Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Yikes

It's been a while.

Just a quick update, since it's ass crack of dawn:30

Maddie is now 3 months old and just the most amazing thing. I am so in love with my smiley, wonderful, happy baby.

Miles is taking ice skating lessons. His favorite color is pink, so he has some spiffy pink ice skates. He's going to be 7 in December. He's in LOVE with electronics and figuring out how things work. He adores the game Spore & the game Crazy Machines, where you put together Rube Goldberg type machines.

Max is still 9, and just got his white stripe on his green belt in TaeKwonDo, which he is really proud of. He's also currently obsessed with Pokemon. His Pokemon obsession comes and goes, but it's been on for the last few months. I don't know that he is currently capable of having an entire conversation without getting distracted and bringing pokemon into it.

Both of the boys voted in the Kids Vote thing on Nick. Obama, of course. They also dig talking politics. They are both in chess club at the library. They both love being homeschooled. Their eyeballs obviously have extra sparkles.

Maddie is smiling, drooling, loves to be held so that she can stand, learning what hands are for, contemplating her legs, considering her body's ability to roll over.

I am happy, no PPD, which is good.
I think my meds could be working better, though, cause I am having some issues with mood swings and general bitchiness. I am also over the top with anxiety lately, but I think that's just kind of in the air. The election, the economy, etc.

I cannot wait until the election is over.

My husband is, as always, awesome. I love him with all of my heart and I am so happy to be married to him. He is also an amazing daddy, parent to the boys, and just an all around great guy. Not to mention Teh Sexxy.

My BFF had a hysterectomy today, her husband called to tell me she was out of surgery and doing well. So Yay! I will go see her next weekend, once she's out of the hospital and chillaxin' at the 'rents house.

Halloween is Friday! w00t! It's my favorite holiday! Some friends are having their 10th wedding anniversary party, so we are going to go to their place, the kids will do TorTing, and much fun will be had by all. Can't figure out a costume for me or Chris but whatever, I'm sure I'll come up with something. Maybe.

Anyway, it is 4 in the morning, and I have no business being awake.
This is the most boring post ever, but I am too tired to try to be entertaining.

Friday, September 19, 2008

I've been neglecting you

My poor blog, it's been woefully neglected of late.

I am going to do a fun food related dohicky for my own enjoyment! Comment if you put it in your blog and let me know so I can be sure to read your responses.

Copy this list into your blog, including these instructions.
Bold all items you've eaten.
Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.

1.Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
Well, Kitfo, but that counts, right?
5. Crocodile
We’ll say yes, but actually only alligator, but close enough

6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. Peanut butter and jelly sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn or head cheese

26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a big fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal

44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut

50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi

53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal

56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
, I hate beer but I have tried several w/ high ABV’s
59. Poutine Oh, but how I want to
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores

62. Sweetbreads No way could I do it. Nope. Never.
63. Kaolin Like Kaopectade? How is this mineral a food? I think I’ve taken it before, though, so technically yes, I have ingested it.
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini

73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers

89. Horse I’ve heard it’s not good & I just wouldn’t be able to bring myself to eat it
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
Once, on accident. Anything rose flavored is GROSS
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee

100. Snake


Monday, August 18, 2008

An Update!




Wow, I haven't updated in a while!

I have just been enjoying my new baby girl immensely. She is such a sweet little thing, and each day Chris and I are in awe of this beautiful little creature.

The boys both admit she's pretty cool, too :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

My Baby Girl

I am so in love with this little girl, it's unreal.

I'll make a real post sometime soon, but I just had to say how in love I am. :D

Monday, July 21, 2008

Madeleine Anaise

I'm just cutting and pasting the post I made on the Mothering boards:

Pictures!


Early Saturday morning, July 19th, 8 days before my edd, around 4am, when I was finally going into bed for the night, I went to pee first and because of all the talk of obsessive toilet paper checking, checked my paper, which I had just started doing, and it looked pink tinged. So I wiped again to make sure and yup, it was a bit of light pink.

I told dh as we crawled into bed.
I fell asleep fairly easily but didn't sleep well. I think I was a little excited. I woke up a few times through the night, but was able to go right back to sleep, though not deeply.

At just before 10 I woke up and it felt a little weird down there, and I was wondering if I had mucus plug trying to come out or what. After a few minutes of trying to decide if I wanted to get up to go pee and check there was a little pop and warm fluid. Not a whole lot, but enough that I was pretty sure my water broke (this is the first time it's broken before way late into labor).
I told dh and we got up to put in a load of baby clothes and the new sheets in the laundry. (That day was supposed to be laundry day so it hadn't been done yet!) I had a few mild contractions going to the laundry room and knew that this would be picking up pretty quickly.

When we got back to the apt I lost my plug in a big way. I called my best friend because I suddenly thought I might like to have her there cause we had a bit of stuff to get done. I also called one of my closest friends who lives in my apts who is a professional photographer, and she wanted to at least get some early labor shots if I felt like letting her. So she came over at about 10:45 and my contractions were picking up. My best friend got here around 11:15 and things were already starting to get very intense. My friend A needed to make a battery run, so she left to do that, and my best friend K came into the room with me while Chris went to switch over laundry. She had filled up my birth ball for me, but I wanted to lay down cause I was starting to feel nauseated.

When Chris came back I was starting to feel kind of panicky, cause things were getting very hard very fast and I just didn't feel like she was positioned well. I could tell she had gone completely head down, but wasn't moving down in a good way. I wasn't worried about her, I was worried about me, to be honest.

Contractions were still spaced a ways apart, so I knew it wasn't transition yet, so I knew when I was SURE I wanted to go to the hospital it wasn't just me freaking out, it was more than that.

At this point they were coming about 3-4 minutes apart and lasting a minute or so, and I couldn't keep my focus through them at all. That wasn't a good feeling, and I told Chris to grab a few things (my robe, and the camera, I think) and shove them in a bag and that I wanted to go NOW.

The hospital we decided to go to is only about 4? miles away, and I had about 4 contractions on the way there. That was BAD. I was leaning over into the bad seat just dry heaving and screaming, and COULD NOT GET IT TOGETHER. I think that was the worst part. I was able to keep it together in my previous births. I may have been quite vocal but I KNOW screaming tightens, etc. But I could not manage.

We got to the hospital, and I had a few contractions getting into the room and changed. At this point I think it was about 12:30. When whoever it was checked me I was only at 6cm. It wasn't a surprise at all, I knew I wouldn't be farther than that. I had a really hard time getting through things for the next while, and I had just a bit of a lip and was fully dilated close to 2. At this point I was nominally better at vocalizing in good ways except during peaks, but it was still impossible to stay focused through. I was a mess.

She was posterior, kinda badly positioned, but started at some point to have a major issue with decels, and I was fully dilated. They wanted me to push since she WAS starting to have those decels and my water was broken, and so I did, but not well at all. That was really bad. Her heart rate evened out, though, and I pushed for close to half an hour, and she kept going right back up each time. And I could FEEL her head hitting my pubic bones. It just didn't feel right. I told them this and told them I HAD to stop pushing, cause also at that point I literally thought my back and tailbone were on the verge of breaking. So the ob said ok, we'll wait, cause I obviously was NOT going to keep pushing

I told them I really wanted an epidural (again, actually), (I felt ok with this since I would NOT have pit and I was already fully dilated). The nurse I had who was wonderful, got the anesthesiologist in there for me, and somehow I managed to love through getting the epidural put in without moving during a contraction. He didn't hook me up to the drip since they figured I would have the baby any time. One contraction, same awful. Next one, ok. The next? I was just fine. I could still feel them and was completely aware of what my body was doing, but there was no pain. It was amazing. I NEVER thought I would be in a hospital again, with an epidural! and happy about it, but I was. Oh boy, I was. I guess circumstances make all the difference. A posterior baby stuck on pelvic bones with broken water? Yeah... That made the difference to me!

The ob (some random guy I'd never seen before, but he was ok. The obs are really quite superfluous really, ime, as long as they're not jerks) saw that now that I was comfortable and the baby was just fine we could take however long we needed and try to let the baby turn. So I would lay on my right side, then my left, for about half an hour each, then my nurse would ask me to turn again. Which was amusing seeing as how I had an epidural and had a heck of a time maneuvering my legs!! But I managed.

