Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Our Holiday Report

We had a great Christmas. We did the usual present opening in the morning, followed by Breakfast Casserole, which is my traditional breakfast (the tradition might have to expand next year, though--I was the only one who ate it this year!).

Just as I was about to start packing up to go to G&G N's house, HH told me that he didn't know if we could go because of a car repair that he had to do...not sure why he waited until it was time to go to tell me....
So here are pictures of what came next. I sent Chick out to play in the snow, Babe played with her new toy, and I had a sulky pity party for a while and then worked on organizing the new snapware that I'd asked for on my Christmas list. HH worked on the car.

He got things put back together again on the jeep in a couple of hours and we were able to go up to my sister's house after all (we didn't make the additional stop at G&G's--we saw them at J's). Evidently I forgot to take pictures there, but we had fun visiting and playing games and such.
Here are the girls in their Christmas attire... They both looked SO DARLING (If I do say so myself. I am biased, but EVERYONE agreed with me!)

(Babe's outfit is a gift from G'ma J & has ears on the hood but they don't show in the picture)

(Chick's outfit is a gift from G'ma N, with babylegs made by me)

Then we spent the night at G&G N's, and I got to spend my birthday up there, which was super fun! I didn't have to do any cooking, and my neice made a delicious cheesecake, and I went shopping with my Mom & Sister & Niece (in law) & the little girls...and HH got to play games with the guys. We all had an excellent time.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Ah yes...Losing weight.

Well, it's almost time. I gave myself half a month of sloth, but on Monday it's time to get real & start eating right & exercising more.

As a help to myself, I'm going to have a weight loss journey blog. It's going to be private, so if you are female (yes, I'm being sexist) & interested in weight loss, then post a comment or email me, and I'll let you in.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Ode to My Mom

My mom came to take care of Chick during the birth, & to see the birth herself. She's given birth 7 times, but never SEEN a birth. Chick slept through everything, but my Mom thought it was cool to see the birth. It was exciting for me to have her there, too.
After that, she took care of Chick (which is no small feat--a 22 month old can really wear anyone out!) and took care of me so that I could rest & not worry about maintaining my home. She also helped with groceries & replaced my 2 cup measuring cup that broke a while ago.
Mom also made tapioca pudding, in celebration of breastfeeding (it's a tradition). It was delicious. She did also make healthy stuff...one really delicious thing was a Blue Breakfast Smoothie (her changes are that she doesn't measure the spinach--she puts in 2 handfuls, she added a thick slice of pineapple, and the second time that she made it she omitted the blueberries because she ran out--it was still delicious but not blue...it was green). I promise you CAN'T taste the spinach...it tastes like a yummy fruit smoothie.
Anyhow, I know lots of people don't have help after giving birth--in fact my Mom only had help once: her Mom came for 3 days after the first baby was born. I don't know how they do it--but for myself I can honestly say that I couldn't have done it without my Mom. With the usual healing that comes after giving birth, plus hormones shifting, & re-learning to breastfeed & engorgment, & sleep deprivation, & keeping up with a toddler.... Nope. There were times when I felt like I could barely make it through that first week even WITH help...I don't even want to think what it would be like without help.
Thank you Mom!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

I am thankful for...

Blogs. I know, I've done a couple of "ode to blogs" already, but I haven't been able to read everyone's blogs for the past week, and this morning I felt like I got to "chat" with family and friends for an hour!

Slings. I was able to make breakfast and type on the computer & all of the other random things that I would normally do in the morning--with the Babe cuddled up next to me (& out of Chick's reach), and with two hands!!

The Baby Book by Dr. Sears. My midwife had mentioned that with her second baby she had a completely different set of "issues" than she'd had with the first. It's the same for us. Glad to have such a thorough reference.

Breastfeeding. I battled engorgement that was starting to turn nasty earlier this week, so it's funny that I'm grateful for this one. But now that we're starting to turn a corner & it's getting more comfortable, I am so happy to have that bonding time & the extra boost of hormones that help me love my baby even more.

