, or fails to behave, it is not a reflection of your lack of commitment, love or skill. It is not an indication that your child is lacking in any way, either. It is simply a facet of humanness. If children were wise and perfect they wouldn't need parents. . ."
From The No-Cry Discipline Solutionby Elizabeth Pantley
So true. Same goes with our Heavenly Father. We are clearly not perfect creatures at any stage of life. :)
I guess I should feel some great sadness at the death of my 2o's or something. Maybe I am supposed to lie and say I'm 29 from here on out?
It is a little weird to think I'm no longer 20-something. Afterall, I have been 20-something my entire adult life.
I like that I have no big regrets. I love my life and my family. I'm proud of what I've accomplished, eventhough it's nothing overly impressive. I guess I've always felt that I'm a little older than my years.
So bring it on, 30's!
Here's to a decade of raising my kids, focusing on my family and going wherever the Lord leads us!
Saturday, August 1, 2009
They follow up with something about the gender... did you find out yet? are you going to find out? what do you want?
Oh and my biggest pet-peeve, "Were you trying for a girl?"
Huh? How exactly would one do that? It's basically a 50/50 shot, people.
So yes, blog-o-sphere, we had planned to find out. I was really excited about the big ultrasound, but long story short we decided against it due to factors beyond our control.
I can honestly say, all I want is a healthy baby. My main motivation for finding out was so we could
The first time, I really had my heart set on a girl. I'm not a "girly-girl" at all, but I do wear make-up and skirts and enjoy being a woman if that makes sense. I have 4 younger brothers and no sisters. No female cousins my age either. The hubs only has a brother as well. So there are a lack of females in the family. I was disappointed after the u/s showed that we were expecting a boy. I was glad I had some time to bond with the idea of a son before he was born.
But now, I love my little boy so much that I know once I meet the babe it won't be a thought in my mind. Boys are so fun and crazy and are still very lovey-dovey. It would be fun for DS to have a brother to play with. And of course it would be cheaper. I do have a sneaking suspicion that boys are more work when they are toddlers due to their sheer energy level and natural curiosity, but my mom did say my little brother was the easy one, not me. No guarantees there.
Everyone keeps asking if I have a prediction. I initially had a feeling it might be a girl this time because the pregnancy has been so different. W keeps saying it's a girl too. I'm not sure how many chances I'm going to get at motherhood so I would like to experience having a daughter if I can.
On the other hand, I had a very vivid dream that it was a boy. And since I already have a boy, it's easy to say "he" when referring to the baby. So really, I don't know what to think!
I know that my relationships with each of my children will be unique and different regardless of gender. What's meant to be will be! One thing is for sure, the anticipation is killing me. I can't wait to find out.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
* The Gentle Art of Homemaking ... an older post, but so encouraging. A must read for the other homemakers/housewives/SAHMs.
* Lemony Blueberry Muffin recipe at The Motherload
* Buttery Soft Pretzel recipe over at Adventures of a Breastfeeding Mother
* Batch Cooking Info (a part of Simple Mom's Back to the Basics series)... bookmarked 'cause I want to do some freezer meals before the new baby arrives!
* 9 Unique Ideas for Frugal Date Nights at The Motherload
* Considering Baby Names... click through to see how a potential baby name might be made fun of! LOL
And this just makes me happy! :)
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Oh and he also reorganized our attic. So I have the room to put up my yarn stash thus making room in the nursery/guest room for all the baby stuff. I am getting excited now that the end is in site! Less than 2 months left and we have tons going on in August. I can't wait to meet my new son or daughter!
Overall the trip was good. It was great to see Gram and I wish I had stayed with her the whole time and skipped the second half of the trip at the lake house. But W had a blast there and had lots of new experiences... his first s'mores, first ride on a jet ski (very slow of course), first ride in a tube, fun playing with his second cousins. Now I just hope he doesn't expect that level of entertainment at home! ;)
Much to do this week! Let the nesting begin.
Friday, July 17, 2009
1) Save on Baby Food
Probably one of the simplest things you can do is making your own babyfood. You can steam, mash and freeze veggies and other ingredients in ice cube trays. Pop the cubes in some freezer bags for later use. Easy peasy. It's healthy, fresh and way cheaper than those little jars. Super Baby Food is a great book. And there are many great free websites too, such as Nuture Baby and Wholesome Baby Food.
Buy the big jar of unsweetened applesauce instead of the smaller containers. Buy the big plain, whole milk yogurt instead of the little cups. When you baby is ready for cereal, get the plain oats in the cereal isle instead of the little boxes in the babyfood isle. You get the idea. I was laughing at myself once I started reading labels and comparing prices. I could buy all organic products for a fraction of the price of the regular stuff if I just got the full sized containers.
Also, you can do child-led introduction to solids and skip most of the spoon fed stuff. We did a combo of the two methods (make your own purees and child-led). My little guy is healthy and a good eater now. So it worked for us.
2) Save on Diapers
You can blow through about $1500 by the time your baby is potty trained. Even cloth diapering part time will cut down on that expense. I know we have saved so much from using cloth and laundering them ourselves. Not to mention, you can reuse the dipes for any subsequent children and/or resell if they are still in usable condition.
If cloth diapering is not for you, be sure to join the coupon mailing lists of the diaper companies and stock up when you find good sales. Compare prices. Don't forget to try generic brands too. Nothing says that more money = a better poop catcher. ;)
It's free! And if you are home with baby, you don't even need to buy a big supply of bottles, an expensive electric pump and all that other stuff. Of course we know there are other benefits. (Here are 101 more.) But my point is formula is expensive. I've never had to buy it, but from what I've read you can plan on spending $40 a week on formula. That adds up to 1,000-$2,300 for the first year depending on what kind you use. If you need to buy a hypoallergenic formula, it can run you even more. I've heard numbers up to $500 a month.