The epidural was done perfectly, too. I really could feel what my body was doing every moment, I could tell when she had finally turned, and just felt her descend really well, in the perfect position this time. They were really hands off, and trusted me to just tell them what I was feeling. My nurse just told me they would check again when the pressure starting feeling almost constant. The epidural was starting to wear off so she called the guy back to just put me on the drip. He was surprised to see me again
During this time dh & I sat listening to a podcast sharing my ipod headphones just holding hands and waiting to meet our new baby girl. That is a wonderful memory. I let my bff come in for a bit, too, then she ran to get her and my dh some food.

And the pressure just got stronger, and my body was pushing. I was still able to breathe through it, though for a little bit longer, and when I was just pushing and I felt like I could poop out the baby any time, I told her I thought the doctor should probably come and check me, she was thinking the same thing.

So he came back in and asked me just to give a little push, and yup, sure enough he told me she had hair and to try to breathe through so as not to push so hard for just a minute so he could change the bed bottom

I didn't even care about being in the stupid laying down position then, she was so far down and perfectly ready to come out it didn't make a bit of difference. I pushed once, knew her head was starting to crown, pushed again, out came her head, then they reminded me to go slow and let her come out , which I was able to do, and there she was! 3 pushes! The cord was wrapped around her neck, (explains a lot of things) and so they cut it soon, which I was totally ok with at that point. Then they handed me my baby girl. (No tearing, barely any swelling, a little bit of a skid mark, but it's nothing really. I can't believe how fine I feel!)

She was so covered in vernix, it was amazing! And she was so small! She was very mucusy, so I actually wanted her suctioned well. She came out pretty fast overall once she actually got down there, so I don't think it all got squeezed out.
(She also choked a few times and puked the first night, too. I had a bulb syringe and actually used it a few times.)

She was born at 5:45pm, 7-19-08. 7lb1oz. 19.5" long. So little!

Wow, I just realized how long this is getting.

Anyway, things went exceptionally well. I had planned a UC, and never thought I would go to a hospital ever again. And while under most any other circumstance I wouldn't have I am very very happy with my decision to go. I listened to myself and made the informed choice when the time came.
I was there on my terms, and I was also there knowing that making the decision to go would make it necessary for me to pick my battles. I think that made all of the difference.

I was open and vocal on my feelings, had a fantastic nurse, even if we didn't agree about hospital/homebirth on some issues, we had a great dialogue and I just enjoyed talking to her.

I was pleased that I didn't have to fight with them not to do anything I wouldn't have wanted to do. They were all overall great.

And I am still fully supportive of UC. homebirth, natural birth, all of it in a big bad way, but I am more appreciative of other circumstances in which a well informed decision can make me in wonder and awe of the magic of a well done epidural.

I feel wonderful, the baby is a marathon nurser and I certainly hope my milk comes in sooner rather than later because she's nursing for HOURS and my nipples are sore I got a fantastic night's sleep last night, though. I am so glad to have been able to go straight into nursing while laying down and sleeping!

Anyway, it wasn't the way I planned to birth, but I am SO HAPPY with the way it went.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

July 16, 1999

9 years ago today, I became a mother for the first time.

Happy birthday to my beautiful, brilliant, amazing Maxwell.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Monday, July 7, 2008

Lazy Summer Days

The boys have been remarkably good about the fact that we're not doing much of anything every day. We're going to go down to the pool later, but that's about it.

I made a chiro appointment for Thursday. Here's hoping this baby girl will turn and all will be well. Keep those turn baby turn thoughts coming my way. I know she can turn as late as me going into labor and all, so I can wait till then. But I also have to think of the very real possibility that she may not turn. Which I will just assume means that there is a very good reason (placenta issue, short cord, etc) and she knows just what she needs to be doing.
If that's the case then I will march myself into the hospital and get a necessary c-section with the best of them. I just really hope to avoid it.

Oh! Another thing I am excited about is the Essure procedure. I am going to start looking into OBs that do this procedure AS SOON AS this baby is out. We KNOW this is our last baby, and Essure seems almost magical for it's effectiveness and much lower side effects than a tubal or even a vasectomy.

I also made an appointment with WIC, which we should qualify for. I have NO issue with getting that type of assistance when it's needed. I don't understand the mentality of refusing assistance.
You know what? I have been working pretty steadily for the last 15 years of my life, paying into these government funds the entire time. That's why they're there, yk?

Anyway, WIC will help with some staples, and any help with the price of everything having gone up so much.

I'm also planning to give the coupon thing another go. I know I can do it, I'm just so darned disorganized sometimes and get overwhelmed. Which is funny, cause I'm awesome at helping other people organize their stuff. :p

I'm also going to start planning my DONA PP doula training for the fall. I'm looking forward to it.

Friday, July 4, 2008

3 weeks and a day to edd.

It's completely nuts to think that tomorrow I will be term. I can have this baby at any moment, of course any time in the next 5 weeks or so.

This is exciting, starting to feel just a little nervous about going through labor again.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

June 24, 2005

3 years ago today I married the most wonderful person I could ever imagine spending my life with.

Happy Anniversary to my dear husband!

Monday, June 23, 2008

RIP George Carlin

One of my favorites of his pieces:

Pro-Life is Anti-Woman. (By posting the title I'm giving you the content, don't watch if it's going to offend you)
"You know why? Cause chickens are decent people!"

Damn straight, George. I'm glad you had the BALLS to speak it like it is, and in such a way, too!

Wordle

This is a Wordle that I did from the Father's Day post, I really like it.


Saturday, June 21, 2008

Still Alive

I realized I hadn't actually posted anything after my whiny post. Sorry! I meant to post something much more pleasant soon after.

The kids are playing with the Spore Creature Creator. They are having fun with it. I am looking forward to the game itself! It doesn't come out until September, though.

But it is on my Wishlist, so you know, just in case... Haha. Kidding. It's a low priority on my wishlist. ;)

We rented The Golden Compass, which I am undecided on whether to let the kids watch later this evening. I'm going to read a little more about the "fantasy violence" that caused the PG-13 rating.
I think that if Max wanted to read the His Dark Materials trilogy at this point I would encourage him, so it doesn't make any sense really to deny the movie, though I still need to find out a little more. Of course I would prefer he read the first book instead. Just cause the books are EXCELLENT, and I know that the movie will pale in comparison.

I've let the kids watch PG-13 stuff on occasion, because all "fantasy violence" and other themes are not created equally.

Take Stardust for example. It's got a PG-13 rating, but overall? I had no real issues with it, and let the kids watch it after I initially screened it. But Princess Mononoke will be another few years before I even let my oldest watch it. The themes in that movie are what are too intense for them, more than the violent scenes. I could block out the only really graphic part towards the beginning, but I still think there are a lot of things that would be disturbing to them at their age and maturity levels.

I hate that bird. SOOOOO much. My friend should be here later to take it away. Thank goodness. I'm done with it. (Scream, scream, scream, scream = my sudden and horrible background "music").

I hate to suck so much for my kids, but I really think it's time for me to take a nap for a while. Ugh. 5 hours of mediocre sleep doesn't work for me. I wish I could sleep like a normal person again.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Whining & Bitching

I have been trying to stay positive, but right now I am going to just let it all out.

I am freaking miserable. I have been able to do nothing but sleep, lay down, try not to puke, try to keep from crying, etc, for days.
I haven't even managed to go visit my friend who had surgery. Hell, I haven't even spoken to her in days, other than a "yes, I'm alive" text.
I don't want to talk to anyone, I don't want to do anything or go anywhere.

I just want to stop feeling like utter crap all the livelong day.

I sleep so much. It's not even right. I am nauseated most of the time. Like now, and forever.

I want to stay in my hermit hole till this baby is here. I HAD to leave the house today (for literally the first time since what? Saturday?) for having dinner with the kids. I had to fight off tears all the way there and back. Nausea, so freaking hot. Tried to walk around Target for half an hour while waiting to pick them up, and spent the whole time worried about puking, sweating horribly, with extremely uncomfortable Braxton-Hicks contractions, trying not to cry.
People were looking at me funny.