Chick. She's either in the Babe's face or she's being a bit of a pill these days...hopefully we'll get back to our regular routine in the next couple of days. However, she's surprisingly gentle with Babe. Even when 2 days ago she managed to sneak some unsupervised time with the baby, she was gentle and loving.

My visiting teachers. They brought/are bringing food & support. Thanks Stacy & Meghan.

There are other things, of course (My Mom, for one, but she's going to get her own post...coming soon)--but Chick reached her level of being ignored & is now in time-out. That's my cue to get off & pay attention to her & feed the Babe.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Babe has Arrived!

Here are the stats:
  • Babe was born on Friday morning
  • Labor lasted about 3 hours, and she was born at 6:14 a.m.
  • She weighed 8 pounds, 5 ounces
  • She is 19.5 inches long
  • She has short blond (hint of red) fuzz for hair. It looks like Chick's did.
  • (By the way, Chick weighed 7.7 and was 20.25 long with an 8 hr labor)

Here are some pictures!

Here's an approximate timeline of the birth:

2:00 am - Chick woke us up & went back to bed. I worked on the
computer for an hour.

3:00 am - I took a bath

3:30 am - Woke HH up and started doing housework

3:45 am - Called Grandma N & Charlotte (our midwife)

4:45 am - Got into the birth pool

5:30 am - Got out to have water broken

5:45 am - Started pushing

6:14 am - Our little Babe was born!

Here's a detailed story of the birth...read only if you are interested...I won't be offended : )

Chick woke us up for her 2:00am hug, and went back to bed. I was having slight cramps & didn't feel the baby move after I moved around a bit & I got nervous about things being ok...so I got up and went to do some design work on the computer. The baby did move some, which helped me to feel more at ease, but after an hour the cramps were getting a little more annoying. So I went and got into the bathtub for a little bath. That's when I decided that they weren't CRAMPS but actual CONTRACTIONS...that were getting stronger. After only half an hour I decided that this was IT, and I woke HH up to start filling the pool.

Honestly, with several false alarms, I'm surprised that he listened to me and got up. But he did. While he started filling the pool, I picked things up & swept, etc...figuring that if it was false labor then the change in activity would get rid of the contractions. But it didn't--they got stronger. Strong enough that when a contraction came I'd have to get down on my hands and knees and focus on relaxing. Then I'd get up and walk around & clean some more. During that time of activity I called my Mom & midwife.

Finally I couldn't take walking around anymore--the contractions were too close. So I went into my bedroom and draped myself over my physio-ball & rocked on my knees. I did that for a few contractions--my Mom arrived while I was doing that. I didn't do that for too long, though--contractions were too strong and the pool next to me was too alluring.

I had a rule to not get into the pool until I was dilated to a 5, and there wasn't any of the midwife team to check me yet, but I couldn't stay out. I got in and was SO grateful for the water! While I was in there the assistants & then the midwife arrived. By the time the midwife arrived I was going crazy inside. I was playing mind games like, "I know that a sign of transition is the feeling like you can't take any more...I feel like I can't take any more, does that mean that I'm going through transition? Or does it just mean that I WANT to be going through transition?"

The funny thing is that one of the assistants met Charlotte, the midwife, outside and told her that I was really calm and it looked like they had a long time left. Little did she know! I felt like all I could do was hang on until Charlotte arrived and checked my dilation.

So Charlotte came in and checked and said that I was at 4. "FOUR?! NO, IF I'M AT FOUR, THEN I CAN'T DO IT. I CAN'T DO IT!" That's all in caps to let you know that I said it frantically, pretty much crying. I just melted. I couldn't believe it. I had totally expected her to say I was at a 10 and could push!

Thankfully Charlotte said that if I felt like that, then there was a good chance that I was really in transition (sort of) but not dilating because my water hadn't broken. She said that she couldn't guarantee it, but often after the first baby the water doesn't break but if you break it things will go quickly afterwards. She thought that it was possible that if I let her break the water then I'd probably go from 4 to 10 quickly.

