Thursday, July 30, 2009


Well, folks, this is it!  We're headed in this morning to have baby number 3!

Send us all the thoughts, prayers and love that you have!  (I'm coveting every one).

And for those of you keeping track, today is the 15 month b-day of Miss C, but I'll be posting on that when we return home.  But I'll give you this shot of her sweetness to hold you over.

Catch you on the flip side!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Sometimes It Is All Rainbows

Two days ago, the girls and I perched on the couch and looked out of our picture window at some crazy rainstorms.  I spent half of the time pulling C out of the window sill and half of the time answering Bean's countless questions about where thunder came from.  Eventually, the girls lost interest in the drenching downpour and galloped off to find something new to get into entertain themselves.

I happened to glance up a few minutes later, surprised to see bright sunshine where just moments before there were pouring sheets of rain.  The rain had tapered off, but I was delighted to see this:

I called Bean and C back to the window and needless to say, Bean was enthralled.
"Mama?  Did God make that rainbow just for ME?!" 
He might have made the rainbow for her, but He made her for me. 

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Counting Down

Last night, I was tossing and turning, trying to get to sleep, (albeit slowly, as it's tough for a whale to do any serious thrashing around), and I realized that I hate the last week or two of my pregnancies.  I hate feeling ginormous.  I hate the sense of impending change, no matter how amazing that change proves to be.  I hate worrying over the way my life or my kids' life will be affected by the new addition.  I hate not being able to bend down without feeling like I might not make it back up.  For this one and the last, I hate knowing that I'm headed into a major surgery complete with its risks.  I hate being constantly tired and knowing that the end of that exhaustion is no where near in sight.  I hate heartburn and muscle aches and sore feet and insane mood swings. 

No matter how often I try to change perspectives, the last two weeks are a time of pessimism and worry, only very lightly speckled over with anticipation and excitement. 

It always seems as if things settle into a lovely rhythm just before the births, too.  Both of my kids are now sleeping easily through the night.  They're going to bed without a fight.  They're learning to play together.  Our schedule is predictable and they seem to be thriving.  And I'm about to have another kiddo to add to the mix to mess with sleep schedules, attention levels, behavior patterns, etc.

It stresses me out. 

And I know, I know that once he's here, things will be wild and crazy for awhile but we'll find our way.  And I know that I'm going to find reserves of love yet untapped to pile over this kid just as I did with my last two.  I know all of this, I do.

But the last couple of weeks of pregnancy?  They still stink. 

Saturday, July 25, 2009

I'm Still Pregnant

No, I'm not off having a baby or anything.  I'll let y'all know, I promise. 

My absence has been partially due to an insane amount of nesting.  (And really, you can nest and nest and nest and your kids will take apart all of your hard work so you have to do it again.  Satisfying to the nesting part of me..  maddening to the rest of me). 

And also, we're in the final stages of the downstairs bathroom install and I can't currently get into my computer area because they're putting the tile down by and in the bathroom. 

So anyway, lots to say, not a lot of time as of right now to say it.  I'm hoping to have regular postings up for all of next week.

(And for those of you who, like me, didn't get to go to BlogHer09, my posts will have NOTHING to do with it, so perhaps some refreshing reads?  :)

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Reader Poll: Two Peas or Three Peas in a Pod?

So for awhile now, people have been saying that Bean is a definite mini-Mom and C has her Daddy's looks.  But check this out:

I can't stand the cuteness.  But good gracious, they look more alike than I had realized.  I do think that the real winners in the look-alike contest are these two:

I guess I should put myself in some of these pics for comparison's sake.  Meh.  Maybe soon. 

Anyway, what do you think? 

And taking bets now:  if we do have one of each, what's to become of this little one?  The missing blend?

Letting Go Can Break Your Heart

The other day, the girls and I met a friend and her daughter at a big playground in the area.  C is obviously too small to leave alone to climb around.  (OK, ok... she's far too brave and mischievous to let alone).  So I made the conscious decision to let Bean play on her own for the first time.  I've been trying hard to give her a little bit of independence.  I told her that as long as she played where I could see her and she could see me, she could do as she pleased.

I don't think 15 seconds passed before she had made friends with a rowdy little bunch of kids around her age and scrambled the playground playing hide and seek with them.  I caught up with her a few times only to be breathlessly told that she had to get going to be the hider for the current game.