And I just don't care. I resent anything that requires me to put on clothes or be in a non horizontal position for more than a few minutes. The couch is my best friend.

Grocery shopping on Saturday was the most horrible buying spree ever. It was all processed crap cause I cannot manage to cook real food now. Canned ravioli, canned soup, ramen, sandwich stuff, ice cream. I didn't even buy fresh produce except for a couple of mangoes and some peaches.

I also hate whining all the damn time. That's all I feel like I do.
Chris is SO awesome, he is the most supportive, attentive, and patient person, and I am so very grateful for him. He has made this all bearable for me. But I feel so bad for him having to listen to me. Even turning over or sitting up means horrible groans and ouches from me. I feel like such a wimp.

I mean, I know I am growing a whole human being in there, but still, seriously. People do this all the flipping time.

Sigh.... My life online is pain free, which is why I have chosen to primarily only communicate through the internet recently. I can focus on other things, rather than my misery.

Anyway, that is all. I felt like getting it out there. Maybe I'll feel better soon. I doubt it, though.

Baby Toys

There are tons of icky plastic toys out there, but I don't like that sort of thing for babies. They chew on them like you wouldn't believe and I don't think phthalates and such are great for chewing. And how many toys do babies actually need? Not many! Just a few interesting things to look at and drool on. They are as happy with a washrag with frozen water on a corner to chew on as anything else when they are teething.

And so, in that vein, I'm going to post what I think are some of the best baby toys out there!



This is the Bonita by Haba. It's colorful and full of chewy fun! And it's awfully girly and cute, which totally gets me every time.







This is probably my favorite, cause it's a whole set for a really great price. Sassy has a really great line of wooden infant toys that I really like, and they are all very reasonably priced. I plan to get a few of these if nothing else.












I love this thing, too! It's another one by the German company Haba. Look at its bright simplicity, and how wonderful must that be to chew on while teething for a baby?







To be honest, I love nearly all of the toys put out by Haba, though they are kind of expensive.

Oh, and my love for Vulli natural rubber toys from France is pretty deep, too. I NEEEED this little thing:

This is one of the Chan Pie Gnon teethers from Vulli. Hehe! Chan Pie Gnon! Get it? This is Pink Pie. And I would really like one of these for Madeleine.
Sophie the Giraffe is Vulli's most famous toy apparently, but screw the giraffe, I want this one!











As I said before, babies don't need many toys. And I would rather put more money into something made with certified sustainable products, safe paints, are positively lead free and plastic free, so my own baby can chew and drool to her heart's delight and I can keep my peice of mind.

Monday, June 16, 2008

This made me cry :)

In a very happy way.
These women have been in love with each other for 55 years. They are now 87 and 84, and they were just married legally in the state of California.
This is simply the sweetest picture.

And now, as fair warning, I am going to rant, and probably piss you off if you're religious, so stop now, or don't say I didn't warn you.

How can any government tell someone who they are allowed to be with and who they can't? Based on religious ideals?

The government that thinks it can do that is a government that has far too much control over my life. And our government does. I applaud any state for standing up and doing the right thing.

And how DARE those people go out there with their self righteousness and their bullshit signs and tell someone that it is "morally" wrong to have the same legal status for their relationship. Screw you. I don't have "morals", but I do have ethics, I didn't have morals shoved down my throat to make me act a certain way.

I do the right thing because I am a good person, not for the sake of your ridiculous imaginary friend, thank you very much, you self righteous twats.

To look at these women and to think that there is something wrong with their love for one another and their right to their commitment getting the same legal status as hetero couples is something that is unethical.

Where does the time go?

34 weeks & 2 days. Only 40 days to go, my counter says. Wow. All of a sudden this last bit is flying by!

Things to do:
  • Clean the house - It's a never-ending thing! It's never perfect, which is what I want. And I achieved perfect while nesting with #2, seriously. I went all Fly Lady on that shit and I shined my sink 3x's a day the last week or so cause there wasn't anything else left I could possibly do. I had even painted the rooms in the house! Hurting and miserable this time doesn't allow for that.
  • Make food for the freezer - lasagna, whatever else? Casseroles of various types. I REALLY WISH we could afford a small chest freezer. ARGH!
  • Laundry- been pretty good about keeping up, but never have enough quarters on hand! Have many loads to do right now, all sorted already, but no quarters. Frustrating!
  • The Back Bathroom of DOOM - We've pretty much abandoned it to the cats. We haven't even used the shower in there for months, we use the front bathroom. The litter box is HUGE, and takes up so much space. I hate walking around it to the bathtub/toilet part of the bathroom, so only the front part gets used at all. I will definitely want the shower and all available for labor and afterwards. Don't know where else we could put the litter box, though, and with only one box for 2 cats we can't really go smaller. Here is the monstrosity we have for them.
  • Clean the hall closets? Haha. The front one is FILLED with crap that I want to get rid of but have not had the energy to deal with posting on Craigslist to sell or Freecycle to just make it go. So back into the closet it went. The front closet is quite bothersome. Then I opened the back hall closet and realized it's in about the same shape. Argh!
  • Our closet - It' s becoming as filled with crap as before. Argh! Again!
  • The kids' room - Oy. That's a project for them this weekend. They do ok cleaning it and it's really not that bad. I wish the rest of the house were as easy to clean. Everything has a place in their room. Makes me jealous. That's my goal with the rest of the house.
  • Living room - bookshelves, books, there is still the giant pile of books next to the couch that needs to GO, etc.
Ok, I realize I should be cleaning instead of blogging, ha!

Hatred of the clutter! It doesn't matter if I can't see it, it's still there and I know it. Just as bothersome.

I will be doing some cleaning shortly, then try to go swim for a bit.

Things left to obtain:
  • Birthing Ball - Need this! My bestest buddy during labor.
  • Fish Scale - Wish I knew someone who fished often and had one I could just borrow

I know there's more, but mostly I have everything or it's being shipped to me today.

Friday, June 13, 2008

An Early Father's Day Post

I am married to the most wonderful person, and I am so happy to be having a baby with him. Our 3 year wedding anniversary is coming up and we've been together for well over 5 years now. I can't believe how happy I still am every day.

He's been a fantastic, wonderful parent to my kids for the last several years, so already a reason to celebrate him as a father, but this year is special and different, since we are only a short way away from the birth of our first child together. I am so happy that he will get to experience the birth of his daughter, and feel what it's like to have all of those firsts in her life that he didn't get to see in my boys' lives.

I didn't want any more children for a long time, something he knew came with the territory of our relationship and marriage. When I worked through all of my feelings on it and realized I did want another child, and that I did want another child with him, he was more than happy about it. A little freaked when within a month later we had an oops that was handed to him on a peed on stick, but still happy even through his stark terror.

He has been a wonderful, loving, caring partner to me.

We have had our moments, of course, and no relationship is perfect all of the time, but I can say that I know that we can work through anything. I want to be with him to grow old together, I am so glad he is my husband.

And I am so happy to be able to tell him not just Happy Father's Day, but to be able to tell him that in a different way this year, as we prepare ourselves and our family for a new baby, one that we have created together.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Fantastic! An Update.

So, my friend had her surgery today. Her boyfriend just called to update me. All went well. Doctor is sure it's not cancer of any sort, just endometriosis-y stuff.

She's awake from anesthesia, though probably wishing she weren't per her boyfriend, very groggy still.

So, glad all is well. She should be out of the hospital Friday barring anything unforeseen, and will be staying at her parents' till she's more mobile. (Her only bathroom at her own house is upstairs, so she needs to be able to get up and down stairs before going home!) She was a little apprehensive about staying at her mom's cause her mom is VERY excited to be able to take care of her after surgery, heh. She and her mom are super close and her mom is great, but she's worried that it will be too much attention after a couple of days :)

But anyway, all is well, so that's great!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Oh, thank heavens, they got there just in time.

Woman gives birth in SUV story

Whatever would have happened to that mother and child if the paramedics would not have arrived?! I hate news stories like this. This particular blog is also not very fond of them, which is why I read it. They cover everything that is considered an "emergency" childbirth.

On to my rant.

