Monday, January 31, 2011

And the diet is OVER

After 2 weeks of feeling like I was starving myself, being exhausted, worn down, irritable and craving all things delicious, Samantha's stools showed no blood, so the diet is over!

And let me tell you, that was a hard diet to stick to.  I almost cracked yesterday.  As I sat there playing Hedbanz with the family, and the tin filled with crumbs from what I can only assume was a delicious tasting twix cheesecake for David's birthday sat right next to me, it took every ounce of will power I had not to stick my finger in it and finish off the yumminess of it!

But, I did it!  Of course, when I went to take my vitamins on Friday night, I looked at the back for the first time since I bought them mid pregnancy.  I had a palm to face moment when in dark, black, bold letters I read:  Allergen: SOY.  Nice.

Aw Nuts

Let me tell ya, there are plenty of opportunities in life where the phrase "aw nuts" is perfectly acceptable to point out disappointment or disdain with something in life.  I would bet there are thousands of opportunities.  You know, you lock yourself out of the house, you step in a big puddle, you forget to tuck your tag in, you lose the back of an earring and on and on and on.  It is not acceptable to say "aw nuts" in response to someone informing you their son isn't at this appointment because he passed away.  It just simply isn't an ok response.

Shall we take it from the top?

As you may know from previous posts, Kaitlyn was having some serious migraine issues.  She had an MRI last spring that showed her sinuses were all completely filled and inflamed.  It also showed an unrelated cyst on her brain that will be reevaluated in 3-5 years.  The neurologist sent us to an ENT doctor.  The ENT doctor thought it was for sure allergies, she's been treated for them since she was 2, and it is probably just not being treated well enough.  He sent us to an allergist and said he would follow up.  We went to the Allergist, Kaitlyn completed the annoying and itchy allergy test.  Guess who wasn't allergic to ANYTHING??  That's right, Kaitlyn.  The allergist thought it could be reflux, cystic fibrosis or her tonsils.  She went on pepcid and was ordered a sodium chloride test to rule out cystic fibrosis and sent back to the ENT for her tonils.  Pepcid did not help.  I never once believed it could be cystic fibrosis, but we were scheduled for the test regardless.  We showed up for our scheduled test downtown and after being there for an hour, they could not locate the materials they need for the test.  Fabulous.  We went home, they rescheduled.  We went again, and again they could not find the material for the test.  The ENT had enough and out came her tonsils and adenoids.  Never thought about the test again.  Until Friday.  When the allergist's assistant called.  Kaitlyn has had a sinus infection since the removal of her tonsils.  Which means the surgery may not have been effective.  If we wanted insurance to continue to cover treatment for future sinus infections, we had to have the test done.  I told them fine, but it could be scheduled for school time. And if they aren't ready for us while we're there, I would literally explode.  They scheduled us for 9 AM Saturday morning.  Cue to Saturday ;)

We sign in for the test.  The elderly nurse we have the appointment went is incredibly nice.  She's friendly, she's telling Kaitlyn all the reasons she doesn't need to be nervous and explaining how the test was going to work.  They put gelatin disks on Kaitlyn's forearm and have an electrode like device on top of it to stimulate the muscles underneath to force sweat to come to the surface.  The electrode is aggravating, so she is talking to Kaitlyn for the 5 minutes it takes for the test to work.  She asks about the baby in the stroller, Kaitlyn tells her all about Samantha, who is starting to wake up.  She goes on to tell us about how her daughter grew up with 4 brothers and was so excited to have two girls.  She loves being a mom to sisters, has no desire for anymore and they have such a great time together.  The nurse keeps talking to Kaitlyn about this.  Chatty McKaitlyn tells her that she has a brother and a sister.  The nurse asks me where my son is, is he older?  Did he get to stay home.  I respond with "he passed away 3 years ago to SIDS."  She replied "aw nuts."

"Aw Nuts"

Seriously lady?  She then began to talk about how she lost one of her sons in a car accident a few years ago and tells me about some poems she has read that puts life and time into perspective.  She was quite kind after the deafening silence that followed her statement.  And while I'm sure she meant no harm by it, it's a comment that I couldn't find a reaction for.

In the end, Kaitlyn sweat up a storm, the nurse ran the labs while we waited and Kaitlyn does not have cystic fibrosis.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

In the Nick of Time

As I blogged earlier this week, we were given the oh so fun task of collection Samantha's poo for 3 days, smearing it onto special little cards and taking it to the lab.  Our little miss likes to go in the evenings and every couple of days, she'll skip a day.  I was really hoping she would just do great, go in the morning, at home, finish up on Friday and get the results back in the 3 or so days the dr. thoughts we would.  Which would mean, if there was no blood in her stools, I could go back to eating!  YAY!!  Sounds like a great plan right?

Wednesday went great.  She went at home, I tried to get the mucousy gross stuff smeared neatly on the little card.  It was ok.  Thursday night though was another story.  I normally like to get into bed by like 10, asleep by 10:12 and be good.  By 10, she hadn't pooped yet for the day.  Knowing that this would set us back through the weekend, I waited.  And waited.  And waited.  Finally, at 11:45, with only 15 minutes to go, she went.  I never thought I would be so glad to see poop.  Phew, I could go to bed.

Friday morning, she went by 9 and we had all the samples to the lab, I figured this way we might get an answer by Monday.  I asked the lab tech when my doctor should have the results.  She said it normally takes a week??!!!???  Holy Moly!

Since then, she has been nursing every hour and a half.  Around the clock.  She is either going through her 3 month growth spurt early or my supply is decreasing :(  I worry it's the later and I am going to try and bulk on some calories and lots of water the next couple of days and just hope for the best!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Follow Up: The Diet, The Apnea Machine, Cloth Diapers

This morning Samantha had a doctor's appointment to go over everything we left in the air last week.  We discussed her poop and the apnea machine.

Poop first.  I have now been 9 days without soy, dairy, eggs, berries, nuts, chocolate and I cut out glutens JUST to be safe.  There has been NO change in her poop at all.  He said that he's never seen it take longer than 2 weeks to make a change.  My instructions are to collect poop over the next three days to be tested by the lab and continue to diet through then.  On Monday, I should get the results back.  If she has any blood in her poop, it is most likely a Milk/Soy Protein Intolerance.  MSPI has a few symptoms:

  • Blood, water or mucous containing stools
  • weight loss
  • chronic congestion
  • repeated vomitting
  • gastroesophageal reflux
  • asthma
  • eczema and/or skin rashes
  • refusing to eat or comfort eating (eating all the time to soothe the stomach)
  • irritability or colic-like behavior
Samantha only has a few symptoms.  Water/Mucous stools (we won't know about the blood until test results are back, vomitting or reflux, but so did Kaitlyn, and comfort eating.  She is a happy, growing baby.  She isn't losing weight, as of today she was up to 12 lbs 13 ounces!  