A mom complimented me on her manners and then grinned as she told me about how Bean had gathered up her rag-tag bunch, (many who were a smidge older), and organized the hide-and-seek game.

Ah, my little first-born boss.

A bit later, C was on a bench eating (again), when I heard Bean burst into tears.  I handed C to my friend and ran across the playground where I caught up with my very hot, sweaty, and very sad girl.

I asked her what happened.  "Some big kids hurt my feelings and made me sad!"

Somehow, she lost interest in the lengthy game of hide-and-seek and decided to join in on a group of older kids playing house only to be neatly rebuffed that she couldn't play with them because she wasn't big enough.

"But Mama!  I'm a big girl!"  She sobbed as I rubbed her shoulders and assured her that yes, she was big.

I wanted to find the group of kids and show them big.  (Even if it was big around instead of very tall).  No one makes my girl cry like that.

But I didn't.  I hugged my very sweet, very small, (but very big), three year old and reminded her that she had made some lovely friends who were quite nice and who were happy to play with her.  And I tried to mend my own heart as well.

Bean eventually calmed down and after a minute, peered up at me,


"Yeah, sweetie?"

"Can I find those big kids and show them to you so you can see?"

I let her lead me around for awhile, but we didn't find them.  All the better.  I wouldn't have said anything.  But it healed me a bit to know that she still knew I would protect her whenever she asked.  And that's not going to change for a long, long time.

Monday, July 20, 2009

CSA - Week... Err.... I don't remember?

I think I skipped a week in there somewhere but I'm back!  This is a small sampling of this past Friday's take.  We got a few more apples than a share would provide (ok, a lot more), because he asked if we could give them away to others.  Missing from the picture are the bread, the tomatoes, the green peppers, and the cucumbers are mixed in with the squash and zucchini.

The cool little red balls above the shelf with the peaches, eggs, and stuff are plums.  Tiny little plums.  But man, they are TASTY.  I've never seen one that small.  I think they're Shaun's favorite fruit, so they're almost gone already. Perfect little snacks.

And no, my fridge is rarely that clean and neat.  Mmmm, nesting. 

Monday, July 13, 2009

10 Things

It's been a cranky few days around here for this pregnant woman.  I will not go as far as to say that I have been acting a trifle insane lately and if that wonderful guy that I share this house with dares to even mention that fact, things might get ugly.  Ahem.

Anyway, today's been a rather nice day.  And I haven't yelled at anyone.  So I figure it'd be nice to write down 10 things or so that I'm thankful for so that when I my head starts spinning around and I lose my cool a smidge (heh), I can remember what it's like to be at least partially sane. 

So here goes:

(And I make no promises about the introspection or deepness of this list...  None).

1. My laundry chute.  I love this little quirk of construction so much that when we started putting in the downstairs bathroom, I strongly requested that we construct some sort of cabinet to ensure that the beloved chute would stay.

2.  Rural surroundings.  We're not far from suburban life, but on our street, I can easily walk out into the front yard in my PJs and not see a soul drive up or down our road for the entire day.  Not that I'd ever walk out in my PJs.  Not me.

3.  Sesame Street.  Both of my kids love Sesame Street.  So much so that I can actually catnap while they watch and feel refreshed enough afterwards to function through until bedtime.  This will come in handy when the new little guy comes along.

4.  The internet. I feel connected to the outside world.  I think motherhood had to be a bit lonely and scary in the past.  Yes, I think it still can be, but it's nice to know that I can tap out a quick email to a friend or google something and touch the world outside of our house when I need a connection. 

5.  Our yard.  It's shady 80% of the day.  It's surrounded by trees.  It's fenced.  And my kids love, love, love being outside.  (And I love not having to chase them for being too close to the street).

6.  This bizarre MD summer.  For some weird reason, we've had the most humid-less summer I think I've ever experienced.  We're in mid-July and on most days, we can go out in the morning and it's almost chilly outside.  It's a good summer to be pregnant. 

7.  My pillows.  Amy gave me two pillows that are currently the love of my life at bedtime.  Love. Them.  Then there's the Temperpedic pillows.  And the two super soft feather pillows.  And the huggy pillow.  I sleep in a nest, not a bed. 

8.  Special K.  It's the best cereal in the world.  Special K with fresh strawberries and whole milk = Mommy's little miracle breakfast. 