I had HH come in (he was off doing stuff...I think he liked being busy and getting things done, rather than sitting by helplessly. I'm coherent enough during labor to be ok with that). I held his hand during a contraction & had Charlotte tell him the option, and he thought we should do it. I was ok with anything to speed things up, so I got out of the tub.

They discussed whether or not to take the quilt off the bed--I said no, because from the pool I wanted to see my quilt rather than the ugly sheets that we'd put on for the days after the birth. So, since I was just getting on there for the water breaking, they put down a bunch of pads & towels on top of the quilt. Charlotte waited for the next contraction and broke the water during it.

The next contraction got me to 8, and the next after that was 10 and I was able to start pushing.

The plan had been to get back into the water, but the baby's head started crowning immediately & Charlotte encouraged me to stay put and just push the baby out quickly. So I did.

Pushing Chick out had taken 1.5 hours and was exhausting and my least favorite part of the birth. With Babe it was nice to be able to do something & helped to make the contractions less painful. We don't know exactly how long I was pushing, but think it was about a half hour. It was very dramatic--I was a lot more noisy than with the first birth, and I wasn't doing it on purpose. The plan had been to have Chick watch, but she slept through everything, and given the drama of the scene I'm glad she did. I don't think she'd have understood.

Anyhow, then the baby was born. I got to help pull her out & call the gender, which was cool. HH cut the umbilical cord & weighed the baby.

So far things are going well. Yesterday was busy with a steady stream of visits from family, which was so much fun!

Chick does have some jealousy moments, but generally she loves to give Babe her lovin'! I'll definitely have to be on my toes, but at least she likes the baby. And we are all very impressed that at 22 months she can pronounce Babe's name perfectly! That's something that most people have yet to master!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Movie Recommendation

Hooray for the free Monday movie codes at Redbox, is all I can say. I had intended to be productive today, but it's raining.

I should be productive anyhow, but I'm really glad I got to watch a free movie in the middle of the day--rain or not. I'll be productive in a little bit (after blogging...and then napping).

Anyhow, Chick and I just watched Kit Kittredge: An American Girl. Since it is g-rated I can recommend it without any reservations. I will warn you--it looks all happy-go-lucky in the preview, but it was a tear jerker. Honestly I cried off and on all throughout the movie. You can blame it on prego hormones if you want, but the movie does a good job of putting the Great Depression on a personal level. It is an "American Girl" movie, so of course it ends happily (a little too happily, really), but I like happy endings. Whenever I'd start crying Chick would look up at me like,
"What on EARTH is Mama crying about? All I care about is that there's a doggie on the TV."

Anyhow, speaking of the Great Depression, here's a book recommendation too: Little Heathens. I don't remember the author's name (check my GoodReads in the sidebar...I think the book is in there). It was a really interesting book. Things have really changed since then.

Ultrasound Question

We've never gotten an ultrasound.
Not with either pregnancy.

We prefer to be surprised about the gender, and aside from peace of mind, don't see any big reason to do one.

We would, of course, if there was a medical indication for one.

I haven't researched all of the reasons for getting an ultrasound as much as I have researched other things.

my question is:
aside from finding out the gender & wanting to see the baby, why did you get an ultrasound?
And did it reveal any fixable medical condition?

NOTE: I'm not talking about a medically recommended ultrasound--if it was a high risk pregnancy to begin with then that is TOTALLY different. Or if your caregiver suggested it because something didn't seem quite right, then OF COURSE that's different.

I'd also like to add that just the peace of mind that seeing your baby would bring is CERTAINLY a valid reason, and I don't think that ultrasounds are bad in ANY way. I think it would be a nice way to bond with the baby. I'm asking these questions because sometimes people act like we're bad parents & endangering the baby by not getting one.

Monday, November 24, 2008

It's really Labor this time!