Most babies outgrow this by 1, and many by 6 months.  The question is, what to do if she is MSPI in the meantime?  Do we switch to a hypoallergenic formula for the next 9 1/2 months?  Or do we, I, stay on the diet for the next 9 1/2 months and continue to breastfeed?  There really isn't a right answer.

The diet has gotten a little easier.  My appetite has decreased.  I've lost weight and energy (and am forbidden by my OB from going to the gym until I am back to getting a lot of calories every day) and I cannot wait to go to McDonald's :P, but it is getting easier.  I am finding more I can eat and enjoying it.  I am loving olive oil, baked potatoes and the like.

On to the apnea machine.  We had a total of 3 alarms.  ALL related to the electrodes being in the wrong place, moving and stuff like that.  Her dr. does not think she has an apnea problem.  But, if the machine makes us feel better he said we can keep it as long as we'd like!

Cloth diapers are next.  They are going great.  I'm getting a routine with them, watching the clock a little more (which isn't a bad thing at all lol) and had only had one leak this week.  And it was today.  I didn't want to wake her when she was sleeping so she was in it from about 8:30 to 1:30 and that was WAY too long.  But, I'm loving them and thinking about ordering more....

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Stylish Blogger Award

Thank you so much to Betsy at My Rotten Eggs for the stylish blogger award!

The rules for accepting this award are:
1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 15 other bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award.

7 things about myself should be fairly easy, I do like to talk about myself!

1. While I don't watch a lot of TV, I make sure to make it count!  By make it count it means that my guilty pleasure is trash TV.  The shows I watch?  Real Housewives of ATL (I <3 Candi!), Teen Mom, 16 & pregnant, Top Chef, 90210 (although I so miss Kelly and Dylan) and House.  To round it out, I do have Fox News in the background through the day.  That makes it ok right?

2. I do not do well if I'm not multi-tasking.  It stresses me out.  If I need to walk to our bedroom, I make sure to find everything I can carry in there to make the trip worth it.  If I am doing dishes I clean all the counters at the same time.  If I'm ironing, while I wait for the iron to rewarm up between shirts, or whatever, I fold clothes.  I get A LOT done through the day, which is awesome, but then I think of things I could have done to make better use of my time.  It's crazy.

3. Speaking of cleaning, I like loading the dishwasher, I like sorting laundry and washing it.  I like all of the dishes and laundry to be clean.  I absolutely detest putting either away.

4. I love pictures.  I can easily do a thousand in a month.  Easily.  And I have a hard time deleting any of them.  Even the blurry, out of focus, too dark, too bright ones.  I just keep thinking, what if I go looking for that particular picture??

5. I. LOVE. FOOD.  I think it's amazing.  Just the bees knees.  It is so yummy, even the not so yummy stuff can easily be made yummier with sauces, dressings, seasonings or chocolate...

6. I love second chances.  I think just about everyone deserves one (unless you've done something beyond repairable obviously) and I am a softy.  Which means I find myself kicking myself for giving the second chance, the third chance, the fourth chance and on and on and on, when I need to just learn better.

7.  I love summer.  I am a tank tops, shorts, flip flops kinda girl.  The water needs to be 80 degrees for me to get in the pool and that's that.  I cannot wait for the seasons to change <3

The blogs I recently began following and enjoy reading:


2. Polka Dots and Ric Rac

3. Baby H, Take 2

BWS tips button


9. i wish you love


11. With a Hopeful Heart

12. Living in the Light

13. This moment in my life

14. Lori Does Maryland


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Well, that's one way to wake up

At about 4:30 AM the apnea monitor sounded.  If that loud beeping noise doesn't make you jump out of your skin out of a nice solid sleep, nothing will.  A quick glance at the monitor showed that her breathing and heartrate  didn't cause the alarm, but rather the wires were loose.  It was fixed and we were good.  For half an hour when she did it again.  I undressed her, reapplied the electrodes, reset the machine and didn't have another problem.

Through the night, she did have painful gas.  The toots she ripped were loud and smelly :(  I felt for her, I truly did.  For the first time in a long time, she didn't poop yesterday.  I'm really hoping that means maybe her poop today will be more normal and we can start adding some real food in.  But, then that gets me wondering, if dairy takes the longest to get out, does that mean that she's allergic to soy?  It's the only other food I eat regularly.  But, who knows, no matter how much I want to speculate, I know I shouldn't.

It is such a gorgeous day today, we have a birthday party to go to and then I'm thinking about taking the girls outside to get some "spring" like pictures.  If it stays like this tomorrow we might put Samantha in her awesome jogging stroller, stick Kaitlyn on her bike and hit the bike trail.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Friday, January 21, 2011

And there goes another week...

For some reason, in my mind the week always ends on Friday.  Saturday and Sunday don't count, I mean, why should they?  They are the in between times.  The fun times.  Then, Monday starts a new week.  I'm not sure when I first starting thinking of time like this.  Maybe when I was in the hospital with Matthew and every Monday was a new week?  But how did Friday work in there?  Who knows, but it's  how I like to think of it.

And it was a good week.  You've read the updates about Samantha's appointment and our fun with the apnea monitor, and the launch of my etsy store, so you have a pretty good idea of what we've been up to.  How about some more details?

Samantha is doing great.  We do have to use the apnea monitor for all of her naps as well as night time sleeping.  Which, for some reason, I didn't expect.  Now, I get to carry it around with us.  Which isn't bad, except that it means her wardrobe is incredibly limited so I can accommodate the wires.  Speaking of wardrobes, I had to clear hers out today to make room for the bigger sizes.  She has officially outgrown all of her 0-3 month clothes.  And I filled up a 30 gallon tub with them.  It was so full I couldn't close the lid.  Note to self: if there is a next time, don't buy so much stuff!  Cloth diapers are also going great.  We've only had 2 leaks.  One she soaked through the diaper (she can be a heavy wetter) and one she just leaked through the leg.  Not too bad, just a little bit really.  I've also given up on the idea of using liners for poopy diapers.  It really isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be.  I've even gotten it down pretty good for when we're out and predicting how many we'll need.  I've also very happy to report that even though the poop diapers have still been green, super runny, slimy and filled with mucous, with a cold water soak and wash  without soap, followed by a hot water wash with just a tiny bit of All free and clear, not a single stain.  LOVE that! 

She's smiling all the time, still having gross diapers, but it might take a while for her to get everything out of her system.  She laughs like crazy and cracks me up and we've been so fortunate.  She goes to sleep around 7, gets up at 2:30 to nurse, goes back to sleep within 10 minutes, is up at 4:30 to nurse again and then up again around 6:30 for 10 min and I wake her up at 7:30.  We take Kaitlyn to school, get back and she sleeps until about 9:30.  Nurses and then sleeps until about 11, which is when I go to the gym.  She nurses and then normally sleeps until about 2.  Nurses, we pick up Kaitlyn and she naps again at 3.  She gets up at about 5 and then eats at 6 and 7 before going to bed.  She's a great sleeper and a great eater.  The only thing that upsets her is being hungry really.  And gassy.  But, hopefully we'll get rid of the later as figure out the food allergy.  It's hard to believe she's nearly 11 weeks.