I don't understand why the paramedics would need to "assist".
If the baby was half way out don't you think the mother could have managed on her own at that point? What, exactly, did the paramedics do when got there to "assist"? Was the mother suddenly unable to push on her own? Did they have to come in to hover around cause that's the only way anyone ever seems to give birth on television or in a standard hospital birth, with a million people standing around telling her to stop trusting her own body and listen to them? It's like asking the audience at the Price is Right. They'll confuse you and make you doubt yourself.

I mean, I really hope that the paramedics would know enough and respect childbirth enough to stand back, tell her she is doing fine, and encourage her to keep doing such a great job. Perhaps help catch the baby if she didn't have someone there with her to do that.
Fortunately I think paramedics often have a better sense of that than your standard doctor or nurse in a hospital setting.

I have read the tales of several planned homebirth or hospital births turnedunassisted birth at home in which they offered to help if they could, then left the family well at home if that was what the family wished. No one panicked or got transferred unless they wanted to be.

Anyway, the way it's framed in new stories annoys me. That is all.

It's 6:39 and I still have not come close to sleep yet.

The end.

Hoo boy!

I've been on my bb, and someone in the food forum posted a thread called
"Boning Fresh Salmon"
Every time I see it I start giggling.

My friend sent out a Twitter last week with a company wide email he got. Someone had apparently "dislocated" their cell phone.

Oh, I find it all amusing! Of course, it is 6 am, and there's been no sleep yet for me. Of course I find it all amusing!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

I have a lot of pictures I need to upload, and that I want to post, like me all dressed up in my vinyl maternity pants for a party I went to Saturday. Heh.
And I cut my hair short again. I prefer it short, I really do. It's so much easier to deal with.

And right now I am so HAPPY! http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=91126460

YAY YAY YAY YAY! Obama!

Argh.

So, I'm waiting on my best friend to pick me up. We're going to hang out, as we usually do at least once a week.

She's been having some major scary medical stuff, and is now scheduled for surgery June 11th. I am SO glad they moved it up.
She is having an oophorectomy, where they take out an ovary (they are planning on just removing the right one right now). She has a huge scary cyst on her right, HUGE, SCARY. And a smaller one on her left. It's been a matter of getting the surgery scheduled without insurance, etc, for her, with her doctors telling her that it's very urgent that she has this surgery done as soon as possible because the cyst could burst and kill her... Thanks for being so helpful! But they won't help unless you give them craploads of money! Argh. Stupid insurance crap in this country really upsets me.

Anyway, she went to another doc last week, and they did bloodwork to look for elevated CA 125, and that came back positive, which she just found out yesterday. What this actually means, she doesn't know, but at least they moved the surgery up. It's not necessarily a sign for ovarian cancer, it could mean a number of things including endometriosis, etc, but the not knowing is still scary in the meantime.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Updated Blog Links

I finally decided to take some time in updating my blogroll and divided them up into categories. Still have quite a bit to do on it, but a good part is done.

I read a LOT of blogs.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Birth Preparation

I know there aren't a whole lot of things I *need* for the birth, I mean, we'd manage with a towel and our teeth for gnawing through the cord if it came down to it.

But I do plan to get a few things together before hand. The main things I really want to have on hand are the herbs and tinctures. I really really need to start the EPO and RRL and all of those things. I can't believe I have neglected even buying RRL tea. Going to get some before the weekend and take it with me.
I really want the herbs and such for bleeding. Just in case I hemmorhage again. How awful would that be to have my perfect birth, then have to go to the ER because of bleeding. That would piss me off a whole lot.

I think I decided to once again not to bother with a tub. My last few births I would have not used a tub. I had one to use the last time, and it never got set up, and the entire thought of it sounded hideous to me. I don't think it will be different. If it is, oh well.

Standing in the shower for a bit with water on my lower back helped last time, till they made me get out since I kept falling asleep between contractions. They didn't want me to fall. I hated them so much for making me get out. I understand their concern, but this time? Guess what? No one there to tell me what to do! I'll stand there all I want if I am so inclined! Ha!

I want a cheap shower curtain for under old sheets on the bed, some chux pads so I don't have to do towels (special matching happy birthday to me towels, remember?), an aspirator, and a digital fish scale and sling for it. Everything else? Meh, I think I will survive with or without it. There are probably a few other things that I am forgetting, but that's the gist of it.

This evening the kids had some questions about meconium and what happens if the baby does poop before birth, can that happen, etc? Max asked if I was having an unassisted birth. I told him I was in the sense that I will know how to have this baby, my body knows and the baby knows, but that I would have assistance from the people who will be there and love me and support me. I told him about how the Emergency Childbirth book says that any reasonably intelligent 8 year old could assist in the birth of a baby. Oh goodness. The boys' eyes lit up! They are now wanting to cut the cord at the least, but are ready to help out with the birth all by themselves :) I love those kids SO MUCH. It's indescribable. I am so happy they are getting excited about the birth and new sister. It's taken a while, but they are both seeming excited about it now.

Gosh, it doesn't look like it, but I did manage a little cleaning this morning. Nesting! Where are you?!? Where is my energy? Where did it go?

Neat Internet & Blog Finds

Here are just a few things that have caught my eye recently. I love the internet, I really do.

Things that make me go "squee!":

I really really want a Wonderwash and Spin Dryer. They make so much sense!
I would LOVE to have both of these items. I would find it MUCH easier to ease up on my paper towel usage and go almost exclusively to towels and rags. Maybe I can get some cloth diapers and just add to my collection as it goes. I can have a goal of exclusive cloth by 6 months IF I can get these! They would for both come out to under $200 total, even with shipping, I'm sure.
I found these via a post on one of my favorite blogs, Treehugging Family. Peggy and Jennifer are always posting great ideas and discussions and cool things.

I am finally going to bust out the ice cream maker next week for the weekend. And the first thing I am making is this divine strawberry frozen yogurt from Simply Recipes. I can't wait to try it! And in the 2nd bowl I'm going to make coconut milk ice cream. Mmm....

I adore these robot animals by Ann P. Smith, via Craftzine.com. They are SO NEAT.

I want a house like this: Beauvoir Residence by Bruce Bolander Architect, via materialicious. I would love to do something like this using shipping containers.
I also really love strawbale and cob houses, too. I am not sure if I could do that type of material here in the swamp, though.
Something else I need to look into is how to work some sort of cooling system into a green home. Passive just doesn't seem like it would work here. It doesn't cool down at night, and the humidity stays in the high 90%s from this point of the year through September, at least. Which is another reason I am not sure if strawbale or cob could work here. Mold is a big concern.
And whichever house I end up building, I have wanted concrete counters and floors for forever! And look at these floors! They are magnificent!
If I could do a strawbale, I adore this house: Drew Residence, One World Design Architecture, via RiverWired. The RiverWired article is also from the same Jennifer at TreeHuggingFamily. She's a pro blogger and writes for several of my favorite blogs.

I really really want a set of these to frame for the baby's room: Nerdy Baby ABC Flashcards!!!

The internet abounds with cool stuff!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I've been sucking at posting, so here's a quick one.

I am now over 30 weeks, which is just crazy. I am excited, though.

I have been packing for this weekend, and determined to have a great time and not be miserably hot the whole time. We'll see how that goes. I can bitch about the heat the rest of the time, but if I know what I'm getting into and doing it to myself, then I have no room to bitch.

Project Spring Cleaning seems to be a wash. It is chaotic with no way out that I can see.

My cereal obsession has evolved, like a pokemon. It's gone from Lucky Charms to Cocoa Pebbles. Can't imagine what the 3rd evolution will be.

I can't stop yawning. It's annoying. I should probably go to bed soon. But I won't, I know me. More likely I will fall asleep for a while on the couch.

The End. More actual content coming soon.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Update of Random

I haven't been posting regularly for a few reasons, #1 is I have been on the mothering boards a lot lately, and then trying to catch up with my rss feeds. (I sub to 126 blogs currently and some of the blogs, like BoingBoing, Consumerist and TreeHugger are pretty prolific in their posts).

Another reason is it's frustrating to post so often to next to no one.

And there's just so much I'd like to post, but I'm lazy sometimes.

So, where to start? The baby shifted so the SPD pain is significantly better the last few days, even though my back and stomach muscles hurt.

We spent the weekend being lazy and at the pool, which was very nice. But the house, oh I can't even deal with it. I plan to clean some in a little bit cause I feel a bit better today than I have been.