For sure.

That's what I told Handsome Handyman when I woke him up at 1:15 a.m.

About 10 minutes to 2 a.m. I debated calling my midwife, but decided to wait out a few more contractions so that I'd know better how far apart they were.

I fell asleep before I called her, though, and it's a good thing. By 5:50, when HH woke up (when he's supposed to be walking in to work!) I had to ask if I really had had contractions or if that was a dream.

So we're still waiting.

I changed the prego ticker due date--It was bad for my morale to see it add on days! So now it will go to Thanksgiving, which is my last possible due date (then of course there are 2 weeks of overtime before the baby is evicted).

Yesterday Chick and I stayed home from church. She got a cold (from Nursery) so she couldn't go (to Nursery)...ironic. Anyhow, we napped, so it was nice and relaxing.

HH's birthday was on Saturday, and was totally uneventful. I hadn't really PLANNED anything, because I didn't know if I'd be in bed with a new little one or not. He renewed his license at the DOL, we ran errands, he worked in the yard and on the car...that's about it. He'd been planning to watch the apple cup, but then gave the tv up to Chick so that she could watch "Movie...Bear?" (Bernstein Bear video). The most birthday-ish part was a brownie cake and cuddling up to watch the new Indiana Jones movie. Oh well, I'll make next year's b-day extra special.

But let me tell you about my grocery shopping--I love Albertsons sales. Here's what I got:

brownie mix & frosting,
25# flour,
2 bottles of cooking oil,
3 other baking items,
3# butter,
4 cans broth,
8 cans cream of mushroom,
15# potatoes,
and a 20# turkey

....all for $24.54
($78.84 savings, according to them)

Sunday, November 23, 2008




= 36! Happy Birthday, Handsome!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Ticker says Zero...

When I awoke at 2:30 this morning and couldn't get back to sleep, I decided to put a load of laundry in the washer (ambitious, I know...usually I just get on the internet or take a bath!). While I was down there I noticed that I could smell gas from the dryer. HH shut it off at the valve before leaving for work.

Sometimes it seems that nothing is easy.

But that's really the only black spot in the past couple of days...

Yesterday Grandma & Grandpa N called and said that they were going to stop by for a visit. I got to look at their cruise scrapbook, Grandma & Chick vacuumed the stairs : ) Then we all went to Value Village. It wasn't a sale day, so really no great DEALS, but cute stuff (all for Chick except for extremely comfy slippers that were in the New Gift section). We stopped at a kid's consignment shop too, where I got some shoes for Chick (if she has anything thicker than tights on she signs "Hurt" when I put on her brown shoes). We went to McDonalds for lunch (my choice--I don't get out much and like to have fast food every once a month or so). Anyhow, it was really fun, and Chick (who woke me up and was signing "Play with friends" right away) was happy to be with G&G & to get out of the house.

I also got an email from Grandma & Grandpa J, who are on THEIR cruise. I was happy to hear that they are loving their cruise. Honestly, who DOESN'T love a cruise?! And G'ma J won $100 at bingo. Yay. When we took a cruise a couple of years ago, HH played a bit of bingo too...that was practically his only expenditure (I bought stuff).

The good points of today were:
sleeping in--Chick and I both slept until 10!
I got the birth pool fully inflated (I've been procrastinating that)
& put the liner inside & one underneath.
And I changed the knobs on our bedside tables.

As for my due date: I might have explained this already... I have a 2 week window of when the baby is due (13th to the 27th). I used the middle (20th) for the prego ticker. I don't know what the ticker does when you go over, but I may not even be overdue after today. I might not be really DUE until Thanksgiving. We're still all just waiting.

I'm attaching another video of Chick, because she's cute.
Please ignore the boyish pj's...long story but she likes planes anyhow.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I just made the most delicious granola! Here's the recipe. I used ground flaxseed instead of wheat germ (because I had one and not the other), and less honey, and added some raisins. Oh, and I used chopped peanuts rather than walnuts, because we aren't walnut fans around here.

