Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A book all Mommies-To-Be should read.

Now, I’m not being paid for this review/promotion and I wasn’t asked to do it either. This is just one of my favorite books and I thought I would mention it. ;o)

I think many new (and not new) mommies go into pregnancy and motherhood with some pretty unrealistic ideals. Yeah, you can say unrealistic is harsh, but for the most part, yeah, they’re unrealistic. Pregnancy is not always easy or perfect, it very rarely is. Having a newborn isn’t easy at all. Shoot, having a child of almost any age isn’t always easy. A woman will go into pregnancy with all these hopes and expectations and then be crushed when some of them don’t go as she planned. Be it the way the pregnancy progresses, her OBGYN, or her birth. (Though from being a parenting forum I must tell you I hear so many times about women being just crushed when they did not get that ideal perfect birth they planned and then end up being scarred forever because of it. – insert sarcasm in that last bit)

Let me give you my most wisest piece of Yoda-esque advice:
”Perfection, can not one plan and organize into pregnancy and children.”
(imagine scratchy Yoda voice in that convoluted way he speaks)

I got Jennifer Weiner’s “Little Earthquakes” somewhere between having Ryan and Bella. Since I hadn’t read any of her other books before this one I didn’t set out reading it with any expectations. (As you will find many of the negative comments on it put that it doesn’t hold up against this book or that book by her.) What I came away with after reading this book is the thought that an author finally got it. This isn’t a how-to book on pregnancy or child rearing. It’s a book that follows 3 women through the ends of their pregnancies and most of that first year after having the babies, and through the grief and coping of another woman whose baby has died. It isn’t all sunshine, flowers, and rainbows. It shows how hard it can be. Another big comment in negative reviews is people saying they don’t like the negative to positive ratio. That it doesn’t show enough of why the women would love their babies if it is so hard and tiring. If you’re a first-time pregnant mommy let me tell you this, yes, it is very very hard, but when it’s your baby, for the most part, that fact alone is why it’s worth all the trouble and sleep deprivation. Yes, these women go through many worst-case scenarios; be it the death of the child, husband getting laid off, cheating husband, or mother-in-law from hell. BUT you can find a way to relate to almost all of them and see bits and pieces of your life in one of theirs.

This is a great great book. (Yes double adjective necessary.) While I’m not saying all (or maybe any) of these things will happen to you, it helps you to relax and see that it’s ok to just go with the flow. Things don’t have to be perfect or even close to it. If you find something that works for you, go for it! As the author says in the interview at the end of the book, “Nobody can make a mother feel worse about her screw-ups than another woman.” Don’t listen to those women who want to make you feel bad, you’ll know what works for you and your baby.

Monday, September 27, 2010

When you’re sick.

When you’re sick you need:

  • a comfy couch to lay on
  • lots of comfy pillows to prop yourself up
  • your most favoritest blanket
  • a good book
  • all remotes within easy reach of comfy couch
  • soup and crackers

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When you’re sick you need condensed soup. Forget about all those grown up style soups. Condensed is best when you’re sick. Reminds you of your mommy/grandmother taking care of you when you felt bad. (Unless you were lucky enough to have a mommy/grandmother nice enough to actually MAKE you real from scratch soup which mine would on occasion do.)

My mommy/grandmother believed condensed Chicken Noodle Soup was the go-to cure for everything… except sore throats. If you had a sore throat you needed condensed Tomato. It was warm salty and felt oh so good on your ouchy throat. I even have my own sick-soup cup.

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I am set for this sick day.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Go ahead call me selfish.

Do you know what I am sick of? I am sick of hearing that breast milk is always best. I am sick of hearing that if you didn’t nurse you were either selfish or just didn’t try hard enough. I’m sick of hearing nursing is hard and only the mothers who are selfish or uneducated switch to formula.

Here’s a little reality check for those who wish to tell me breast milk is always best.

DSCN1127My daughter, Bella, when she was born weighed 7 lbs 2 oz.
While she was by no means a chunky baby, she was healthy and looked healthy.
I nursed her. Not on a schedule, whenever she felt like it and for however long she wanted to nurse. I didn’t have milk supply issues. It always felt like I had more than enough, but she nursed so much and so often it wasn’t a problem.
I loved nursing her and had hoped to be able to continue nursing her for at least a year or even longer.