Kaitlyn is doing awesome.  I was able to talk her into getting her hair cut today and so I jumped on it and got mine cut off too.  Hers looks really cute, it's just a simple bob (which is what I did too) at about her shoulders (which is what I did too) but it looks so much thicker and fuller now.  And healthier.  She really wants it long, it just grows so slow.  I know she's going to be jealous when Samantha's outgrows hers.

Kaitlyn is our sensitive child.  From a young age we've been really big on teaching her and asking her "how would that make you feel" about nearly every action she takes.  Which means that when she feels she is being treated badly, she takes it really personally.  A good example of this happened yesterday.  Every Thursday at school her class goes to the library to check out a book.  They don't get to take the book home, but they can keep it in their desk.  Then, that following Thursday they turn the books in.  Yesterday was their library day.  Kaitlyn turned in her book.  She wasn't allowed to check out a book.  They told her she had one out from December 8.  She argued, it didn't change.  When I pick Kaitlyn up from school we have a ritual, I ask her the following questions: How was your day, what was your favorite part of the day, what was the worst part of the day, did you eat all your lunch, what was the funniest thing that happened.  The answers are usually pretty typical.  But, yesterday she was really upset when she described to me what happened at school.  And really, what's a mom (who isn't allowed chocolate!!!) supposed to do??  Well, I of course called the librarian this morning and let her have it.  Kaitlyn has NEVER been in trouble at school and she felt that way.  The librarian was really apologetic and solved the problem.  I picked up Kaitlyn and her teacher ran after me.  She apologized to me about the problem.  Evidently it was her fault.  She had put the books in the librarian's cubbie to turn them in before break and didn't think anything else of it.  Guess who put them in the wrong cubbie?  Kaitlyn got an apology from the teacher and librarian and got to check out a book today.  So did the two other kids who got accused of the same thing.  So, something good came out of it!

Speaking of school (like all these speaking ofs?), I understand that Kaitlyn does not get a lot of learning out of it.  She is really advanced and just gets bored there.  We also understand the importance of her going to school.  She gets to learn about social interaction, not always getting her way, listening to other authority figures, time management, taking initiative and so on and so forth.  Plus, she gets to see her best friend.  But, we make sure that we challenge her at home.  She can read ANYTHING put in front of her.  It's awesome.  She doesn't get a lot of adult references, but I'm really good with that :)  Math is where it's harder to come up with challenges that are not too challenging so she doesn't get frustrated.  So, I try to start easy and then work it up harder.  And we do a lot in the car, so they have to be paper free.  This weeks challenge has been algebra.  And she is doing awesome!  We started with: if 82 + x = 97, what is x?  And worked our way to more double digit problems.  And now we're working on adding in some multiplication in with it.  As soon as I explained to her that it was like a mystery, she was so excited to practice and is always asking for more problems.  I love that kid.  And she really loved roller skating this week.  She got a lot faster.  Our challenge for next week is to work on her going left right left right instead of left, left, left, right and so on.  Then I know she'll just take off!

Like I said before I got a hair cut today.  About 6-7 inches off so now it's too my shoulders.  I went to a cheap chain place just because it was a super easy cut with nice thick hair.  I told her what I wanted and she asked me several times if I was sure.  I was.  Then she asked if it was ok with my husband.  Um....  What?  Seriously?  Yeah, he loves me for me and likes my hair long or short.  Hell, he said I should get a pixie cut.  Then that led to all of her baby raising advice, like breastfeeding.  It amazed me how she felt it was ok to tell me to make sure I eat right and then asked me how breastfeeding worked.  Again, Um...  Ok.  Whatever.

Our goal this year as been to stay at home more.  Don't rush out and try to do everything with everyone.  Which means I've been good about limiting ourselves to one event a weekend.  Considering I usually do several a day, that's pretty impressive!  I really want to work on spending more time and exerting more energy on our families and our core group of friends.  If there is anything I've learned in my old age it is that quality matters so much more than quantity.  I like the quality that we have.  I feel blessed.

After Matthew passed away, I needed something to do.  I needed to keep my hands and my mind busy and off to those dark thoughts.  So, I started selling tutu skirts and twirl dresses and digital cards and stuff on ebay.  I was going pretty good, selling a lot and staying busy.  I loved it.  Then, I was pregnant again.  We were moving, I miscarried, I went to work while Kaitlyn was in preschool and I lost my drive for it.  So, I stopped.  With Samantha here, Kaitlyn in school for most the day and my desire to stay home more, my drive is back.  I'm glad to of dusted off the sewing machine.  I'm learning new techniques and really having fun with it.

At the end of the day, this was a really good week for us.  We had a lot of fun, made memories, took pictures, smiled, laughed, learned and lived.  We thought about Matthew often, as we always do, spent time with good family and great friends, and really, at the end of the day, isn't that what life is all about?

And with that, I'm going to bed!  Tomorrow is Saturday, so I get to sleep until as late as 9!!  Yay me!!  And we have a birthday party in the afternoon. I'm sure the girls will have a blast.

* sidenote: I feel totally cyberstalked, I had the same visitor visit me 13 times in an hour and a half after yahoo searching denise miller facebook rio linda, not really sure what they are/were expecting? Because I don't like that type of behavior, I am going to be reviewing comments before they are posted and consider going invitation only for a while.  I'm really not in the mood for drama, there are so many more important things in life :) I'm sure you understand! *

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Night one with the Apnea Monitor

At Samantha's appointment on Monday, her doctor was able to see her holding her breath trick that she performs when she sleeps.  He decided we should try an apnea monitor to see what was going on.  Insurance approved it yesterday and around 6 last night a representative from the rental company drove all the way to our house from Shingle Springs.  What a drive!

He showed us how to use it.  How to test the machine, how to put the leads on her, how to use the little belt it comes with, how to read the machine, what the alarms mean and then set them off so we could hear the piercing noise that I'm sure even our neighbors heard.  Then we practiced.  We went over false alarms (he said many times caused by being too close to other electronic equipment and from leads going bad), real alarms and everything in between.

A couple hours later, it was time to get Samantha in bed.  We put her leads on, put her jammies on over them and she was out like a light.  The machine has two sets of lights.  One is for her heart rate and one is for her breathing.  If her heartrate gets above 225 or below 70 beats per minute, the alarm sounds off, if she stops breathing for 20 seconds, it sounds off.  Loudly.  He said part of the reason it sounds so loud is so that it startles baby into "behaving" which is a great thing.

Night one went great.  She slept her 7 hours and then 2 more sets of 2.  We didn't have any alarms, false or otherwise and the longest I saw the breathing monitor go without blinking was 15 seconds.  I swear she is just trying to keep us on our toes!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A New Found Respect

I've heard about people whose kids have severe food allergies.  I know people whose kids have severe food allergies.  You think "man that sucks!" or "wow, I bet that's tough!" and then you go on with your day.  Eating whatever you want.