By the way, one of the coolest compliments that I've gotten was being told that I was "granola." It's not true, of course, I'm pretty mainstream except for the homebirth...but I liked the compliment anyhow.

My other favorite compliment was when I was in Italy--I was told that my hair was like the rays of the sun. Of course, I was told it by a woman, and she spent some time in an asylum, so maybe it's not so credible, but I like it anyhow!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The status quo

Last night's midwife appointment went well: blood pressure is low, iron count is high, weight is the same. Baby is still alive and kicking with an average heartbeat & average measurement. I'm still dilated to 2...it could still be as early as today or as late as 3 weeks from now. I'm just waiting.

I finished all of my freezer cooking, though I might continue to add to it as I go.

My dishes are clean, and my laundry isn't mountainous.

The cradle is set up, and the birth pool is inflated but not filled.

Oh, and yesterday I decided on the post-birth meal! I'm going to do a crock pot potato chowder with diced ham and some corn added in. The recipe has good reviews--and rightfully so, because it is not low fat in the least! I'll let you know how it goes : )

I feel a little bad saying that I'm impatient. I have a pretty good time being pregnant, I think--I actually like it. And with all that I wanted to get done before the babe came out, I should be happy to have more time. But for about the past week I've been ready.

I'm ready to start trying to get my body back to normal.

I'm ready to meet this child--what color hair will it have? What is the gender?! etc.

I'm ready to just suck it up and deal with Chick constantly wanting to hold the baby & all the random changes that we'll have with her.

I'm ready (and excited) for the birth. Hard, yes, but such a thrilling thing. Last time, due to hypertension, I had to stay in bed for almost the entire time (except for 1 hour in the birth tub when I dilated from 5 to 10)...this time I should be fine being more vertical and moving as I'd like. I really can't wait! (I know I'm weird).

But I'm just waiting.

Probably in an hour I'll be happy to not be dealing with a baby. I won't bother posting when such a swing in opinion occurs--just assume that it'll happen!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Homemade Christmas Love

I thought I'd share some pictures of what I've made as Christmas gifts for the little ones. I actually did it a while ago (a month or two) so that I wouldn't stress out trying to get stuff done with a new baby and a chick that is just going to smother the new baby with lovin!

These are homemade "Baby Legs"...they'll be stocking stuffers for both kids. I got the socks on eBay, and they are so soft...I wish I could wear baby legs!

This is the mattress, pillow, fitted sheet, & pillowcase for the baby doll bed. Made with fabric that I had in my stash.

This is the baby doll with her nightgown & slippers that will match Chick's. The red flannel must have been given to me at some point. I had JUST ENOUGH.

The baby doll also comes with a red cradle, but I guess I didn't take a picture of it. The cradle was made by my cousin as a gift for me when I was little, and I repainted it.

This is the baby doll's blanket. Green, white, & red are the colors of the nursery. I had the leafy fabric & white binding already, and bought the green fleece to make a cover for the baby bjorn potty...I had extra, though, so I was able to use it for this blanket & the gift below.

This is a rattle textural baby block...so I don't feel like I'm treating the new babe like a stepchild. Green fleece (already mentioned), all other fabrics, bell, stuffing, & a white washcloth--I already had.

Not pictured (because it's not homemade): play-doh with lots of cutters & design rolling pins (cutters & rolling pins from Value Village), a pint-sized broom & dustpan set (Chick loves to help sweep, but the broom is too tall for her), and a Sandra Boynton book.

I also made something for some extended family, but can't post it because I don't want to give away the surprise. And I'm making something for HH but it's not done and (while I don't think that HH reads this blog even when I ask him to) I don't want to risk him seeing it. It'll probably be for his birthday anyhow, so I can post a picture in a couple of weeks.

Why does Pregnancy turn your brains to Mush?

Last pregnancy I never felt like an airhead. This pregnancy was the same...until yesterday & today. ..

