Saturday, January 28, 2012

Bed Resting (& Shopping)

I write to you from Bed.  My big, comfy bed.  Yes, yes, I almost always write from my bed.  I gave up computing from my desk about the same time I switched to a laptop. ; )

But.  The reason I'm in bed this sunny (cold) Saturday is some bedrest. : (  I  had some horrible pain (ripping/stabbing about two inches below my belly button) strike me this week, and again Thursday night.  By Friday morning after some (bad) Google-time, I called my doctor's office.  They told me to come right in.  I waited around for Ches to get home from Mass (in Rogers), but it was taking soooo long, so I left.

They checked my abdominal muscles for hernia (no), cervix (closed), my fetal fibronectin (tells if you will go into labor in the next 7 days, negative), my blood (just trace bacteria they are culturing now), temperature (normal), urine (normal), and an ultrasound.  It was also "normal".  Carter is moving, good heart rate, he's up to 2 lbs. 4 oz, and his placenta does not seem to have pulled away from my uterus (the concern).  It's hard to determine for sure, but there is no pooling liquid (blood) behind it, so it's most likely fine.  When I told the ultrasound tech where the pain was, she checked, and there are his knees, all bunched up against my tummy, right below my belly button.  Umm..I'm telling you-the pain was nowhere near kicking/pushing pain-it felt like something was ripping.  So..

The doctor asked if I worked (paid job?  No.  Work really hard at home?  Yes.), and said then she couldn't tell me to quit.  She just said to go home and rest, and to come back Monday for a recheck.  Hopefully no more big pain (none yet), and lots of Downtime. (i.e. internet maternity/baby shopping, Kindle shopping/reading, visiting your blogs, Girl Scout cookie tallies, movie rentals, getting stuff ready to turn in for taxes..)  I know it's only been a day, but I think I could do it.  Even if it's lifted, I think I'll take it easy for the next few weeks.  All in the name of Healthy Baby. : ) have now found a Beaba baby food maker that I must have (plus its accoutrements and recipe books).  I made all Clay's baby food (purees), and some of Mary Claire's.  Poor Ethan got boxed rice cereal and jar food.  I feel bad, so this baby shall get homemade food. (and Clay is such an amazing eater now!)  I just have to have all the cutesy stuff (I know, I did it with no tools last time..but the Beaba blends, steams, purees, defrosts all in one little unit.)  Magical. ; )

And I found the cutest little paci thing last week, a Wubbanub, and had to order it.  It was smaller than I thought it'd be-about the size of a small beanie baby (remember those?):
Ok, and please reassure me it is not a girl paci.  Ches promised it didn't look girly.
The pacifiers are the ones given out in the hospital, made by Avent (my fave), and now, they have these adorable little creatures sewn onto them, to help baby hold on to them!  We picked the lamb, so it wouldn't interfere so much with his clothes. ; )  The giraffe was cute, but so busy visually!  All the pictures on are of the babies cuddling the animal, holding on to it.  I don't think we'll try it right away to avoid nipple confusion, but by a couple months, we'll try it out.  I do love a paci at church. ; )  The only weird thing about these Soothie you can see into baby's mouth when they are sucking since the nipple is hollow/uncovered.  Weird.  I also bought some orthodontic Avent pacis just in case he is not loving the lamb on his chest. ; )

I also found a baby bathtub and a swing that we'll need.  We can find the stretchy insert for Ethan's baby tub, but can't find the actual tub it fits into!  And..our swing (and our other baby gear for that matter!) had been loaned out so many times, it has really taken a beating.  Not to mention, that most of it is 11.5 years old.  (No, we won't discuss the fact that I'll have kids at Hunt Elementary for 17 years..we'll all be best friends!)  Anyway, the pack-n-play is still going strong, and our good baby furniture was a great investment.  And all those tiny onesies and baby Keds?  Still white and pretty perfect. ; )

Ok, obviously I have time on my side today..I'd better finish up all the linking (heehee, sorry!), and maybe finish one of my new books?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

What will rot your teeth the fastest?

Ethan has been totally into Valentine's Day this year.  He's already made all of his valentines for his Mother's Day Out class, two for friends, and four for kids he could remember from his preschool (I'm sure they are his best friends..they are boys!).  He even wrote all the names (To and From!), put the little sticker into the tabs, and stickered the edges to hold them together.  Totally impressive.  I had to help him with some letters, but I can remember making Valentines with Mary Claire her last preschool year..and she would get all frustrated and worn out after two.  It took us a couple weeks (which is why we started so early!)