I ate too many carbs over the weekend and woke up feeling awful yesterday :( Concentrating on upping my protein intake and no more processed carbs like that. UGH.

I have wanted to post about thrift stores finds, but haven't yet. I also took some new pics yesterday of my pregnant self and want to put those up soon, but haven't cause both sets of batteries need to be recharged.

I don't want to talk about Mother's Day, other than to say I totally give up. It's been nothing but utter disappointment to me since my first Mother's Day while pregnant 9 years ago. I am hurt, depressed, angry, all of those things. I'm going to give up on this. My kids were awesome, at least. Made me GREAT cards and of course make me feel so loved every single day. SO loved.

We implemented pizza night on Friday and making a note here, Huge Success. I'll post specifics later on. I'll probably just copy and paste a post I made on Mothering earlier.

Been watching Season 2 of Dexter. LOVE it, just as good if not better than the first season. On the edge of my seat with it right now. Nail Biting nerves. Is it wrong to be rooting for the sociopathic serial killer?

I may get to work part time again doing the same thing that I was soon. That would ROCK hardcore! Money is tight and stressful right now, and it sucks.

What, what? In the butt. I said, What , what? In the butt!

Have found some cool things at thrift stores. That's why we purged our books, you know. To buy more. Ha. I've had to have bought at least a dozen since we purged. But I love books, reading, as do Chris and Max, and Miles is getting there with his reading, too.

Both kids are homeschooling and thrilled about it, as am I. VERY happy with it. Wish I had better communication with the ex and his spouse, but I am happy with the set up. They are not doing the homeschooling personally, they have someone hired full time with all 4 of the younger kids in their household. Each kid got to make their own decision on whether they wanted to. Max was the longest holdout and he's just been doing this for about 2 weeks.
I've wanted hsing for them from day 1. I am a big believer that homeschooling with a committed family is by far the best option for kids. However you do it, unschooling (my preference), curriculum based (VERY strongly pro-secular, though), co-op schooling with other like minded families. Homeschooling comes in all shapes and flavors, and peoples silly questions about it bother me. Had to field the mil on Mother's Day about socialization, etc. Argh.
I wish people who don't really want to be educated about a subject feels it's ok to give me the 3rd degree with no intention of really listening. There's a ton of different subjects this can apply to in my experience.

I really want to go see Iron Man this week when the check gets here.

I am going to the Kerrville Folk Festival with a friend this year. Yay! Primitive camping at 7 months! I just know what life will be like for a while after the baby, and getting to laze around, sleep during the hot day, go down to the river to swim and cool off, then stay up late around the fires listening to music and chilling out? I can do that for 3 days! Unfortunately I don't think Chris can come :(

We really need to plan a weekend thing for just us before the baby gets here. I was hoping hoping hoping to be able to afford to go to New Orleans for a long weekend and stay at the B&B where we spent our honeymoon, but financially that just won't happen. Sigh... Maybe just a trip to Austin to hang with friends, that would be nice, too.

We should plan that now. Maybe a midweek trip would be best. Who knows, I need to look at a calendar.

I also need to finish my list for the (bwahahahahaha!!!! I just realized, since i didn't want to call it a shower I was about to type "baby bbq"! Hahahaha!) Baby shower... (cause I guess there's not a better term offhand!) and get it to my best friend so she can get to work on invites. She's been on me, and I've worked on it, just need to finish it.

And really at this point I'm really hoping that no one else gets onesies! We have SO MANY :) I love thrift stores.
I am going ask people for things like frozen meals, dinner, laundry, dishes, those types of gifts :) Those are the best type! I do still have a registry for those who really want it, and there's some stuff I on there I wouldn't mind receiving at all but we can live without them. Well, except for diapers and more bottles! I'm so glad I was able to get the basics already, though.

What else? I'm sure there's more but this is turning into a long random post.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Ha! I Knew It!

Ok, I am making this post mainly to be able to share it in Google Reader with all of you fine folks.
Is anyone surprised by this?

Why Conservatives are Happier than Liberals

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Wow. I'm already 28 weeks and 4 days along. This has gone by so quickly!

There's been a bit of a change regarding where we plan to have the baby, and I am very happy with this decision.

I never thought I would feel like I could be one of those women who trusted themselves enough to have an unassisted childbirth at home, but I realized that I AM just that capable and awesome, and I really NEVER EVER EVER want to go back to a hospital unnecessarily. THAT is what is dangerous to both me and the baby. Not birthing at home in a safe place with me and my husband who absolutely believe in my body's ability to birth a baby.

So, we are planning a medically unassisted homebirth for the birth of our daughter in July.

I feel so much relief having made this decision. I have no more anxiety about birthing like I did with the thought of "having" to go to a hospital. I just couldn't bring myself to do that. AND the more it goes, the more I really like the idea of not even having a midwife there.

I will be the one trusting myself and my body completely to have this baby. I will have my dh there, and perhaps another person or two as "an extra set of hands", but that's all we need.

I am not concerned about hemmoraging either. I feel fully confident that if that happens we will be able to handle it with no issues. Education is key, and I will be fully prepared for that circumstance, or any other that could come up.

I really like the Emergency Childbirth: A Manual that a lot of people recommend keeping on hand and reading through. In it the author says that any reasonably intelligent 8 year old can assist in the birth of a baby. Well, heck, if Chris isn't around, then Max can help ;) He'll have even just turned 9!

I am excited about the birth now, not dreading it. And that will let me have a peaceful wonderful experience. I'm ready to meet my new baby now!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Coffee!!


Ok, so I finally opened the bag of coffee we got at Costco and I think it deserves it's very own post. It is magnificent!

I have been using previously ground beans for a while, and no matter what type I have used, the best of them has been meh. But I figured I could use my Vita-Mix to grind the beans until I get a good grinder so we bought whole bean coffee.

Wow, it is so good! This is my favorite coffee hands down. And for $13 for a 2.2lb bag? Heck yeah!

A Quick Update

I haven't updated in several days, maybe even nearly a week. I figure I'll catch up this week. I was certainly happy to read about Blogger's new feature of being able to auto post by setting up times.
I felt like I was a little too post happy last week and I think this will let me do more posting like I would like without bombarding anyone.

It's late and we just finished watching another episode of Dexter. I love that show. We're 3 episodes into the 2nd season now and it's still fantastic.

We went to Galveston yesterday for a birthday party and that was great, I will post pictures soon. Here's a sneak peak:



They were fine in the water (I got in a bit, too and it was nice and warm) but out of the water in the wind and those boys were cold and wet.
It was in the mid 80s here yesterday, but that's almost cold for a TX beach. I can never figure out people from other areas of the country that think 75 is balmy and go swimming in a pool, that's insane to me! I think my kids are the same way. :)

It's been a good weekend, and I have made my to do list for the week (and really, there's not a whole lot on there I can come up with), and am looking forward to getting the rest of the house in order. It's almost there!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Grrrrr....

Due to jackassery in my apartment complex, management is being forced to have the recycling container removed on May 1st.
They made a flier at the beginning of this month stating that if people could not keep food and other inappropriate garbage out of the container that they would have to have it removed, because the service we had was unable to pick it up like that.

Guess what? Apparently there are one too many dipshits that cannot use the handy dandy recycling container in the proper way, so out it has to go. ARGH!

It occurs to me...

That I should post something new exciting and different soon. Like something fluffy but that does not involve my laundry or my dwarf hamster. Hmmm.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

On the most recent This American Life, which is playing in the background right now they just used a snippet of one of my favorite pieces of music in there.
Comptine D'un Autre Été: L'après-midi, my absolute favorite piano piece ever. It was composed by Yann Tiersen and was used in the movie Amélie.
Love that song. LOVE. I love the entire music track to Amélie, but that is my favorite.

Chicken with Mushroom Cream Sauce

I mentioned yesterday that I would be trying this out for dinner. Wow, it is so good.
I'm reposting this from Simply Recipes with additional notes of how I did it. Italics are mine.