I spent much of yesterday muttering under my breath about WHY I was getting the final edits for the magazine on the day that we send to the printer, rather than the day BEFORE. Nerds...did they really have to take so long in sending them to me & thus making me a day late for getting it all to the printer?! I did feel bad that several of the edits were just because I didn't pay close enough attention to what I was doing during layout (I like it better when the edits are THEIR fault). That was airhead moment #1.

Airhead moment #1: This morning I got an email from one of the aforementioned nerds. She said that she was confused why I was acting like we were running late, when (per the production schedule that I had sent out) we were right on schedule. Hmmm...I looked at the schedule, and then I realized that I had written the "final approval & submit to printer" on the 11th, rather than the 12th on my calendar. We were, indeed, supposed to submit to the printer today NOT yesterday. I'm so embarrassed.

The good point is that I wrote a very diplomatic email to all involved (all the nerds) last night, and as I was writing it I complained to HH that I didn't want to be diplomatic...I wanted to give them a piece of my mind! I'm sooooooo glad that I was diplomatic, since I would have looked like a cranky #$%& who couldn't keep her days straight!

Monday, November 10, 2008

This weekend

Well, of course the weekend got off to a rather rough start with Friday, though it was fun to take the pictures & video.

HH had mandatory overtime on Saturday, so Chick and I did the usual--I worked some more on layout (revising the cover...still not approved, but below is a picture of it as it is now) & we napped, ate, played, etc.

When HH got home we went grocery shopping. It's pretty rediculous that I get so excited from grocery shopping, but whatever floats your boat, right?

Anyhow, we first went to QFC, where they were having a holiday open house with lots of tasty samples & sales. Then we also went to Albertsons, Walgreens, & Fred Meyers. I won't list everything that I got, and I was more intent on getting things put away quickly than I was in taking a picture of it all (like the die hard frugality chicks do on the blogs to the right)...but here's a summary:
  • 92 items purchased

  • $100 spent

  • The average price was $1.10. That's the average, but some things ended up being free, and the most expensive was Breyer's ice cream for $2.50 each...we have our priorities straight.

  • Everything was on sale except for 3 cans of Tuna (Fred Meyer sells it for $.59 a can for the first three, which seems to be the best deal, regardless of sales)

  • In addition to sales, I used $20 worth of coupons : )

  • $15 credit to spend at Albertsons next time we go

  • a free loaf of Albertson's french bread

  • a free DVD rental from Redbox (we watched Get Smart...pretty funny!)

  • a free 8x10 from Walgreens

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Minds at work

Yesterday was a hard day. Especially in the morning--Little chick took my glasses while I was still in bed & I had to search for them for half an hour and then bend them back into shape : (

There were other things, too, but that's not the point. The point is that by the time evening came I was DONE. It was too early to go to bed, though, so while Chick played with her toys and HH worked on a sudoku in the paper I got out our camera and tried out new settings while lounging on the couch. We've had the camera for a couple of years, but I tend to use the same auto settings & have no idea what the others are for! I can't find the book (but I know it's somewhere around here...) to just read about the settings. Anyhow, as you can see the settings aren't quite right, but isn't she CUTE?! She put her vest on herself. She's also good at socks, shoes, pants, and sometimes panties.


Chick really is doing well with learning to talk-- now she can whine in ASL AND English.
In the past week or two she has learned to add an "S" for possessives & also plurals. Her "S" sounds more like "sh" so she says things like "Mama'sh towel" or "More pigsh."

But the cutest thing to me is "Yeah." She just started saying it about 3 days ago. She's been saying "Nope" for quite a while, but "yeah" is new and she says it so emphatically most of the time that it just cracks us up.

Of course I feel a little guilty--I picture Michael Caine saying, "Always YES, never yeah" to Sandra Bullock (in Miss Congeniality)... oh dear, I've already tainted my daughter!!

Anyhow, here's a video of her....