Mary Claire is also finished.  She remembered her entire class list (in abc order, since they have numbers, and she knows everyone's numbers!).  She is number 15, and she remembered forward and backward from her.  She chose Secret Spy valentines this year, but since some said, "Secret Mall Spy" and "Cute Spy", she wouldn't give them to boys (for fear they might think she thinks they are cute!).  So, she raided my valentine tub and found previous years valentines cards for them (SpiderMan, dinosaurs, jungle animals, etc.) that didn't say anything close to "I like you" (in the I like you way).

And Clay?  He hasn't touched his yet.  And after prompted, has better things to do.  When the list comes home, hopefully he'll have some motivation.  We heard (through MC of course) that he likes a girl, but he absolutely denied it to me.  We don't have boy- or girlfriends in our house (till college!), so maybe that's his reason.  That or he's at that age and doesn't want to tell us.  Or could be both. ; )

We also have been making valentines for Mary Claire's girl scout troop for their yearly exchange.  Mary Claire got her American Girl magazine and found the cutest valentine instructions: Funny Fortunes!  They are fortune cookies made out of felt, and you can print the fortunes you like from the AG website, cut, and fold. (click here, then click on Funny Fortunes)  So adorable!
We had to fold up the fortunes, since they printed pretty big, and the fortune cookie felt circles are only about 3.5" around.  Warning: they are super silly, so you can always make your own with jokes or something. ; )

We have also started Clay's science fair project.  He is testing which drinks will rot your teeth the fastest.  Yum.  He has four molars (yes, the Tooth Fairy helped us out!), and they are hanging from fishing line into four drinks he chose: water, milk, lemonade, and Coke.  His theory is that the Coke will rot the tooth the fastest, followed by the lemonade (due to the lemon and acidity).  I did a very close experiment in grade school, and the tooth literally dissolved in about a week in Coke.  We'll see how his does.  I don't let him eat lemons (yes, he would e-a-t them if he could!), so maybe this will prove how fast they eat through the enamel!  (I wonder if Coke from the 1970's is as strong as Coke today...)

Sweet little baby molars..two Mary Claire has lost just in the past week!  (but..we didn't tell her that she donated her teeth to science.)
And what is MC doing with all that tooth fairy money?  She saving up!  She's decided she wants a Kindle (preferably a Fire, but that comes in at a nice $199!).  She now has a one of my little checkbook registers from the Bank of Mom, and is earning and saving.  She earned $25 for her grades, and is making money every day making lunches and cleaning.  She's up to $41.75 including tooth fairy deposits. ; )  The tooth fairy left her an encouraging note with deposit information for her.  We love when she saves for something meaningful rather than new Squinkies!

She still has Valentine's day, and Easter, and if she doesn't meet her goal..she wants us to help her out on her birthday. : )  And yes, I did tell her then she'll need money to buy ebooks!  ..I think it started right after Christmas when they had Electronics Day at school-and kids brought their new Kindle Fires (and iphones!).  (Can you imagine?)  Now she feels all sad she doesn't have one.  I think earning and saving are the best solution.

I just hope she doesn't pull any permanent teeth. ; ) 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Hellllooo! : )

Hey, ya'll!  It has been busy, so I've been neglecting my little spot on the internet. ; )

Everything is good-I'm still healthy, baby Carter is still healthy..and we're at 26.5 weeks now!  Almost third trimester..a few days to go.  I'm feeling bigger and a little more awkward, but still trying to finish up his baby room.  I'm almost done. : )  I hung some stuff on the walls, painted an end table to go by the rocker, bought a box of diapers (!), and got more new burp rags (cloth diapers) washed so I can monogram them. ; )

Last weekend I went to Branson with my friend, Angie, and we shopped for baby clothes.  She'd just had surgery about two weeks before, so we both took it easy.  We'd never gone that slow or finished that early!  It was wonderful to have t-i-m-e.  We chalked it up to us both not trying on clothes.  I guess buying for ourselves really takes up a lot of time.  Huh.  I got the kids some spring/summer clothes, and a little bit for next winter (the sales were amazing!  I got Clay and Ethan Tommy Hilfiger jeans for 8.49 each!), plus some baby clothes and jammies for Carter.

And...I found a diaper bag!  I'd been looking for one online (since that is the most comfortable way to shop lately!), and had narrowed it down to a Petunia Picklebottom (Afternoon in Amsterdam) bag I'd found on Pottery Barn Kid's website.  I was pretty decided (and in possession of another 15% off coupon!), until this weekend.  I found a bag with -get this!- NiNE pockets!  I absolutely love to be organized, and this bag was calling my name.  It even matches the stroller, car seat (and his room, if that counts!) so much better than the PB taupe/gold I was loving on.  So, I got it.  It's all blue/turquoise/navy/silvery bronze, and totally goes with my bronze purse & wallet I'm carrying for winter.  So, I can slip in my wallet and still be all matchy for spring. ; )  Oh, and it was on sale, of course.  Cheaper than 'ole Petunia!  Wanna see a picture?