Then Monday happened and it was pretty obvious that Miss Samantha is allergic to something I'm eating.  Since she can't tell us, I got the orders to cut out: dairy, eggs, berries, nuts, beef and soy for a week, or until she gets normal stools and lessens spitting up, then add one group in at a time.  I thought it would be difficult, but not impossible and came home.

Then, I got hungry and went through the cabinets looking for something to eat.  EVERYTHING has soy in it.  How is this possible?  Even tuna, right there on the can, ingredients: tuna, soy.  Um....  But, I digress.  I found one can of soup and fruit cups that would pass the test.  And headed to the store nearest us, Food Source, feeling very hungry.

At Food Source, I read the labels and put a lot of things back on the shelves.  I ended up with some turkey and gluten free pasta, and some turkey meatballs.  Yum.  But, at least it filled me up.

Yesterday, was even worse.  Nothing sounded good.  I went to raley's to check out their "healthy" section and found a few incredibly expensive things.  Like the vegan, soy-free, fake chocolate chocolate bar.  I thought it would be disgusting, but I was so hungry I didn't even care.  It was actually delicious.  But, it was also $3 and that's a lot for a candy bar.  I found some vegan, soy free fake chicken, rice chips with sea salt (and just devoured the whole bag), some allergen free breads and buns, turkey hot dogs and some breakfast bars.  And some more fruits and veggies.

Yesterday I managed to eat: a banana, chocolate bar, breakfast bar, value fries (wendy's are allergen free), large dr. pepper, 2 turkey hot dogs in gluten and allergen free buns.  I consumed a total of 1595 calories.  I just could not get full and nothing sounded good.

I don't know why I was so surprised this morning when my head was in horrific pain.  Today I've had 2 slices of allergen free cinamon raisin bread with fake, allergen free cream cheese on it, a small glass of rice milk (yuck) and an entire bag of rice chips (6 servings).  Boo to this.

As selfish as it sounds, if it turns out she is allergic to soy, I don't think I could give it up for a year, no matter how much I love nursing or how important I think breastmilk is.  Soy is in EVERYTHING.  And I love food.  It is so yummy.  I have a hard enough time keeping weight on, this is not helping.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

To celebrate my 400th POST!!

Woo-Hoo!  400.  That's a big number.  That's a lot of sharing.  That's a lot of living.  We have truly been through so much in the past 400 posts.

My latest adventure involves a sewing machine, a lot of paper and pencils, my camera, numerous trips to the fabric store and a desire to get my creativity out there.  That's right, I opened an ETSY store.  This will be my one and only shameless plug for it.  But, I want to share with you the giveaway I'm doing :)

To participate in the giveaway, you must be on facebook.  The giveaways are totally and completely easy.  There are two contests running and both earn you anything you'd like in the etsy store.

Contest 1:  "Like" Simple * Lovely * Baby on Facebook.  That's it.  One winner will be chosen randomly.

Contest 2: Post on the wall for Simple * Lovely * Baby on facebook.  The person who has the most "likes" on their comment is the winner.

The deadline for both contests is Wednesday, January 26 at 10 PM PST.  Winners will be announced no later than Thursday afternoon!

My etsy shop can be found at: Simple * Lovely * Baby.  What do you think so far?  I'm working on a few other things but wanted to get started posting what I've completed this weekend!  And if you see anything you like, through Wednesday, January 26, I'm offering 10% off everything.  Coupon Code: BLOGOPEN

Grieving with a Rainbow Baby

The term rainbow baby is often used to describe a baby born after the heartache of losing a child or baby.  It represents a beautiful miracle that takes place after the storm of saying good-bye to your baby.  But, a rainbow baby does not take away the fact that the storm happened in the first place.

This is a picture of rainbow over New Orleans, taken December of 2009.

4 years earlier, the city was struck by Hurricane Katrina:

And the city is still rebuilding.  People are still out of work, still living in FEMA trailers, still struggling to get back some peace in their lives.  They smile, the have joyous, happy moments, there are rainbows above them, but it does not take away the damage the storm did.  It does not take them back to their lives before the storm.  It does not change the heartache they have suffered or the tragedy they lived through.  But, it does bring a smile to their face, it does show beauty in a time of ugliness and despair.  It is afterall, a rainbow.

Samantha is our rainbow baby.  As of today, she has been alive longer than Matthew lived.  The past 10 weeks have flown by and it reminds me, painfully, what a short amount of time we had with Matthew.  It also reminds me of how many kisses, hugs and laughs we were able to share with him.  He is truly missed.  Every single moment of every single day.  He should be here with us.  He should be helping Kaitlyn make Samantha laugh, and there isn't anything I wouldn't have done, would do or given to have him here with us.

Happy 10 week birthday Samantha.  We miss you so much Matthew.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Samantha's 2 month appointment, food allergies and apnea monitors...

Little Miss Samantha had her 2 month check-up today.  She weighed in at 12 lbs, 9 ounces (80% and a gain of nearly 5 lbs since birth!!) and was 23.75 inches long (90% and a gain of 2 1/2 inches since birth) and a head circumference of 39.25 cm (50%).  She's a BIG baby!  So strong, alert and happy, a good baby overall.

Just as a comparison, Kaitlyn was 12 lbs and 24 inches at her 2 month appointment, it's crazy to me how close they are in size!

You know how when you complain or point out something your baby or pet does and then when you're reporting it to someone, they won't do it and you look crazy?  Well, Samantha didn't do that today.  Today she kinda performed on command.

First, she pooped.  Still runny, still with streaks in it, still gross.  Her doctor said it's not normal (which I figured) and it looks like a food allergy.  As he asked if she spits up a lot, she spit up her customary puddle and he said that the excessive spit up could also be an indicator of an allergy.  Obviously, she isn't malnourished because of it, but it could make for an even happier and healthier baby.

To target the food allergy, I have to go a week (or until her poops are solid and normal looking) without eating or drinking anything with: Dairy, Beef, Soy, Berries, Nuts or Chocolate in it.  How fun is that??  Once her poop is normal looking, I can start introducing one at a time and watch her to see if we can pin point the evil doer.

Another thing Samantha does is hold her breath.  Not too often, but pretty much whenever she sleeps and a few times a night.  She always then gasps or takes a deep sigh and goes back to normal breathing.  I know that this is not uncommon, many babies do that and as long as they stimulate themselves, it can almost be considered normal.  To show that I'm not crazy, she did it in the office today.  While he isn't overly considered, he knows our history and to try and encourage me to sleep more and for peace of mind to all involved, she is going to be using a sleep apnea monitor for a week to see what's going on.  We should get it in the next couple of days.

So, that's how her appointment went.  She gets to go back in a week and a half to go over her stools and apnea monitor.  And we're 3 diapers into the day without a leak :)

Cloth Diapers - Day 2

And what a much better day it was!