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Update on Me & My Life

Last night was another midwife appt. All is well. I'm dilated to 2 and have a soft cervix (tmi?)...could be a couple of days, or it could be weeks. Hopefully I can get through layout, which starts today and will go through next week. Next Thursday (the first of my possible due dates) is a full moon, so that's not in my favor! But I am getting excited to meet the baby...when I remember that pregnancy ends with a baby (crazy that I could forget, but I do!).

So yesterday I moved the cradle into our room & made sure all the baby stuff was as organized as possible. I also bought the special treats that we'll have during and after the birth (T. Joe's Dixie Peach juice - my favorite!, and T. Joe's graham crackers for Chick). Last time I had my absolute favorite food: Breakfast Casserole, as the post-birth meal. However, it's our tradition to have it for breakfast on Christmas morning. The two events are too close together, so I need to figure out what else we can eat after the baby comes. Any ideas? My midwife always does a birthday cake when she has babies--the whole family eats cake sitting on the bed with the new baby. That's a fun tradition, but I tend to like savory rather than sweet.

And speaking of food, I've made a huge batch of raisin bran muffins & a couple more casseroles to freeze. Now all I need to do is prepare 1 or 2 more casseroles (lasagna--on the menu for Sunday) and cook up some chicken and ground beef and I'll be done! I'll have about 2 weeks of meals completely done, and another week or two of meal components to throw together.

Other news: I decided on which prego pics to order. I'll be getting #17, 18, 41, and 68. If you haven't looked yet, they're still online until Thursday. Click on the logo then select "Your Session" & enter "p.j." as the name, and "bebe" as the password. You have to then click on the photo to enter the gallery.

Lastly, our dryer stopped working completely (it hasn't worked well for quite a while!). HH had a new replacement that he was putting off installing (it required hooking up gas rather than electricity & changing the water heater, which we also had but put off doing)...anyhow, the demise of the old dryer was the nudge that he needed, and now I have a beautiful working dryer! Yay! Of course, now I need to help him get motivated enough to get rid of the old one!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Fairy (Another great idea from Stacy)

When talking about Halloween, Stacy mentioned the Halloween Fairy. Just like the tooth fairy, If you put all of your candy under the bed or wherever, she will come and take it. In the candy's place she will leave a cool toy.
I think this is a brilliant idea! We'll probably start next year. As for Laying down the Law (Kim!)...I guess so. But when I took her candy away from her it was so that we could go in to the ward dinner...I just needed to put it in the car. Once we were home I gave her the dumdum and she was happy with that.
I do limit her sugar--I've loosened up somewhat (when she realizes that she's getting the shaft). She's usually happy with a substitute--yogurt instead of ice cream, or apple sauce instead of apple pie. It's totally hypocritical that I eat that stuff, but I'm working towards a happy medium on both sides : ) During the pregnancy I've gotten lazy, but I usually limit myself to one free day a week--one special breakfast, one dessert, one more decadent dinner, etc (Isn't it funny that pregnancy is when I cut loose? Chick was formed on Burger King...I ate more fast food during that pregnancy than the rest of my life combined! This baby is being formed on candy and the leftover apple pie!).
I read that a person's tastes are almost completely developed by what they are exposed to (food-wise) in the first two years. I don't expose chick to as much variety as I should, but I try to not let sugar & food coloring be too prevalent because she might not like other things once she's used to the sweet & technocolored : ) She started eating fruit snacks, and now she asks for them for breakfast...augh! (it is cute, though...she made up her own sign & says "Nack?" all hopeful-like!)
By the way, I make PB & Honey Candy as our treat substitute...delicious! And easy to make: combine 1 c Honey with 1 c Peanut butter. Then add 2 c powdered milk & I add up to a cup of ground up oats (so it's less sticky) & ground flax seeds (for added nutrition). Mix well & roll into a snake, slice into pieces (overachievers can roll the pieces into balls) and refrigerate or freeze. MMMMMMmmmmm good! My Mom made it for us growing up, but I've also seen it in the book "Super Baby Food," which is a GREAT resource & I highly recommend it.
Another book that I recommend, while I'm writing about nutrition is "Fatland." But I should say that I am not saying any of this to be judgemental. HH barely eats, but when he does it's often twizzlers or tortilla chips with salsa. I'm fine with however people want to fuel themselves, but as for me and my chicks.....
Writing this (LONG! Sorry!!) post has made me want to be a bit more diligent in how I eat. So thanks if you read to the end, but I suppose the epiphany was meant for me!
{End of soapbox}