Ingredients

1 5-pound roasting chicken, cut into serving pieces (I used 5 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves)
Flour, salt and pepper
1 cup grapeseed oil, or canola oil (I used canola, and only about 1/2 cup since I didn't have as much chicken)
Butter
1/4 cup rich chicken broth
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced (I used baby portabellas, NOM!)
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper

Method

1 Put a cup of flour, a teaspoon of salt and half a teaspoon of pepper in a brown paper bag. Piece by piece, put a piece of chicken in the bag and shake to coat the chicken with flour mixture.

2 Preheat the oven to 350°F. On the stovetop, in a large frying pan, heat oil to medium high heat. Place the chicken pieces in the pan. Watch the oil carefully, you don't want the oil to be so hot as to burn the chicken, you just want to lightly brown it. Brown the chicken pieces on all sides, turning when necessary.

3 Butter a roasting pan generously. Arrange the chicken pieces in it, pour broth over it, and bake at 350°F until the chicken is tender and cooked, about 40-50 minutes for pieces from a 5-pound chicken. You know that the chicken is done by poking a thigh with a meat fork (the thigh meat is dark meat and takes longer to cook than white breast meat). If pink or red juice runs out of the hole made by the fork, the chicken is not done. If only clear juice runs out, the chicken is done. (Since I used the boneless, skinless chicken, it only took about 20 minutes, the time it took me to make the rest of it, to cook through)

4 About 20 minutes before the chicken is expected to be done, start cooking the onions and mushrooms. In the same frying pan as was used to cook the chicken, empty the pan of all but 2 Tbsp of oil. Add the onions to the pan and sauté on medium heat until softened. Add the crushed garlic clove and the mushrooms and cook until mushrooms are no longer crisp. Remove and discard the garlic, and add the sour cream and the heavy cream to the onions and mushrooms. Lower the heat. Keep warm, but do not boil. Salt and pepper to taste. (I lost the garlic clove in there, so it stayed in)

5 When the chicken is done, remove from oven. Serve on a platter with the mushroom sauce spooned over it, or served on the side.

Serves 6 to 8.

Serve with noodles, rice, or Spanish Rice. (I lightly sauteed several large handfuls of baby spinach in just a little olive oil and served the chicken and sauce over that, with a large slice of sourdough bread on the side)


This was a very quick and yummy recipe and I will definitely make it again. We also have plenty of leftovers for tomorrow's lunch.

The Story of My Stuff

I have my 3rd load of laundry in the washer, so I am pleased with that. I need to pull out one old towel from the bag to keep for my hair dying purposes and get rid of the rest. That will cut down substantially on the pile of laundry I have to look at.

For my birthday back in March I think I had mentioned that I received some human moneys in the form of a BB&B gift card and an AmEX gift card, so I bought matching towels for both bathrooms and some new nice sheets for our bed.

And so ALL of the old towels can go, minus one for hair dying and other things that may stain. I need to pull one out and get rid of the rest.

I feel so grown up with my nice sheets and matching towels! Of course I haven't opened the sheets yet. I was waiting to rearrange the room (done), have it completely organized and perfect (almost) and to get a new comforter from IKEA to put the duvet onto (not yet), THEN we can open the sheets. And I haven't used any of the new towels for our bathroom, not until I battle our bathroom and win will I even allow myself to wash them.
I also bought a cool pack of bamboo utensils on my birthday with my gift cards and just opened them to use one this week.
I did start using our new canisters last week, and once we buy a coffee grinder I will finally bust out the new French press :)
I like things to be just so before I allow myself to enjoy anything new, so it's something I get to work for and get a lot of mental reward for. I think this is one of the reasons that I can live with only the rare treat of something new (to me) or even brand new, is because I really make sure to anticipate it, appreciate it, and prepare for it.
I think a lot of people take "things" for granted. I really try not to do that. I try to take care of my things, only get what I really really like and will find joy in for a long time to come, and take my time with them. The more it goes, the less impulse buying I do, and the less I regret any purchases I make.

Once again, I highly recommend watching The Story of Stuff if you haven't already.

In what ways do you treat yourself? Do you appreciate your stuff? Or am I just weird like that?

Sean Bell

That those men were simply aquitted in this case is very disturbing and upsetting to me.

This has me almost to the point of tears. That one officer, ONE, could fire 31 bullets into one unarmed man and be aquitted with NO charges of wrongdoing is beyond my comprehension.
That the lawyers for the officers would stoop so low as to portray the surviving victims as dishonest shouldn't surprise me, that's the name of the game, right? It all just makes me sick.

Even if it all went down exactly as the officers say, still having one officer fire 31 bullets makes me think that he shouldn't be allowed to carry a gun, he should undergo some major evaluation, and for others' safety he should be taken off of the streets as an officer of the law. I do not think that is an unreasonable course of action. I don't think that officer can be trusted to act in the best interest of those he has sworn to protect.

But no. Nothing like that.

My heart goes out to the Bell family and the other victims of the shooting. I cannot imagine how painful that verdict must have been to hear.

The Great Purge of 08 Redux

Wow. I am overwhelmed with it all.

I have been having crippling pain from SPD the last few nights, and I am very limited in my physical abilities. This is driving me nuts. I can be totally lazy sometimes, but when I am ready to clean, that means that it's going to be clean before I am done with it. And being so physically limited is really like torture to me. I just want to get down and dirty with a toothbrush and some grout!
But this is a post about progress, so I will stop lamenting and focus on what I am actually getting done, bit by bit.

Today we did get some things done, and that was to rearrange our room, and set up the crib and get the baby stuff somewhat organized and put away better so it isn't just a big scary pile like it was.
We decided to leave a side off of the crib and leave the plastic on the mattress. The cats will deem it absolutely necessary to explore this new and exciting thing. If it's like this they cannot scratch the wood trying to jump over and into it, and the mattress is covered so won't get dirty.

It's not the best thing, but it's a vast improvement. The white thing facing the wall is a small rolling cart I got for baby clothes and such. I have to leave it against the wall facing the wrong way with something on top of it to try to deter the cats. It's not made to hold very much, it's not very sturdy at all. I didn't expect it to be when I got it. It was cheap, light, and pretty much all I needed while the baby was in our room. I didn't think about the globulous lumps of curiosity that live with us, too. I'm glad those creatures don't have opposable thumbs or we would be doomed. It's bad enough when they deadbolt you out of your own home (yes, dear Midna, that would be you).

You may remember how it was before all of this:

And now:
From the front:


I also took many pictures of other problem areas in the house (read: the entire rest of the house), and will post those as I tackle them. I figure visuals with before and after will be good for my resolve. I may not be able to the whirlwind of cleaning activity that I am used to, but isn't "slow and steady wins the race" the way that one goes? At least I tell myself that, since this is so foreign to my normal MO. :)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Tired

Today has been a very nice, but long day.

I didn't get to sleep until about 4:30 last night, but managed to get up around 10 and make it out to the farmer's market around 11.

Today's find were:
hydroponic tomatoes - $5
a huge English cucumber - $4
some goat cheese with chimchurri mixed in - $4
a dozen eggs - $3.50
So, that was what? $16.50, not too bad, considering I paid $4 for one cucumber, but it was delicious, and the fluff-rat agrees. Really, the eggs are the main thing I really want to be able to purchase every week there. There is a lot of produce there, but it's mainly onions (holy cow there are a lot of people selling onions), still a lot of "winter" type greens, and now our strawberry season is over :( It hasn't even started for most of the country, and ours is over and gone for another year.

Then we went to Costco. Wow. I love that place. I'm working towards more local food, etc, but I would have a hard time giving up my Costco membership.
This is what we got today:
12 lbs of baking soda (for making cleaning supplies)
2 gallons of white vinegar (for making cleaning supplies)
2 lbs of shelled pecan halves
1qt 1/2 & 1/2
1qt heavy cream
3 half gallons organic soymilk
1lb baby portabellas
1lb organic baby spinach
1lb organic spring greens
6lb organic tofu
6lb pears
10 lbs onions
2.2lbs Ruta Maya Organic coffee beans
2 loaves sourdough (they were still warm and wonderful with the goat cheese)
2lb strawberries
4.5lbs organic raisin bran cereal
1 pair jeans for Chris
30oz Kalamata Olive dip
12 pack 100% recycled papertowels
2lb cashew granola-ish type of stuff (best snack food ever)

And you know what the total was? With tax it was $131.24.
You just can't beat that.