While I was gone, Ches registered both boys for spring baseball.  I know we'll be a little busy, but I hate for Clay to miss a season, if that is the sport he's liking the most.  He really enjoyed playing catcher, and as they get older, they have to narrow it to a sport (well, that's my requirement!  We can't do it all.)  And Ethan?  Wants to be like his brother, and Ches wants to coach his team again.  I think they are done with playoffs by the first of June, so we'll still have our summer free.

We are trying to decide if we can plan a summer vacation or not.  I keep getting the sale flights from Allegiant (our favorite for Orlando!) and AirTran-and there are some mighty good deals right now!  (We like to fly to Orlando when they have tickets $39 each way for each person..that's the best!)  But..we have no idea about Carter's temperment, or if we can drive to Ocean City, or if we'll need to fly.  I hate to miss a great deal, but I think it may be a last minute decision this year.  Or some place really close?

Ok, I should get these kiddos to bed!  Mary Claire is having a friend over, and all the kids are still up.  They have been watching High School Musical 3-even the boys! and mama is about to declare Bedtime.  I'm tired!

Hope you have a great weekend (and find some great sales too? Even today I got two pair of jammy pants at Target for $4.48 for Mary Claire, woohoo!)! ; )

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

What will YOU personalize?

Ok, I told you about my Christmas break BFF, Food.  We had a great vacation together!

Now..I'm seriously crushing on this new toy Santa brought me.  It is a Silhouette Cameo machine.  A cross between a printer and a cutter.  You have software (totally free, try it out!), that you create things in, then send them out to the cutter to cut.  Kinda like a Cricut, but you can use all your own fonts (I have a million!), or you can buy designs on their website for 99 cents or under.  (instead of $50 for Cricut cartridges with only one font or four designs!)

You can cut cardstock (to make little boxes and gift card holders or scrapbook titles), fabric (to decoupage, make cards with, or sew around), regular paper or scrapbook paper (unlimited ideas!), or my personal favorite?  Vinyl!  You can get all colors of repositionable (knew spell check would catch that one!) vinyl for your walls or doors, to make a vinyl chalkboard for your pantry, etc.  You can also get the permanent outdoor vinyl to make signs for your windows, car, or even cups and bowls that can go through the dishwasher!  I haven't been brave enough to try the permanent..I have to practice before I can commit to permanent vinyl.  We're still dating, after all. ; )

So..want to see a picture to help visualize?  Here are some little mailboxes I got from Target for a dollar each (they have them before every Valentine's Day if you need one!):

And..I'm still s.l.o.w.l.y working on the baby's room.  I found new lamp shades for some lamps I already had, found a great mirror 50% off, and made a minky dot sheet to match the bedding I got online.  I'm also nearly finished with some birdhouses I am painting and decoupaging to hang on the 'branch'..that branch that will stand in for a mobile.  Totally unreachable by little hands..unless they try to climb.  Hmm..that would be bad.  Must add that to my list of things to worry about.
Here are some pix of the unfinished room:
I "updated" them by adding fancy new polka-dotted knobs.  Easy!

The lamp is going on an end table over by the chair...that's not in the room yet!  No, I won't let baby fall off the changing table. ; )  ..and I'm making a changing pad cover since I moved it to the dark changing table.  I am thinking pale turquoise and white plaid. ; )

The bedding!  And the sheet I made ; )

All the birdhouses lined up in a row..ready to be hung!

My first monogrammed thing for him-a real commitment to his name! ; )

How they ended up (and you can not force a birdhouse to turn the way you like, FYI)

This is a wrought iron thing I found in Missouri-kind of a memo board.  The kids painted and made him a welcome sign!

And we moved Ethan's furniture down (but we are still waiting on his new PB furniture to show up!!  They tell us Friday now..)
I saw my doctor again last Thursday for an appointment and my glucose tolerance test.  I even took one of Mary Claire's little pokey things, 33 gauge needles, and alcohol pads to poke myself, since they use those razor blade cutters to slice your finger.  But they didn't even check my fasting blood sugar, just drew blood an hour after the nauseating drink.  I was slightly disappointed I didn't get to wield my own weapon. : (  I haven't heard back, but I'm sure it's fine unless they call.  He also said I've made it to ViABiLiTy, so that is a huge milestone for us. : )  He said if I can make it another 10 weeks, there is no difference in the long term outcome of the child.  I can do 10 more weeks. ; )

I'm also having another ultrasound at my next appointment to check on that placenta that was covering my cervix.  I'm praying it's moved up! It was covering the spot where they cut for a c-section, so it's a little dicey.  I really want him to be able to cut in the same spot, you know since I'll be wearing a bikini this summer.  HA!!  Not.