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Other Delights this Week...

So in addition to the pumpkin patch, and Halloween (posted below), I had a delightful week!
My parents got home from their cruise and came to dinner to tell us all about it. To celebrate the season, I made pumpkin gnocchi (and in addition to having enough for dinner & some leftover for lunches, I froze enough for a future meal post-baby). I also tried out crockpot lady's Rotisserie-Style Chicken, which was super easy & tasted great.
Chick and I picked apples from the tree in the yard (very organic looking & need a bit more paring than store-bought apples, but nice and tart...great for baking!), and then made an apple pie to eat for dessert. We had a lovely evening!! Glad the folks had a good cruise : )

The next day I used the carcass & made chicken stock. It honestly is the best stock I've ever made! I've always done it on the stove, but tried crockpot lady's recipe in the crock. SO GREAT! I froze it in a few extra ice cube trays, so I'm set for a while.

I've been enjoying the changing leaves--the trees in the greenbelt behind our house have finally started to change and fall. It's gorgeous. Since I've never lived here in fall/early winter, I can't imagine what it will look like when all the leaves are gone. I always like the change, though--I'll probably be excited for bare trees, too.

Oh, and last but not least, I found THE PERFECT lampshade. HH dumpster dove a black lamp at some point in the past, and I came across it and decided to use it in the bedroom. It didn't have a harp or a shade, though, so I bought a shade that didn't need a harp at Walmart for $15. I was ok with it, but it was a little more brown than was ideal. So then I took a quick stop at Value Village and found a shade (for $4) that was in new condition & was the exact same yellow as the yellow walls in my room & was mottled, just like the faux finish on the walls! It was so perfect! HH picked up a harp at Lowes for a couple of dollars, and TaDa...here it is!

Our Trip to the Pumpkin Patch

The day before Halloween we went with Stacy, Lea, & Luther to visit Craven's Pumpkin Patch. The kids all had a great time--they have all sorts of displays and attractions for kids to explore, and a few animals to pet & look at.

Chick loved the tractor!

Isn't this the coolest pumpkin? I roasted most of the seeds, but saved out some to dry & plant in the garden...hopefully we can have some cool, bumpy homegrown pumpkins next year!

This Halloween

I am embarrassed to admit that I did not start sewing chick's costume until 11am on Halloween day! I ran out of pompons, and the sewing adhesive for putting them on was taking too long to dry--I ended up pulling them off the front & leaving it blank. And the hat, of course, didn't get completely covered. Anyhow, not what it was supposed to be...baby #2 will get a better sheep costume, since the sewing is all done & all I'll have to do is finish with the pompoms. Luckily Chick is cute enough to pull it off.

For someone who has never (as far as I know) eaten candy, she was very upset that I took it from her...she signed & said CANDY while crying (Darn Signing Time, why did they have to teach that sign?!)

We went to the ward Trunk-or-Treat / Chili dinner party (isn't the ballerina in yellow cute? She got cutest costume...such a gorgeous & classic costume!), and then came home and handed out candy. Chick did awesome giving out candy, and of course all of the trick-or-treaters thought that she was darling (sorry, I didn't get a picture).

Finally I gave her a dum-dum (Handsome Handyman got all the rest...which wasn't much since her pumpkin was so small!) and she vegged in front of the TV!

Flashback: Last Halloween

She's changed so much! She could never fit in that bucket now!