I started the first diaper of the day with a cloth diaper.  She woke up at 9 smiley and ready to go.  At 10:45, I was ready to head out and get some parts at Kragan's for Dusty and she had JUST fallen asleep.  I debated and debated.  Should I feed her and change her now?  Wake her up and risk her screaming the entire time I'm gone because Daddy is working on the car and Kaitlyn's lovely voice will only entertain her for so long?  I couldn't take her with me because all of her car seat components were in the washing machine (along with her bassinet mattress, bouncer covers and swing cover) and I couldn't put her in the swing.  What to do, what to do?

I opted to let her sleep.  She was so peaceful and I knew she needed the sleep and I would be back in no more than 45 minutes.

I got back in 29 minutes and she wasn't asleep.  She was awake.  And crying.  Loudly.  According to Dusty, Kaitlyn woke her up and while she was fine at first, in the final few minutes she was fed up with being offered only a pacifier.  Dusty had changed her, he said she was soaking wet and the diaper was heavy, BUT it did not leak.  Anywhere.  YAY!!!  But, I also hadn't shown him how to put on the cloth, she was fussing and he isn't a big diaper changer anyhow, so she had a disposable on.

She ate, played a little while and fell back asleep.  The diaper was still dry, so I figured, why waste it?  And maybe it'll catch her poo of the day?  That would be awesome!

At about 1:15 she was up again, hungry and ready to be changed.  This time, we went to cloth!  She ate, played a bit and took her third nap of the day.  At 3:20 I had to get her dressed and ready to go.  I changed her again, and not a leak.  We headed out for a birthday party for a friend and she did great.  At 5:15, I made sure to change her before she ate.  Again, not a leak.  After I fed her, I saw the face, I felt the rumble and she had pooped.  It really wasn't that bad to be honest.  It was about 6:00.

We left, I went and picked up Dusty to head to my sister's for Sunday dinner and to work on wedding stuff.  We got there around 7:00.  I changed her again around 7:30 before feeding her and still not a leak.  We got home a little after 10, changed her again and no leaks!

I did put her in a disposable at bed time.  I want to be confident in no leaks before trying to get comfortable with that!

However, she did eat at 10:15 PM.  Look around and smile and play in her co-sleeper, giggling and talking up a storm before she went to sleep at 10:45.  Then, I had to wake her up at 6:00 to eat.  She went over 7 hours sleeping.  Then, after nursing she was back to sleep and is still asleep.  I have to get her up soon though to eat and be changed before we head over to the peds office for her 2 month check up.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Cloth Diapers - Day 1

And it was interesting.

Friday night, I "pre-stuffed" all the diapers.  I figured then it would be easy to just grab one and change her.  I had her changing station all set up to do cloth diapers (it was all ready to do disposable), by rearranging her drawers to make one for cloth and setting up the pail to put the wet/dirty diapers in.

Her first diaper of Saturday morning was a disposable.  She usually wakes up in a really good mood, but there is a very small window of time to get her changed and fed before she looses her patience, so this was not the time I wanted to figure out her sizing.  And really it was a blessing because she pooped and again it was super runny and mucus filled.  I am glad that wasn't our first diaper.

We got it on her.  Kaitlyn helped.  I wished I would have gotten the velcro closure diapers.  She is in an inbetween size on the snaps.  With her chubby thighs, it can't get tighter there, but the tummy isn't as tight as I wanted.  But she sure was cute!

At about 2 hours and 15 minutes, I went to change her and she leaked out the top.  Not a lot or anymore than she did the night before in a Huggies, but enough to be irritating.  I changed her, loaded up my diaper bag with some cloth diapers and off we went.

This time, I was at the fabric store with my sisters and mom (look for some fabulous designs this week!) and she needed to be changed.  It was 2 hours and 45 minutes since the last change.  She leaked.  Aunt Samantha and Grandma decided they did not like the cloth diapers. 

When we got home, she was changed again, no leaks this time (just about 2 hours after the last changing), and again an hour and a half later (she was about to go down for her nap) without a leak.  After her very short nap, she was very fussy.  I was having a hard time figuring out what it was.  She had been fed, wouldn't sleep and so in a moment of trying anything to figure it out, I put her in a huggie to see if maybe she wasn't liking the cloth diapers.  She still cried, but I figured she was probably overly tired, I mean she had maybe slept a grand total of an hour and a half through the day and was just fighting off sleep.  And she was a little feverish (99.5) so who knows why she was so upset, she just was.

So our first day was ok.  She had 2 leaks, 3 that didn't, and they are cute.  I know that I am going to need to add some velcro styles to my stash and I am going to need more inserts.  I'm thinking about making them, I've looked up how and it's super easy, and the average cost to make them is about 50 cents, so I'm going to give it a try.

And that was our first day of cloth.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Poop, Sleep and Fears

My absolute FAVORITE food group in the world is dairy.  How can milk and cheese be considered anything OTHER than absolutely amazing.  I mean, it's silky, it's rich, it's creamy, it helps make chocolate, you can have it hot, cold, warm and makes anything it is added to better just for having it in there.

One of my favorite activities is sleep.  I am a go, go, go person.  Even if we have no where to be, I cannot sit still, I have to be folding laundry, wiping stuff down, creating, talking, cleaning, whatever, I just have to be doing it.  Which, takes a lot of energy.  Luckily, sleep helps replenish that energy.  And caffeine, which I did work really hard to be off of, and I hate drinking it, but I know that it helps decrease the risk of SIDS, and therefore, I enjoy my daily Dr. Pepper.

Last night, I changed another explosive diaper.  They've all been a little runny and brownish lately.  This one was more brownish, more watery and had some brown, mucus streaks in it.  It wasn't pretty.  And me being the completely psychotic, over protective mom I have been lately was thisclose to going to the ER with it.  Luckily, I married a very rational man who told me it was just mucus, she did not have a fever, she was smiling, she was doing just fine.

Well, if I can't go and have a doctor tell me right that second that everything is perfectly normal, Dr. Google can help ease my mind.  Word to the wise, do not google image search infant diaper with runny poop and mucus streaks, it is not a pretty sight.  But, you can learn a lot.  Do you know what the number one cause for mucus in the poop is?  Allergies.  Do you know what the number one allergy in infants is?  Dairy.  Do you know who drank a ton of milk the past couple days after not having much in a few weeks?  This mommy.

So, it looks like I'm going to try and eliminate dairy from my diet to see if that helps the princess.  I sure do love my milk, but she is more than worth it.

And, she lets me sleep.  It's me that doesn't allow it.

Last night, Samantha slept for 7 hours straight.  6 the two nights before and up to 5 for a week before that.  Which means that every 5 minutes, as she is in her sound sleep, I am checking her breathing.  Making sure it sounds normal, making sure she isn't warm or coughing, making sure nothing is near her face obstructing her air.  It has been so much worse this week.  I can feel the anxiety creeping up and getting worse.  I know it's there.

9 weeks and 3 days.  That is how old Samantha is.  Matthew was 10 weeks old, to the day, when he took his last breath before dawn.  If that horrific night wouldn't have turned out that way, he would have went to the doctor for his 2 month appointment and vaccines.  Samantha goes on Monday.  9 weeks and 6 days.  I am so glad they didn't schedule it for Tuesday.  I think I would have easily lost it.