I had a really strong contraction (ok, a HUGE pain a couple inches above my belly button and a hard tummy all over) yesterday, so I came home and pushed water and rested.  I was up a lot yesterday running errands, but I usually don't start to contract till 27 weeks.  I will was scary.  I was grocery shopping with Ethan, and got a little panicky.  It kept hurting, but after rest, it was totally gone.  Little less movement last night (he's normally SO active from 4-5am!), but today seems totally normal.  So that slow stuff?  Yep, gonna keep going slow!  It is just too early.  Gotta get 10 more weeks in, minimum. ; )

Yes, I'll make you a sticky piece of vinyl to stick on something (on a picture frame? little tin pail? clipboard? door? your laptop? notebook? mirror?)!  I figure it's easier to mail the vinyl ready to stick than mail a mailbox or something to you!  I'm not a pro, so it'll be a little border and a simple word (like on the mailboxes), on vinyl transfer paper ready to stick on.  I only have black and silver vinyl so far.

So, here we go!  Limited to the first five people, unless I am squishy and feel that everyone deserves their name on something.  heehee ; )  Let me know what word/name you want, and black or silver.  Happy early Valentine's Day! or Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. day!

ps-You can send me your mailing address at if I don't already have it. ; )

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Pregnancy Tummy Rumblings

Over Christmas break (which a few of us are still enjoying..), I've discovered sweets again. : (  I was doing so well eating only healthy (read: high protein) food, but after baking cookies, gingerbread men, coconut cream pie, sweet potato casserole, cherry cheesecake dessert, dipping chocolate pretzels, Ches' ice cream birthday cake, Ethan's big birthday cookie.. and loving a daily McDonald's peppermint hot chocolate..I've oversweetened my baby's amniotic fluid just a tad.

I am reading a great book (on my new kindle!), called Do Chocolate Lovers Have Sweeter Babies?  ..and indeed they do!  So..I let myself go.  All in the name of a super-sweet baby.  Don't we all just *love* a sweet baby?

There are only a couple problems with this strategy, one being the massive number of pounds it adds to Mommy (and the rolling-around-whale effect at night), and there seems to be an impact on one big sister.  Well, on her blood sugar.  She sees mommy sweetening up baby, and wants to sweeten herself too.  She's been running a bit high, I upped all her basal rates, and we still saw high numbers.  One antibiotic later (can you say ear infection?), and she's beginning to do better.  Especially after all these desserts reach their expiration, and we boldly shove them down the garbage disposal or trash can..and coat them with dishwashing detergent.  (thanks, Miranda) ; )

So, now we have embarked on a new vocation: cooking from Martha Stewart's cookbook, but only the dinner food (no desserts!).  We began last night with the Southwestern Cobb Salad (and it was amazing!).  I'll snap a picture of the recipe, but here is the rundown.  We marinated cucumber in lime juice, cilantro, salt, and pepper.  Added cilantro, olive oil, salt/pepper to drained & rinsed black beans.  And had a mixture of chopped tomato, broiled yellow pepper (my broiling power is back!), and red onion, with cumin, salt/pepper, and all these sat while I made half a pound of thick-cut bacon, and cooked the turkey (but it calls for chicken).  You layer all these amazing flavors together over romaine, and it is total Salad Explosion-Yum!
Hers is prettier, I had to make each plate separately since the kids all have their preferences. ; )
Here is the recipe (just call me lazy, but I don't have time to type all this up!):

And tonight, I'm making the Gratineed Macaroni and Cheese with Tomatoes.  I've just broken up bread crumbs, and grated 4 cups of sharp white cheddar (and added mozzarella since the cheddar was really strong!).  I can bet that this one won't help me in the poundage department, but it is high in protein. ; )  And I'm using wheat elbow noodles, and I think it's a pound of fresh tomatoes! : ) So, we'll call it healthy-er.

Are we programmed only to think about our tummies during pregnancy?

Here's the latest look at my huge one.  On New Year's with my baby-and he does love his baby brother. ; )
I know!  It's totally the horizontal stripes.  (Please disregard the mess in the background.)