Breastfeeding exclusively for the first 6 months, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, will save you a significant amount of money. Breastfeeding up to a year (or even longer) will save you more.
Breastfeeding can be a challenge for many moms, but with the right information you can avoid many common problems. There is a fix for almost any problem that comes up. (Yes, I said almost.) Many moms unknowingly encourage early weaning due to bad advice they were given.
Having a good, knowledgeable support system is key.
Of course you know my fav resource for breastfeeding help is La Leche League mother-to-mother support. And KellyMom is a great site I've used often.
4) Stick to the Basics
Much of the baby "equipment" is redundant. Yet most of us, myself included, get all caught up on trying everything the first time around.
I'd recommend picking up ONE baby machine before baby is born. In addition, get yourself a baby carrier of some sort. (Something adjustable like a ring sling or a baby wrap is great for the beginning.) Most babies just want to be close to mom or dad to feel safe and secure.
If you feel the need for more stuff later, borrow a friend's to try it out. Or even take the babe to the store to see what they like in person. Many babies hate the swing or bouncer or whatever. Which means you can usually pick up an almost new one second hand. No point dropping money on something the kid might like.
One thing that is NOT recommended to buy used is a carseat. Safety first!
5) Think Long-Term
A booster seat that straps to an existing chair is a perfectly acceptable substitute for a high chair. It's also cheaper and takes up less space. Same goes for the "travel" sized swing vs the full sized one.
Consider the lifespan of the items you are purchasing. Some items have a very limited lifespan, while others can go the distance. For many people a travel system is overkill. They get along fine with a convertible carseat from the start and purchase a nice umbrella stroller once baby can sit up on their own. It all depends on your lifestyle.
The bottom line is that there is HUGE money in baby products. It is easy to get sucked in and think that you need everything those R Us stores are pushing. It is fun to shop for all those itty bitties, but spending your money wisely will benefit your family most in the long run.
How about you? Have you tried these or found other ways to save?
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
My mom is telling the same stories about her childhood that I have heard over and over each time we visit.
And then there is the thought this might be our last visit. When someone is 88 and I don't get out here but once every couple years, you can't help but wonder.
W-man has been doing great. Yesterday he really got on my nerves as his 2-year-old-ness was kicking in... spraying down the laundry room with Shout and stuff like that... but overall it's been fine. I think my Gram is enjoying having him around for the most part. He is darn cute sometimes.
My brother and stepdad are joining us today and we will be heading to our Uncle's lake house for the weekend. It should be a bit more eventful from here on out.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Friday, July 3, 2009
The little guy just loves them up and I have fun mixing up new creations in my blender. I've been trying for a more pureed consistancy since they seem to melt slower and are a little less drippy. We do "green smoothies" many days. If there are leftovers they go in the molds. It's a great way to get some extra veggies in. And they are just fruits and veggies so W can eat as many as he wants.
If this seems like too much work to you, you can always just pour juice, iced tea or whatever beverage you enjoy into molds as well.
Here are some of our favorite combos this year. I eyeball the ingredients and add just enough liquid to let my blender work. If the fruit is a little tart I add some honey. If it needs some zip, add lemon or lime juice. For an adult palate you want the mix to be a little sweet/tart as the cold tones down those tastes. The little guy doesn't care so much.
Pineapple + Coconut Milk + Banana + handful of baby Spinach
Mango + Banana + Apple Juice + squeeze of lemon for some tartness (+you could add some shredded carrot to make it a brighter color)
Strawberries + Kiwis + Honey + enough water to blend
Blueberries + Strawberries + Banana + handful of baby Spinach + Juice to blend
I think I need some more molds since we've been going through these so fast... BTW, I use the Tovolo Green Shooting Star Pop Molds. They are BPA-free plastic and are a great design. I love how you can fill up each one individually. It makes for easy un-molding too.
(I was waiting for some good pictures before I posted this, but um not going to happen. LOL)
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
The bountiful rain we are having is creating a bumper crop of the little blue gems. W and I checked out a "you-pick" blueberry farm yesterday. They use "organic methods" but are not certified organic. The weather was perfect. It was overcast and not too hot. It's so cheap to pick your own! I wanted to stay longer and pick more, but the little one was only into it for so long. I'm going to try again next week and bring a friend. I'm hoping W and the other kid(s) can entertain eachother while the mamas pick.
I came home and whipped up a blueberry cobbler. It was yummy, but since I subbed out the sugar for agave and the flour for whole wheat and oats it was not quite the sugary goodness of the regular stuff. (I'm watching my sugar intake due to the pregnancy.)
Gotta get more to freeze! And I think I need to add some blueberry muffins to my post-baby freezer stash.
PS I always think of my friend *shell* when I pick blueberries. She used to have a job doing it when she was a kid. :)
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Oh well. We all have our flaws! : P
On the plus side, I'm now in the 3rd trimester! Yay! I have been forcing myself to take a nap (no matter how hard W goes down for his) and it really is helping me feel a little better in the evenings.
Just reading through the description of "spirted" to Papa K last night was one of those ah-ha moments. More on that once I finish it. :)
I've been really trying to get the little guy out of the house and as busy as possible. Monday we had a nice trip to the playground. Today my bro is coming down to watch W while I run some errands. Last night was La Leche Legue Meeting. This morning is story time at the library. And weather permitting, Friday is our first "beach day" of the season.