I know I am an emotional mess watching her about to pass her big brother in lifespan.  I know it's why I chose to withdraw.  I know it's why I have been much more particular about who I spend my time with and who I talk to.  I am not a negative person.  I am a big believer that if your unhappy with your life you need to take steps to fix it.  That's it.  And I know that right now I am not only sensitive but impatient as well.  I just cannot handle it.  I cannot handle griping, complaining and whining about things within someone's control when I know how much worse life can be.

In 4 days, she will be 10 weeks old.  In 5 days, she will be alive longer than Matthew was.  70 days is such a short length of time...

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Baby Legs

I first learned about baby legs when we received a pair as a gift for Samantha.  Once I learned what they were, I was in LOVE.  I wanted at least 20 pairs, I loved that they grow with you, I love how cozy they look, I love how easy diaper changes are with them, I love how warm they are, I love that her and Kaitlyn can share them, I just LOVE them.  What I don't love is that they can be upwards of $10 a pair.  And when you want one for every onsie, t-shirt and cloth diaper that can get to be a lot.  Before even searching them out, I knew I wanted a whole drawer dedicated to baby legs.

I just won a lot of 10 on ebay and am anxiously awaiting their arrival.  I had heard they were fairly easy to make, but I've been lazy for the past year about actually getting out my sewing machine.  This morning, I did and I am so glad!

In less than 10 minutes, with a 2 month old sitting next to me in her chair, I made 3 pairs.  They cost about $1.25 a pair.  How in the world can I beat that?  Plus, I love that because they are so inexpensive I can make coordinating ones so we can mix and match them!  Now, I'm going to work on matching hair accessories.  And of course get started on making some more!

So, here is my first attempt at Baby Legs:

My model, and inspiration to be crafty lately was ready for a nap, so I haven't been able to put them on her yet!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Did the feminist movement do this to us?

Did it pit us moms against eachother?  Did it make it take away our freedom to chose what is best for us?  Did it turn our society into one that cares more about material objects than about quality of life?  Did it take away our right to be a full-time  mommy?

I am grateful to the feminist movement.  I always find it sad that in our world, you have to fight so hard for equality, I mean how is any one person worth more than another just based on their DNA.  But, that's another topic for another day...

I sometimes think and wonder about this, at what point did our society become so "thing" driven?

It is as though because women were given this ability to work and make the same income as men, they all felt the need to rush out and do it.  Many one income houses became two income houses, which meant more expendable income, which eventually led to bigger houses, newer cars and more stuff to fill both.

And soon, living like the Jefferson's became the norm.  We became a society hell bent on each family having the newest car, the biggest house, taking the best vacations and having the nicest things.  And when that became the norm, the choice to work women fought so hard for was no longer a choice.  It was an expectation.

Our society made this shift where it was expected that women would wait until later in life to have children, then when they had children, their career was such a big part of their life that they would be expected to return back as soon as possible while their children were enrolled in the best possible daycare.  The choice to cut back, to spend less, to stay at home with your child was taken away by society.  Doing so meant you got the raised eyebrow, whispered about; "why doesn't she just go to work", "can you believe she just sits at home all day with bon bons while HE has to go out and work", "did you hear how so and so is driving a 5 year old car because his wife is too lazy to get a job."

I'm sad to say that our society has become one where everyone seems to have forgotten how important and how hard it is to raise a child.

I completely understand that there are many women who love to work, whose children absolutely thrive in day care, who love the freedom of that second income and who sincerely love their careers and what it brings to their lives.  I have a lot of respect for you, I am really glad that the feminist movement gave you that choice, gave you that option and gave you that happiness.

What frustrates me is that the feminist movement took away the choice to be a stay at home mom.  This is what I love to do.  I thrive on it.  I love playdates, spending the day lounging together and all the happiness that it brings me.  And I am perfectly happy with not having new stuff.  I will gladly trade off having a new car, a bigger house that we own, more lavish vacations and nicer things if it means I get to spend every single minute of the day with my kids.

At the end of the day, we are all moms.  We are all fighting to do what is right for our families and our kids.  We are all trying to raise healthy and happy members of society and we are all making sacrifices in one way or another.  I hope that soon we reach a place in society where we are not measured for what we have or do not have, but for who we are and what we do.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

What is a hippie?

I have heard this term sooo much in the last couple of months.  From so many different sources, in regards to so many different scenarios, for reasons that truly do not make sense to me.  So, I thought, maybe I'm missing something, maybe I need to re-explore what a hippie actually is.  And this is in no way in regards to when it is said in a joking, playful manner ;)

The internet defines a hippie as: someone who rejects the established culture; advocates extreme liberalism in politics and lifestyle.

Urban Dictionary defines a hippie as: A Hippie is a person who was raised under the ideological system that came out of the tumultuous 1960's in North America and western Europe. They are either of the flower-child/baby boomer generation or that generations' subsequent offspring. They possess a core belief set revolving around the values of peace and love as being essential in an increasingly globalized society, and they are oftentimes associated with non-violent anti-governmental groups. There is a stigma of drug abuse attached to the hippies that is prevalent to this day, specifically the use and abuse of marijuana and hallucinagens. Many rock movements,poets, artists, and writers from the 1960's to today have associated with this movement, most prominently The Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, and Phish. There are others too numerous to name. The movement, then and now, is considered a sub-culture by sociologists that associates itself with the left in all its political opinions. The conservative right often berates and abuses the opinions of people who associate themselves with the hippie movement and/or lifestyle, as the consider it dangerous and degenerative to a society to favor liberalism to such an extent.

And then, I laughed!

For starters, I'm pretty darn conservative, both socially and economically.  I proudly voted George W. Bush into his second term.  I prayed that Obama would not be elected into office.  I believe in welfare reform, border control, the right to bear arms smaller government, fewer taxes, supported the war and believe that gays can marry.  

Ok, so the last one isn't exactly a conservative thought, but I really don't see how the government should have any part of what goes on in the private homes of US citizens.

I think what it comes down to is, I'm fiscally conservative.  Well, let's just put it out there, I'm cheap.  I strongly believe in the importance of being a stay at home mom, so we are a one income family.  For that to work and for us to still have the luxuries that we do, I have to budget and be smart with our money.

Here are some things that make me a "hippie":

1. Cloth Diapers.  Ok, these are not your mama's cloth diapers.  Our cloth diapers should be here Friday and are so stinkin' cute I cannot hardly wait to see them, wash them and put them on our princess.  For under $200 I will have a huge stash of diapers and never have to buy disposables again.  Considering that most kids are in diapers until they are about 2 1/2, and diapers are costing us about $40 a month, and are leaking like crazy regardless of the brand, we are talking about $1080 for diapers until Samantha is hopefully potty trained.  So, we will be saving $880.  Um, that's a good chunk of change to literally be throwing away covered in poo.