Love me some Costco, really I do.
I read a lot of blogs from serious couponers and CVSers and comparatively this may seem like a lot, but overall this works much better for us because this is what we eat. I rarely ever see anything with a coupon and on sale that I would use.

I have made it through my first week of meal planning and I think it went very well. I need to work on this coming week's meal plan. I have tomorrow night worked out, since we ended up putting off making dinner after we both filled up on green smoothies I made.
Then we went out for tea with friends, and later when we got hungry split a wonderful masala dosai from a veggie Indian place. When we came home I just cut up the humongous cucumber and several tomatoes for us and we each had large plates of that for "dinner".

So, tomorrow night, I will be making chicken with mushroom cream sauce, using the baby portabellas. I found the recipe at Simply Recipes and I am always pleased with her recipes. They always come out great when I try them. I plan to serve the chicken and sauce on a bed of wilted spinach with sourdough on the side instead of noodles or rice. I'm also using boneless skinless chicken breast, too. I am not sure how that will work. I will be able to cut the cooking time down to about 20 minutes, but it won't have the same ability to brown. Meh, I am sure it will still be very good.

If I am making anything involves meat, 9 times out of 10 it will be using boneless skinless chicken breast. My husband has a serious aversion to meat with bones in it :) He's not picky about much of anything, and that's one of his few weird issues with food. His mother and step father would take him to dinner and my husband would sit alone at his own table in the Thai restaurants as a child with his plain rice and soy sauce, covering his eyes so as not to see them picking the meat off of their whole fried fish and such. Heh. Of course, my husband being born in Singapore and living in the Phillipines as a very young child loved curry and other regional foods from the area. Really, he's not a picky eater.

I do cook whole chicken or cut up chicken on occasion, I just debone it for him. I don't mind at all, I find it endearing.

I have had a long day, and am looking forward into crawling into bed soon. I think I will end up eating a small bowl of cereal before bed, though. The baby sure does like cereal before bed!

On Being a Good Enough Parent

Cathy over at Chief Family Officer participated in the My Life in Six Words meme, and I think hers is a great one: I'm not perfect, but good enough.

She also asked other people out there reading to talk about being a "good enough" parent.

This was a very hard place for me to get to in my life. I have an unusual situation among most of the mothers that I know in that I am not the primary custodial parent to my boys. It took me four years of very difficult processing to get to a place of being as ok with this as I think I can be. Of course, it sucks more than you can possibly imagine, and it's not something that most mothers can even fathom. I couldn't either for a very long time.

I've blogged before about my very difficult time with severe PPD after my 2nd child was born, along with undiagnosed and spiraling out of control bipolarII. I was also in a relationship that I didn't feel supported in and putting that and the decision to leave that marriage in the midst of all of this going on made things impossible for me to be a full time mother as I had been since the birth of my oldest child.

I felt completely lost and helpless and like I was simply a bad person in my inability to communicate with my spouse, take care of my children perfectly all of the time, and to deal with my severe depression over it all.

I had a bit of a mental breakdown and could not sustain that life. I still stayed home with the kids full time after we separated, for nearly a year, and I still just felt overwhelmed and incapable of taking care of myself well and exhausting myself in every way struggling to care for the kids. When he filed the divorce and the custody arrangement came up, there wasn't anything different I could have done at the time. That was my biggest obstacle, accepting that it was the best decision at the time. Especially once I was treated and could see that it was the mental illness and not me simply being a bad person.

Since that time I have had to do a lot of work to forgive myself, to stop blaming myself, and to come to terms with the impact my mental illness had. For a long time I wanted nothing more than to go back and do anything I could do to change the way things happened.

But I had to rethink that, because I did do the best I could, and I did do everything that was in my capability at the time.

This is something I have to live with now. While I could attempt to change it around and take it to court and all of that, not only is it beyond my financial means, but I feel like it could be detrimental to my children. I have just recently seen what kind of stress a parent can put on their children by just this very thing. It isn't fair to the kids and it can be a selfish road to take.

If I felt that my children were suffering greatly in this situation, I would, but while there are definite difficulties in the situation (mostly involving me and their father at times), things are ok for them. Not ideal for me, but they are ok. My children are well taken care of and happy, they have two sets of very loving and involved parents who make them their priority, they have lived their lives in this way for nearly 5 years now. I would jump at the chance for things to be different, but not at the detriment of my kids.

This is the way my reality of mothering is, and I have come to accept it.

I did what was the best I could do, and it was good enough. My kids will undoubtedly have some things to work through as they get older, but I think to a certain extent most people do. Even if they have an "ideal" childhood, there are things that will crop up, and will need to be worked through.

I am not a perfect mother, but I am an awesome mother. I kick all kinds of ass when it comes to parenting my children, and I know that I do.

It also took me 4 years of adamantly denying even the thought of ever having another child. I sincerely did not believe I deserved to raise another one, since I felt so much like I failed the children I already had.

After a lot of work in dealing with my feelings about my situation, I finally got to the point of being ok with having done what I could and that it wasn't my fault. I didn't choose the mental illness, I didn't choose the PPD, I didn't choose to be unable to care properly for my children for a period of time.

And once I worked through all of this, lo and behold, I was finally able to also realize that I did want another child. Another child with my husband,, my life partner, my best friend, the awesome step parent to my children. And of course, a month after we started talking about it and we decided to try in about a year, I felt a little funny and peed on a stick, and here I am, at 27 weeks pregnant with our daughter.

With this preganancy, there has been the acceptance of not being able to breastfeed due to the medications I have to take to control my illness and be able to be a good mother. And that I don't actually want to co-sleep for 3 years this time. I just don't. And I am not doing cloth diapers this time.

I had a little bit of mourning over the breastfeeding thing, but I know that this is what I need to do. It still hits me sometimes, and makes me a little sad, but I know that my mental health is the most important part of my ability to parent. The other things are just my own decisions and wisdom of my own limitations and what causes me undue stress, etc. Well managed mental health care for is the best thing I can give all of my children and my family and myself, this is the first priority always.

And I also have had occasion bouts of guilt when it comes to my two oldest children. They have been less than thrilled with this baby, and I know that it comes from (because they have told me) them not being here with me all of the time like this baby will be. That's hard. But I do everything I can to allow their feelings, to try to reassure them that they will not receive any less attention from me because of the baby, etc. There is only so much I can say to them to make them feel better, so they will just have to see it to believe it.

I also drink more caffeine that I should while pregnant sometimes, and other times all I eat is cereal and soymilk. Meh. Don't sweat the small stuff, I say.

Wow, this has become a long post. I'm sure there are some other things I would have liked to have touched on, but brain melty and it's late.
I also wanted to add in a six word thing, but haven't thought of one for myself. I will think about it some more and post it another time. It's 4am and I want to go to the farmer's market in the morning. If only I could sleep!

Friday, April 25, 2008

I Can Live Without It, Too.

Rebecca over at Green Baby Guide has a post about Baby Gear I Lived Without. I was just going to leave her a comment telling her how much I agreed, but it was far too long, so I decided to go ahead and post about it over here.
I know I have mentioned before my dislike of baby "gear" and all, but I figure I'll make a post more focusing on what I DID use.
As many of you know, this is baby #3 for me, but with a 6 year gap in between my last this time it's starting all over with baby stuff collecting.

I've made some different decisions this time around but let me tell you, with my first, there were very few items I needed and I was one of those moms sucked in to having a registry based on the infamous checklist. (I've become a lot wiser in the nearly 9 years since I became a mother for the first time!)

The things that came in handy with my first:
bouncy seat to put him in when I needed to pee or eat (didn't have a moses basket)
a sling
,
exersaucer once he was a bit older (I personally love these things)
a $20 umbrella stroller after he could hold his head up well.
I could have done without anything else! Seriously. Nothing else was EVER used, including the crib (well, it was used to hold unfolded clean laundry). I used cloth diapers and breastfed and co-slept, so that was pretty much it. Oh, a very small black Carter's diaper bag that looked like one of those square lunch bags. That was a great bag! Big enough for a few cloth diapers, some wipes and a dirty diaper sack and it doubled as a purse for me so I didn't have more than one bag to carry.