Fast forward to Belly’s 4 month check up (which she had at 5 months)

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By the time Belly went in to have her check up we did notice that she was much, and I do mean much, skinner than it would seem possible with how much she ate. I wasn’t too concerned because I am tiny, and Zach is tiny. But even with Zach being small he never seemed to be getting smaller, just the same skinniness to height ratio he’d always been. Belly was noticeably skinnier. Family members remarked on it, hell strangers remarked on it. But we didn’t worry because surely we’d know if something was wrong.
She was still mainly nursing at this point, but I’d been encouraged by family and my grandmother, who is a nurse, to try adding a little more to her diet to see if it looked like she would put on weight.

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Take a moment and look at that baby… does she look like a healthy 5 month old baby to you?

I took Bella to her check up and it was the worst day of my life.

Since Bella had been born she’d only gained a total of 2 1/2 pounds. A few weeks before when I had weighed her for fun she’d been a 1/2 pound heavier than she was at the check up. Bella (up to this point) caught almost every sickness that was around… even if no one she was near was sick. That with her weight worried her doctor. So for the next several months we went through lots of tests, and doctors appointments to find out what was wrong. Her doctor encouraged me to keep feeding her on demand, even to feed her even if she didn’t seem especially hungry, and to try adding just a little more stuff other than just breast milk to her diet.

By the next month Bella did not want to nurse and my milk dried up so we switched full time to formula with a little cereal or baby food mixed in.

And Bella finally noticeably started gaining weight.

Her tests all came back fine and in the end her doctor (along with some of the specialists) agreed it was the breast milk that was the problem. Either her body wasn’t digesting it properly or there was something wrong with the breast milk. Of course by the time they came to this conclusion it was too late to test the milk since I’d long before dried up.

The day my baby developed her first set of rolls I was so happy I cried.

When, at 9 months old she finally completely outgrew her 0-3 month clothes I was beyond happy.

So, don’t you dare tell me breast milk is always best, and don’t you dare tell me that mothers who switch to formula are just lazy or selfish. Me refusing to put her on formula full time or to give her more because I wanted her to be exclusively breastfed was probably one of the most selfish acts I ever committed. Is the case with my daughter the norm? No. But blanket statements are deadly, so think of that the next time you tell someone that breast is always best.

Lastly, my daughter, the healthy happy almost 1 1/2 year old who now weighs 23 pounds.
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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Skulls can be pretty too!

Well, they can! And they can be girly to boot… without adding stupid bows to them. Let me show you this absolutely adorable dress that was handmade by SIGnature Creations. When Astrid (the owner/creator/goddess of fabric) posted the burp clothes made with the Dia de los Muertos fabric I had a mini-heart stutter. I’d been roaming Etsy looking for cute skull fabric dresses using those types of skulls. I love the colors and designs to them. The only problem was no one was making toddler dresses or outfits with them. And all the outfits for older kids I found using them were getting close to $200. I was in dread of never getting the Belly anything with these beautiful patterns.

I’d already been toying with the idea of ordering Belly a dress from Astrid, I was thinking more traditionally Halloween-y as I hate toddler costumes for Halloween so I was just going to order her a festive dress to trick or treat in. But as soon as I saw that fabric I knew THAT was what I wanted. When Astrid told me the price ($40 including shipping – which is actually a really good deal) I was afraid John would veto the dress… which was likely anyway since John did not share the opinion that any skulls could possibly be cute on his daughter. However, Astrid agreed to let me go ahead and place the order she’d just wait to start it till I payed. So I used my Shabby Princess payment, came in the 1st of September, to pay the bulk of the $40 and John agreed to let me use from $15 from checking. That makes 19ish days from the time I paid until the dress came in. Considering she works on several orders at a time, has triplets, and had to ship it, really the payment to arrival time wasn’t bad at all.

The dress… it is just freaking gorgeous. I love it. And Belly loves it too. She screamed at me when I took it off of her. When we got to my mom’s yesterday to show her the dress, Belly had gotten to the point where she was lifting up the whole front of the skirt to get a better look at it. At the store the dress got TONS of compliments. And I do mean a lot. It got a few funny looks too, but mostly compliments.