2. Breastfeeding.  Yes, I understand that some people find nursing gross, but seriously, that is their problem not mine.  There is a reason why we were created to make milk after the birth of our babies.  There is a reason why it cannot be recreated in a lab.  There is a reason why it is called liquid gold.  I get that not everyone can breastfeed, and I respect that.  I get that not everyone wants to put forth the effort, but seriously, aside from not costing you anything, it has so many benefits that have been proven time and time again in research study after research study. Not to mention that breastfeeding can save you $1000-$2300 a year!

3. Co-Sleeping.  Samantha may not sleep in a bed with us, but she sleeps in her co-sleeper attached to the bed just an arms length away.  I wish I was comfortable with the idea of her snuggling up next to me in bed, but because of our experiences I'm not.  While this does not save me money, it does save my sanity, and gets me more sleep since I just have to roll over, grab her, feed her, change her and stick her back to bed.

4. Recycling.  I could see where this could possibly make me a tree hugging hippie.  However, we recycle for money.  In California, we are forced to pay upfront a "find" for not recycling called CRV.  If the government is going to require me to pay this upfront cost, I am going to require the government to take my cans and bottles back and give me money instead.  I would say we easily get back $300 a year from recycling our cans and bottles instead of throwing them away.

5. Filtered Water.  I am a water bottle queen.  I LOVE water bottles.  I easily go through a case a week.  At about $5 a week, that adds up quick.  Instead of spending the $240 a year on water bottles, I now take my $9 pitcher and fill it up and pour it into a glass or my $3 reusable bottle.  Which means I'm not wasting $228 a year.

6. Delayed Vaccination Schedule.  I vaccinate my child.  Even if vaccines did cause autism, I would rather my child be autistic than to suffer the effects of polio or die from whooping cough.  I do not believe that vaccines cause SIDS.  We lost Matthew to SIDS and he was never vaccinated.  However, I have sat with Kaitlyn who has had adverse reactions to vaccines and see no reason to pump my baby filled with so many medications at one time her body develops a fever and headache in an effort to process them all.  This does not cost us or save us anything.  But again, peace of mind and sanity are really great things to experience ;)

So, call me a hippie all you want.  Instead, what I see is a mommy who finds it a high priority to stay home to raise my kids and watch them grow and a mommy who doesn't want to put a bunch of random chemicals on my baby because I'm not willing to put forth some extra elbow grease and effort to try something else.  I save/will be saving our family, $2400 - 3700 a year and living cleaner.  I would never call myself a hippie, unless hippie equals = smart momma with more money in her pocket, less chemicals on her baby, fewer adverse reactions from unnecessary chemicals, and overall a happy, healthy household...  And since it in no way affects anyone outside of our household, move on and judge something else ;)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Happy 2 months Samantha!

If someone could please tell me where the last two months went, I would greatly appreciate it!

Samantha is already 2 months old!  I measured her this morning and she was at:

weight: 11 lbs 10 ounces - up 2 lbs 13 ounces since birth - 50 percentile

length: 22.75 inches - up 2.5 inches since birth - 50 percentile

Samantha LOVES to smile!  She does it all the time.  She thinks her daddy and big sister are hilarious.  Samantha is greeted every morning by Kaitlyn and just smiles and laughs and coos at her.  Kaitlyn swears she is cooing Hello just to her.  She loves playing super baby with daddy and her bib makes the best super hero cape ever.  She is just simply a happy baby.

Samantha is still in 0-3 month clothing, but her torso is getting so long that it's getting harder to snap her clothes.  I think she'll easily be in 3-6 month closing by the end of the month.  She is in size 1 shoes and has just moved up to size 2 diapers.  However, by the end of the month, her cloth diapers should be here and ready to be used!  Her eyes are big and brown, her hair is mostly still there and has lightened some with some gold and red in there.  Her lashes have gotten so long and she has developed some super cute fat rolls on her legs. 

Samantha is a good sleeper too.  Up until the last day or two she has loved being swaddled.  Now, she is starting to sleep just as good with her arms undone.  She normally gives me one 3 1/2 hour stretch from 11 pm to 2:30 AM, then is up every 2 hours after that.  We have had a few nights where she went 5 hours and then 4 hours.  She wakes up to eat, is done in 8-10 minutes and back to sleep instantly.  She is still in the co-sleeper, still 100% breast-fed (we're going to hold off on solids until 5-6 months), and really only cried when she is hungry or has a dirty diaper. 

We are truly blessed.

The Truth About SIDS

What is SIDS?

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden death of an infant under 1 year of age which remains unexplained after a thorough case investigation, including performance of a complete autopsy, examination of the death scene, and review of the clinical history (Willinger et al., 1991).

Facts about SIDS:

What SIDS is:

  • The major cause of death in infants from 1 month to 1 year of age, with most deaths occurring between 2 and 4 months

  • Sudden and silent - the infant was seemingly healthy

  • Currently, unpredictable and unpreventable

  • Determined only after an autopsy, an examination of the death scene, and a review of the clinical history

  • Designated as a diagnosis of exclusion

  • A recognized medical disorder listed in the International Classification of Diseases, ( 9th Revision)

  • An infant death that leaves unanswered questions, causing intense grief for parents and families.

  • What SIDS is not:

  • Caused by vomiting and choking, or minor illnesses such as colds or infections

  • Caused by immunizations

  • Contagious

  • Child abuse

  • The cause of every unexpected infant death * SIDS is not caused by a lack of love.
    * SIDS is not caused by suffocation, vomiting or choking.
    * SIDS is not caused by baby shots.
    * SIDS is not caused by child abuse.
    * Preventable
    * SIDS victims cannot be revived, if they are revived, it is not SIDS, it is an ALTE

  • While SIDS is not preventable, there are things families can do to reduce their risks:

    •  Place infants to sleep on their backs, even though they may sleep more soundly on their stomachs.  Infants who sleep on their stomachs and sides have a much higher rate of SIDS than infants who sleep on their backs.  This includes nap time, and when you are “right there,” SIDS happens in an instant and in cases of SIDS, babies cannot be revived.
    • Place infants to sleep in a baby bed with a firm mattress.  There should be nothing in the bed but the baby - no covers, no pillows, no bumper pads, no positioning devices and no toys.  Soft mattresses and heavy covering are associated with the risk for SIDS.
    • Keep your baby’s crib in the parents’ room until the infant is at least 6 months of age.  Studies clearly show that infants are safest when their beds are close to their mothers.
    • Do not place your baby to sleep in an adult bed.  Typical adult beds are not safe for babies.  Do not fall asleep with your baby on a couch or in a chair.
    • Do not over-clothe the infant while s/he sleeps.  Just use enough clothes to keep the baby warm without having to use cover.  Keep the room at a temperature that is comfortable for you.  Overheating an infant may increase the risk for SIDS.
    • Avoid exposing the infant to tobacco smoke, including 2nd and 3rd hand smoke.  Don’t have your infant in the same house or car with someone who is smoking.  The greater the exposure to tobacco smoke, including second and third hand, the greater the risk of SIDS.
    •  Breast-feed babies whenever possible.  Breast milk decreases the occurrence of respiratory and gastrointestinal infections.  Studies show that breast-fed babies have a lower SIDS rate than formula-fed babies do.
    • Avoid exposing the infant to people with respiratory infections.  Avoid crowds.  Carefully clean anything that comes in contact with the baby.  Have people wash their hands before holding or playing with your baby.  SIDS often occurs in association with relatively minor respiratory (mild cold) and gastrointestinal infections (vomiting and diarrhea).
    • Offer your baby a pacifier.  Some studies have shown a lower rate of SIDS among babies who use pacifiers.
    • If your baby has periods of not breathing, going limp or turning blue, tell your pediatrician at once.
    •  If your baby stops breathing or gags excessively after spitting up, discuss this with your pediatrician immediately.