9.  The rare times in my day when I can pee in peace.  Pottying in peace is highly underrated.  You think it's funny to pee with the door open when you're in college.  Then you have kids and you wonder whether it's too much to have the designers of Fort Knox craft a door for you so that you may handle your business alone.  In private.   

10.  That 10 spaces weren't nearly enough for all the awesomeness I've got going on in life.  I need to remember that when I'm feeling less than awesome. 

Happy Monday, friends.  What are you thankful for?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Tacit Simplicity - Head Protection Can Be Darn Cute

(M and V, this makes me think of you guys every time Bean wears it.  Bunnies!) 

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Spring Spendervention: TJ Maxx and Marshalls

This past January, I was given the opportunity to enjoy some fun shopping experiences at TJ Maxx and Marshalls.  (As if I needed convincing).  Both stores are high on my list for discounted name brand clothing and accessories.  The TJ Maxx in our area is HUGE and definitely has far more clothing and shoes than some others that I've been to.  So they come in handy when we're searching for those particular things that we'd have a hard time paying retail prices to get. 

Let's start with a little story.  Once upon a time, long, long ago, Shaun had a pair of Ralph Lauren Polo khaki shorts that he loved.  He loved them so much that after about 5 years of wear, he wore several holes into them that rendered them quite unusable in any public situation.

I finally managed to relegate them into the trash and for several years after, every time it came time to get new shorts, Shaun would mournfully lament the fact that the beloved shorts were gone and that a new pair was well beyond our budget.  This year, he commandeered one of my gift cards and left on a mission.  When he came home, he waved his TJ Maxx bag in the air triumphantly.  A replacement pair of Polo shorts had been acquired.  He was quite pleased.  And at over 65% off retail price, The bargain hunter in me was pleased.

So yes, we like our TJ Maxx.  We're also Marshalls fans.  Marshalls tends to have things beyond clothes and shoes, such as housewares, toys, etc.  Recently, we "redid" our upstairs bathroom.  We didn't have it in the budget to replace the vanity or lighting fixture, but with a little paint, the room was well on its way to a needed update.  To complete the redecoration, we got an adorable curtain and two pretty matching towels from Marshalls for far less than what it would have cost at a department store.  And now my bathroom has transcended from outdated to cute in a few easy steps.  (I'll have pictures soon, I promise!)

I have a million happy stories of how we end up saving money at these stores.  The long and short is that in this economy?  Who has the cash to pay full price for anything?  Yeah, neither do I.  So do yourself a favor and if you're going to spend some money, at least save as much as you can and head to Marshalls and TJ Maxx first.

Friday, July 10, 2009

C-Rex - A Very Belated 14 Month Update

Oy, sorry there C-Monkey...  time got away from me this month.  Perhaps it's because I've been chasing you all across the ever living earth, trying to keep you out of too much trouble. 

I had mentioned a few months ago that I was excited for you to start walking.  After all, I had said, it'd slow you down for awhile.  That was true.  You were slow for about 11 minutes and then you cranked on the hyper speed and haven't slowed down since. 

Add to that a healthy dose of your father's mischievous streak and I've got my hands full.  Regularly, you will venture off of the deck in the backyard and make a bee line for whatever happens to catch your interest.  This happens in the course of .3 seconds.  One minute you're happily playing in the sand table with Bean, and the next, you're across the yard trying to eat rocks.  Or chalk.

You're an odd duck of a kid, probably as a result of having me as a mother.  (After all, no one claims I'm normal).  Lately, your favorite thing to do around the house is to place a purple plastic bucket over your head and walk around.  You can't see a darn thing so it inevitably ends up with you walking into a wall or a cabinet.  You sit down with a bump, take the bucket off, and say, "ow, OW!" over and over until I say, "C, you ok?"  Then you'll nod, stand up, replace the bucket, and take off again.  Yeah, I have no idea.  But it cracks me up.

You sleep through the night.  YOU SLEEP THROUGH THE WHOLE NIGHT WITHOUT WAKING UNTIL A NORMAL HOUR HITS.   It took a long, long time and I definitely don't for a minute regret giving you what you needed to make that happen.  But eegads, girl, I'm glad we've finally made it.  (Although your timing is a little rough... I'm now having to get up to pee every three hours... *sigh*)

You're as much a talker as your sister and just recently, you've been able to imitate most words that I say.  Your current favorites are "ow," "down," "up," "ew," "woof," "cheese," and "eeeeeeeee!"  OK, that last one isn't a word, but you certainly resort to that one often when you can't get words out that I understand. 