Well here it is!
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Monday, September 20, 2010

Cub Scouts Camp Out

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So last weekend John and Zach went on a Cub Scouts camping trip. ((It was Zach’s very first time camping – he was beyond excited)) They camped up at Fort Pillow State Park. I told John, later, how ironic that was seeing as how both him AND Zach forgot their pillows. John commandeered my camera for the trip… which initially bugged the crap out of me, especially since John sucks at taking pictures. BUT since he came back with some really really good ones, I have a feeling I’ll now be forced to hand it over more often. They had a great time. Even John. It was their first Cub Scouts activity so I wasn’t sure how well either would do, but John says now that he’s seen how other kids act around their parents… maybe our’s aren’t so bad after all. lol

Here are some of the pictures from the trip:
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And lastly one of my hotty hubby taken by the very talented Zach-Zoo:

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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Bedtime Prayers with Ryan

“Dear Lord, thank you for this day, and thank you for giving Mommy and Ryan special Mommy-Ryan time tonight…”

“Yeah cause I don’t want to go to Cub Scouts. It’s stupid”

“Ryan we don’t say stupid. Thank you for our yummy food we ate for dinner…””

“But it was just plain old cereal.”

“…that was just plain old cereal. Help Ryan control his actions and have a good day at school tomorrow and not move his clip…”

“But Mommy, I already moved it twice today.”

“…and let him have good dreams tonight…”

“But I have hundreds of dreams in my head, and some are bad.”

“…and help him wake up good for his Daddy in the morning…”

“I won’t. I’m going to be ‘noxious.”

“…and not be obnoxious. Keep Your arms around him. In Jesus name, Amen.”

“Mommy, God likes it when I ‘rupt you during prayers. He said so.”

Monday, September 6, 2010

Day 11 of 30

Day 11- Another picture of you

It’s supposed to be pictures of me with my friends, but I have no other pictures than the one’s I’ve already shared. So… I’ll do some with me and the kiddos.

With the Zach Zoo
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With Ryan Ryan
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With the Belly Pie
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Friday, September 3, 2010

Day 10 of 30

Day 10- Songs you listen to when you are Happy, Sad, Bored, Hyped, Mad

Well… I do have some stuff I listen to when in moods, but it’s never the same every time, so how about what I listen to most often when doing stuff. (It’ll all be albums, not individual songs)

Cleaning -
I need fast paced, easy to sing and dance to music while cleaning. Something to take my mind off the fact that I am doing something I thoroughly hate to do. lol
The Misfits “Famous Monsters”
Sublime “Sublime”
Katy Perry “One of the Boys”
Red Hot Chili Peppers “What Hits”

Bedtime -
Bedtime I need music. I can NOT fall asleep with quiet. And, not so shockingly, I’ve listened to the same thing at bedtime my whole life. Classical. Our local public radio station does classical from 8 pm to 5 am and that’s what I listen to.

Cooking -
Again, something that’s easy to sing along with. I like cooking though, I just like having something that will distract me, but not distract me so much that I screw up dinner. lol
Taylor Swift “Fearless”
Gym Class Heroes “As Cruel As School Children”
The Postal Service “Give Up”
Incubus “Make Yourself”

Knitting -
lol Yes, knitting has its own music selection too. Actually, I only listen to one band while knitting. Helps me concentrate and keep my rhythm going while I knit.
My Chemical Romance “Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge” and “The Black Parade”

Driving -
This one is sort of varied (in styles) since it depends on who is with me in the van at the time. Except for Ryan and me, we all like different kids of music and I try to accommodate each of us.
Dan Zanes “Catch That Train,” “Family Dance,” and “Rocket Ship Beach”
Maylene and the Sons of Disaster “II”
The Offspring “Smash” and “Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace”
Every Time I Die “Gutter Phenomenon” and “The Big Dirty”
The Dillinger Escape Plan “Ire Works” and “Miss Machine”

Scrapping -
I will list individual songs here, because I actually took my favorite songs from all my music and made a playlist that I keep on shuffle that I listen to while I scrap. (Or am just on the computer when no one else is around.)
”Tree Hugger” by Kimya Dawson and Antsy Pants
”The Way I Loved You” by Taylor Swift
”The Goodnight Waltz” by Dan Zanes
”Mr. Brightside” by The Killers
”Hot N Cold” by Katy Perry
”The Queen and I” by The Gym Class Heroes
”Consequence” by Incubus
”Inaudible Melodies” by Jack Johnson
”The District Sleeps Alone” by The Postal Service
”Rock N Roll High School” by The Ramones

Well, there you go, my music.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Day 9 of 30

Day 09- Something you’re proud of in the past few days

Well… I was proud of finally making myself a doctor’s appointment (supposed to be for today) but when I had to take Ryan in Monday I rescheduled it for the 10th since we can’t afford two doctor’s appointments in one week. I guess I can be proud that I rescheduled it instead of just cancelling.