With my 2nd I did get a glider, because I didn't have anything that rocked and thought it would be really nice to have and it was. Some friends chipped in and got one for me, and it lasted for about a year then fell apart. I don't have anything that rocks now, either, so I am going to see if I can find one free from anyone I know or Freecycle. It can really be anything that rocks and is comfortable, not necessarily a glider (the gliders really are totally ugly, aren't they?)

With #2, I knew what I wanted to add to the mix and what I didn't, and I've figured out even more now with #3 on her way. All of my shopping has been at the thrift store, and the majority of everything else has come free from friends.

Which means overall I have a few additional things that I may or may not use already, but I didn't shell out for it, nor did anyone else, at least not recently for new prices. I plan to use the crib this time around, and I got one for free. I did shell out $50 for a new mattress but I was offered a few. I just felt better knowing it was new. I did get a monitor that I will be able to use this time, too. If I am outside then it will be nice to have.

So, basically these are all items that I have put thought into and didn't just follow those silly checklists that seem to be everywhere. Of course I've had babies, so have first hand knowledge, but I think any first time moms can benefit from knowing these things.

I frequent the motheringdotcommune boards and in my due date club we have an ongoing thread about this very thing. It's very nice to hear what other mothers are finding useful and what was a waste of money and resources, especially for those first time moms who can really use this information. And it's funny, because there is very little variation across the board on what was needed and what wasn't.

What items were your necessities with your child(ren)? What could you live without and what came in useful?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Lunch Break

I did two loads of laundry today, one was put through the dryer (socks, undies, kids clothes, pjs) and the other to be hung to dry. (Quick Green Tip for Earth Day: Even if you cannot have a clothes line, you can still hang a lot of things on hangers and dry on the shower bar!)

I have had a semi productive day. I managed to organize under the kitchen sink and the spice cabinet and the teas and baking stuff. 2 loads of laundry... Wow, doesn't really seem like a lot.

Here is an adorable video! I found it on Tara's blog, Fiddle Mama. Yay, green smoothies! I didn't make one yet today, but I did get green powder, a bunch of kale and spinach, some goji and acai stuff, bananas, mangoes, pears, oranges, strawberries (which I am out of now, boo, I hope there is still some at the Farmer's Market Saturday). I have been digging the green smoothies every day. They are goooood.

Making yellow dal and basmati rice for dinner. Should be about done and Chris will be home from work very soon. There he is, I just heard the car!

Tackle It Tuesday


Well, I was just gearing myself up for getting off my butt and spending some quality time tackling a good amount of what needs to be done around here.

One thing I am disappointed about is not having quarters to do the laundry. Unfortunately with the whole SPD thing I cannot carry more than a load at a time to the laundry room, but I figure if I deal with a load today, then several tomorrow when Chris is off of work, then finish up whatever I have left by the end of the week I'll be in good shape.

My sleep schedule is kinda wonky, I seem to be sleeping more lately, too. I fall asleep early and wake up later than I would like.

But today I will make a dent in what needs to be done so that when I survey the house it won't look so bleak. And I need to sort through things and post on Freecycle or decide if I want to try to resell it somewhere. I thought that the convenience of Freecycle would simply be worth it to get rid of things, but I think what they say about perceived value may be true. A lot of people when asking for the stuff and being the one I give it to, seem to think nothing of not showing up when agreed upon. It's very frustrating.

But anyway, I feel like I am procrastinating. Ok, I know I am, so I will update my progress later, but I am off to tackle what needs to be done!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Toes, hammie, and more!

Now for a fluffy post of random fun in the last few days.



Saturday evening we went up to a local place for some live music, some boiled crawfish, and good friends and even firespinners (which enthralled the kids for a good long while)


Miles was really more interested in playing with his crawfish than eating it, but he did eat some.


We also added to our little family by a few ounces a few days ago. This is Lucy Samurai Crimefighter Kachu. She is an adorable dwarf hamster, and actually very friendly and curious. She is painfully adorable. And so wee tiny!



And my best friend treated me to a pedicure and manicure today! I am not sure that I have ever done my nails pink. Ever. I have always done black, red, so dark it's almost black red, purple, etc. Never pink. at least not since I was a preteen, but I don't remember ever. I've never been one to have my nails done on a regular basis.
It's so girly and fun! I like it!
And you know, I have wanted to get a pedicure for years and years, but I honestly think that may have been the first one I've had...
Now I just REALLY need to go get my eyebrows done... Yikes.

And now, possibly more than you ever wanted to know about me!
I even shaved my legs. It had been very near a year if not over. And I made the mistake of my underarms, too. I try this on occasion, and today I tried the baking soda thing, then my new tea tree oil deodorant, hoping this would help part of my reasons for disliking shaving.
Yeah, no. It's awful. I sweat way more and smell almost immediately with my armpits shaved.
It's gross, then it gets ITCHY when it starts to grow back, etc. I like them shaved theoretically, but in actual practice it always sucks and I always regret it. I will try to keep it up for a few weeks this time, though, and see if it gets any better, mostly for science.
Just really can't figure out why I get so much more BO with shaved pits, so I intend to experiment.
Science, it's a wonderful thing.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

I don't want to talk too much about it lest it doesn't happen for some reason, but unless things go horribly awry or it's just far too broken for us to deal with, we were given an older (91) Volvo station wagon this evening. Yay!
It needs some work, but person said that he didn't think it would need too much. He knows a bit about cars, so I'm hoping he'll be right on this. Schweeeet.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

So Many Great Blog Posts

Since Earth Day is coming up and I have so many fantastic blogs that I read, I'm going to stick with sharing posts today that are about the environment, frugality, consumption, the 3 r's and practical advice for living your life and lowering your carbon footprint.

Are you familiar with greenwashing? Jennifer over at Tree Hugging Family has a post pointing people in the direction of a great list of Sins of Greenwashing, a good guide to make sure you aren't falling for that type of dishonest advertising.


Cathy over at Chief Family Officer has a post about The 29 Day Giving Challenge. I like that it's an honest question about whether giving makes you feel good. I don't believe in altruism in general, personally. Since I am purging my own things, this is a great idea.

Peggy at Tree Hugging Family has a post about washing your laundry in cold water. I wash everything I have in cold except for an occasional load of just whites, maybe once or twice a month, and except for kids clothes, jeans, socks and towels, everything else is hung to dry. I think it extends the life of your clothes as well as saves tons of energy!

There is an April Tiny Challenge happening over at Tiny Choices. This is the first check in and many of the participants have some great tiny ideas of how to make changes that are easy to implement but make an impact over time.

Here's another great one from Jennifer at Tree Hugging Family: Five ways to conserve water in less than one minute.

So Canada has been the first to take the step to call BPA "dangerous". I've read this all over the place at this point, but I read it at Treehugger first. Go Canada! And I already felt strongly about this after reading some of the information out there, and this is why I am insisting on BPA free bottles and toys for the baby.

MerchantShips at Frugal Hacks has a good post about the tendency to end up spending more on things that we don't necessarily need because it's such a good deal, or bypassing large purchases but spending an equal amount on a lot of little things. This was an issue for me in the past, but I don't do this very often any more. I am in awe of CVS-ing, but truthfully I don't plan to even put the effort out to start, how often to I actually buy that stuff each year? Except for tp not that often!

Heather over at Freebies 4 Mom posted about a printable $5 Coupon for a Brita pitcher! A lot of talk lately has been about plastic water bottles. Besides the icky plastic that leeches who knows what (remember the BPA thing?), used plastic bottles contributes so much to landfills every year! I don't drink bottled at home, though I do admit to keeping some in the car for the kids and myself while we are out. I'm so weirded out by the reusable SIGG bottles and I don't know what that's about. Should make the switch. But we drink a LOT of water.

kat at Eating Liberally has a fantastic post all about one of my favorite things, and I really encourage a full read.

THIS is how schools should ALL be looking at things
. From Treehugger.

And just one more: How simple steps can put $678k in your pocket. Again, from Treehugger.

There are so many great blogs out there and this is just the bare few that I am sharing right now.

I have tons of other posts I want to share soon, mostly tasty recipes. I want to at least try one of them before I do so I can post results :)

Hope you enjoy this list of linky goodness. And turn out the lights!