"Cheese" is my favorite.  It's not in the context of food, but rather it's accompanied by a large, toothy grin that I find totally irresistible.  Bean loves it too.  When she wants to get you giggling, she'll "cheese" back and forth with you until you're both cracking up.

You love being outside, eating fruit, dancing with your sister, pretending to bite our toes, and being snuggled when you're sad.  You hate food with weird textures, being told no, wearing clothes, being restrained when you want to be on the move, going to bed when you think there's a party going on, and having people in your way.

You're quite the little ball of hilarious, sweet, and mercurial sunshine.  As one of my favorite books says, "I love your top side and your bottom side.  I love your inside and your outside.  I love your good side and your bad side.  I love your laughter and tears.  From the top of your head, to the tip of your toes, I love you more than you know."


Thursday, July 9, 2009

CSA Haul

I'm so very behind on these and since Shaun's going in tomorrow for our weekly portion, I figured I should catch up and post last week's haul, even if it's slightly cheating.  (You'll see why in a minute). 

For the record, I'm LOVING this CSA stuff.  This is our first year and we've totally hit on an amazing farm.   So, for my local friends, check out Breezy Willow Farm for next year.  Totally worth it. 

Anyway, here's our loot:

OK, so quick disclaimer on why this is cheating a bit.  I had set all the produce from the CSA on our corner counter which happens to be where the other produce is stored, so not all of this is CSA stuff... the watermelon, pineapple, cantaloupe and spaghetti squash are grocery store purchases.  The taters are from the previous week.

This week we had tomatoes, green beans, spinach, mushrooms, beets, funny shaped squash, zucchini, red leaf lettuce, a cucumber, blueberries, eggs, and cheese rolls, (which were so unbelievably delicious I couldn't stand it).

It's like my birthday presents are coming in the form of food every Friday.  Love. It.  :)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

So She Has a Hint of Mischeif, Too

Yesterday, I was trying to get dinner ready for the girls and they were VERY ready to eat.

Note:  VERY ready to eat = cranky, squirrelly, prone to fighting and LOUD

So, to stave off the inevitable pull of toddlers underfoot, I put a movie on and left them to their own devices. 

Oh, another side note:  C loves, loves, loves climbing into boxes, baskets, bins...  any form of storage, no matter what size.  The only problem that tends to arise is when wants out, because while she can get in, she has a hard time escaping.  (This totally works to my advantage sometimes). 

Anyway, the girls were occupied watching a quality episode of Word World, and I had almost finished making the three of us dinner. 

Oh right, one more side note:  Bean likes to push C around when she's in a bin or basket.  C loves it and Bean thinks it's hilarious to have control.

So dinner was about to be on the table and I heard C start to squeal.  Then she stopped.  When I heard her again, she sounded she was far away.  Curious, I walked into the living room.  I could still hear C, but hadn't the foggiest as to where she was.  Bean was quietly watching the end of her show.

"Um, Bean?  Where's C?"

Bean turned towards me with a smile on her face that I could only describe as mildly diabolical and said, "I took her for a ride... and left her back in the other room.  She was LOUD."

For all the times that poor Bean gets picked on by C, I think Bean doled out the payback. 

Monday, July 6, 2009

Just When I Thought I Was on a Roll, I Realize Something Else is Doing the Rolling

This morning, the four of us were running around in various states of hurry.  Shaun was getting ready for another day of working on the downstairs bathroom, Bean was working hard at being three and asking me the same question a million times, I was trying desperately to get the kids and myself ready to walk out the door, and C was settling into her usual mischeivous ways. 

We live in a rancher.  The only set of steps in our house lead to the basement and have a door that latches closed at the top.  We keep the door closed at all times to prevent Miss C from toppling down the steps.  We've never had a problem remembering and often, we'll remind each other to double check when we see the kids round the corner to head into the kitchen. 

Until today. 

As Shaun and his friend were carrying things from a truck into the basement, the door didn't latch closed properly on one of their trips.  Because C is a magnet for mischeif, she knew.  And off she went. 

I had run into Bean's room for a comb and when I came out, C was missing.  Further investigation revealed that she had not only opened the door, but had carefully crawled about halfway down.  I didn't want to scare her into standing, so I started to go down the steps quietly and said, "C..."