    As Samantha enters the age where most SIDS cases occur, we will be extra diligent in preventing this awful tragedy in any way we can.  

    Friday, January 7, 2011

    I turned $17 and an hour of my time into...


    It started with my obsession with Etsy, my desire not to spend a fortune on things that can only be worn and enjoyed for a very short period of time and this stuff from my local walmart:

    Some material hasn't even been used it, I still have almost all of the paint, enough elastic to do at least 10 more headbands, enough paint (I didn't want to use puffy paint, but it was the only fabric paint they had, so I made due) to do 2-4 more onesies, a whole fabric piece that got moved to the scrap bin, and enough fabric scraps left to make at least another 20-25 fabric flowers of either design.  Plus, I'm only 1/2 way done with the third onesie set.  But, the embroidery floss I had was too thick, so I need more.  If you break it down, each set cost me about $3.  Not too shabby!

     Plus, the flowers on the shirts, I put on pins so I can put them on anything when she outgrows the onesies.  And, I hand stitched the elastic on the headbands because I hate glue on the head, made a pocked on the back of the headband flowers, so I can change out the elastic when she outgrows it OR put it on a barrette!

    Tuesday, January 4, 2011

    Our first day

    Today was the first day where we went back to a "normal" schedule since Samantha's been born.  Considering that she's 8 weeks old today, that's pretty good!

    Kaitlyn went back to school today after winter vacation, Dusty had already went back to 8 hours a day last week, and we're in the swing of our new normal.  I have to say, I think it went pretty good.

    I managed to get Kaitlyn to school today.  Considering that she was still fighting sleep at 11 last night, I was happy.  It was a battle this morning and it didn't help that it seemed at 4 AM Samantha entered into a growth spurt stage, but we got through it.

    While Kaitlyn got ready for school, I did a load of laundry and the dishes.  I got her to school, came home with Samantha, fed her and put her in one of her favorite places: her swing.  I took a shower, I did the rest of the laundry, I made the beds, I made sure everything was picked up and put away.  I put some make-up on and got dressed so I could head to the gym at work.  I worked out for the first time since 2008.  I started slow, I'll work my way up thank you very much :P  I took care of making appointments and getting some stuff mailed out.  Kaitlyn goes to the eye doctor tomorrow afternoon and the dentist Monday for that tooth that is sticking out Sponge Bob style.

    I picked Kaitlyn up from school.  I swept all the floors, I swiffered all three bathrooms.  I dust mopped the hardwood floors and kitchen.  I steam mopped them after.  I cooked dinner.  I fixed the vacuum (at least it sucks up now, of course after 3 minutes the motor dies out, I cannot wait for my new one to get here Friday!!) and vacuumed the living room before getting too frustrated.  I fed everyone.  I got Samantha her bath and Kaitlyn in bed.  I ate.  I typed.  I fed Samantha every hour and a half.  I changed a lot of diapers.  I looked up how to make baby legs and started looking at a ton to buy.  I had lots of bonding and cuddling time with my baby girl.  I helped my big girl with her homework and talked about her day with my big girl.

    It was a good day.  I'm looking forward to it tomorrow.  And the next day.  And the day after....

    Monday, January 3, 2011

    A new year, new resolutions

    I love the new year.  Although, I do wish it happened in the Spring instead.  It makes more sense to me that the new year should start as everything is coming back to life, turning green, when it is all fresh, and crisp and sunny and you want to get out and see the world.  But, it doesn't.  It starts in winter.  When it's cold, the days are shorter, darker, when everything is gray with a lack of color or much movement.  I wonder if it was intended that way?  When the world around us is in it's state of darkness and gray, it forces us to look within ourselves for color, warmth and to full fill all of our dreams for ourselves.

    But, I digress.  My list of goals to make this a great year and to improve on our lives (yes, our lives because as the mother in this household, things I change in my life affect everyone around me) is fairly short, sweet and simple.

    1. Live for today and enjoy it!  Spend more time just "being" here.  Just sitting with my family, just enjoying the day.  Spend less time running from one place to the next, from one party to another without just sitting and soaking it in.  Which means, accepting fewer invitations, making fewer plans, and really immersing myself in the relationships that really matter.  Which leads to...

    2. Concentrating on who is a part of our lives and forgoing those who are not.  Dr. Laura talked about this on her show recently, we spend so much time, angry, hurt and offended by those who do not make an effort to be a part of our lives that we are being incredibly rude and offensive that those that do.  Those who are a part of our lives should matter so much that those who chose not to be aren't given a second thought. 

    3. To get healthier.  And by this I do not mean to lose weight.  Or to give up fast food.  Or candy.  Or chocolate.  Or having my laptop on my lap.  Or to go all organic.  But rather, to start enjoying those things in moderation, to exercise more and to really think about what I'm eating and doing when I do it. 

    And that's it.  Pretty simple, right?

    The internet is simply amazing

    I mean think about what it is today compared to what it was 10 years ago, even 5 years ago or even last year.  There is this never ending wealth of information available at our fingertips.  Never before have we had the ability to be so knowledgeable about EVERYTHING in the world.  We can email our doctors, pay all of our bills on the couch without so much as an ink pen, do all of our DMV crap in our pajamas, correspond with long lost friends without any of the awkwardness of running into each other at the grocery store on the day you decide you must stock up on toilet paper,  we can do anything, know anything, and research anything.  Granted, that isn't always a good thing and for some it's a terrible thing, but it is absolutely amazing.

    This past weekend we were told of a family we are close to having their lives changed in an instant.  While it isn't my place to tell their story here, I wanted to share with you how the internet played a roll in my actions.

    When Matthew passed away, there were many well intended people with big hearts who loved us, cared about us, and wanted the best for us say the wrong thing, without realizing it or meaning to, who ripped our heart out of our chests.  I know their intentions were pure, I know they were struggling for the right words, and I would never hold it against them.  But, that sting was still there.  It was like when you crack your windshield.  Sure, there is a big, gigantic crack in the middle that draws your attention, blocks your view and creates a huge hazard, but there are also those little cracks that splinter off, while they may not be causing the same damage as the huge center crack, they aren't helping either, they are still cracks.  I didn't want to be a crack.

    And thanks to the internet, I don't have to be a crack.  I can learn so much about a situation I have never been in or been close to.

    And that, is simply amazing.