She looked up, grinned, stepped backwards into space and tumbled down a half a flight of stairs, head over heels. 

I think I said a bad word or five as I raced down to check on her.  Arms and legs were moving fine so Shaun, who had gotten to her first, (I move slow, I'm a pregnant whale), scooped her up.  She was NOT happy.

When he handed her to me, she wanted nothing more than to snuggle up with her blanket on my shoulder.  I ran through my mental checklist of signs for concussions:

Trouble Walking
Drooping Eyes

And so on and so on... With each symptom that ran through my head, I got more and more alarmed.  She was sleepy!  And seemed anxious!  And definitely was having trouble walking!  It was almost like she was DIZZY!  I looked at her for a minute, panicking.

Then I remembered.  She's a toddler.  She has those symptoms EVERY DAY. 

Turns out, the kid is fine.  No concussion or other bodily harm aside from some scrapes.

Way to panic, Mama. 

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


Bean's been up to her usual hilarity lately.  Here's a few of her latest funnies:

Bean:  "You're nice, but my other Mommy is my favorite."

Me:  "Your other Mommy?"

Bean:  "Yeah! She has curly hair and she's tall!  And... and... she's from Texas!" 

Me: "Oh!  What's her name?"

Bean:  "Shoomaroofua"

(I think I'm pretty safe as favorite Mommy as I've yet to spot Ms. Shoomaroofua around the house).

Me:  "Hey Beanie Bean, what do you think you want to be when you grow up?"

Bean:  "Ummm... maybe a doctor!  Or a cooker!  Or an aminal doctor... or...  a mermaid!!"

My sister, Bean and I were playing in her kitchen area in our family room.  Bean was assigning roles, as is her first-born tendancy to do. 

Bean:  "You're the mommy, I'm the sweetheart, and you're the fetch!"

Me:  "The fetch?"

Bean:  "Yeah!  The fetch!"

Me:  "What's a fetch?"

*Total exasperated sigh from the preschooler*

Bean:  "A FETCH, mommy.  You fetch the food for me so I can eat it.  A fetch!"

She cracks me up.  Love that kid.

Gro-Baby Cloth Diaper System

I have to admit, I'm intrigued by these, the Gro Baby Cloth Diapers.  I don't necessarily know that I'd love them to pieces as I am with my pocket diapers.

Something about using the same shell throughout a day kind of gives me the heebie jeebies.  But I've never tried a system that does that, so I don't know.  Plus, these have snaps to keep the liners in place, which might elimate the mess. 

I like that they're one-sized and the colors are pretty.

I'm hoping to follow up my initial cloth diaper review with another run through, this time with a ton of diapers that I hadn't reviewed in my initial posting.  Hopefully the Gro-Baby diapers will be amongst those reviewed!

Are there any parents out there that have tried them?  What do you think?

Recipe for a Break

Ingredients needed:
    2 bored, whiny kids
    1 large bed sheet
    Countless bowls, spoons, cups and pans
    A large container of rice
    A loose grip on your OCD tendencies

     1.  Spread the sheet out over as much of the floor as possible.  The more area covered, the easier clean-up will be later.  Dark sheets are a bonus.
     2.  Spread the utensils and dishes around.  This will stir up the kids' curiosity and they will momentarily stop whining.
     3.  Allow them to explore the dishes for a minute before unveiling the secret ingredient.  Place the tub of rice in the middle of the sheet and tell them to have fun.

     4.  Step back and watch your one year old taste uncooked rice.  Watch her spit it out and commence dumping and digging rice instead. 
     5.  When you're satisfied they won't eat much of the rice and they're otherwise entertained, sneak away to do those chores you've been trying to do all morning but weren't able to due to the kids around your ankles.

      6.  Check on them periodically only to discover them still gainfully occupied.
     7.  Repeat steps 5-6 for an HOUR AND A HALF. 
     8.  Consider the day a success for all parties involved.

 (For the record, Bean would NOT look at the camera, hence the pics of my C and none of Miss Bean)

Also, cleanup was a breeze... use the sheet to dump the rice back in the container, store away / wash the dirty utensils and vacuum up the stray grains.  Piece of cake.  And WELL worth it for an hour and a half of play time with no fighting, whining, begging, hitting, etc.  Well worth it. 
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