Monday, February 28, 2011

Soooooooo Sleepy

The anesthesia from surgery made me so sleepy. The husband and I got home just before noon today. I hugged the kids and went upstairs to take a nap. I forced myself to come down and eat something and sit with the family because I've been sleeping so much I'm kinda worried I'll be wide awake at 4am.

Lets hope the pain management drugs will help with that one.

They gave me a girdle like the ones they give you after a c-section to hold your insides in. Score! Free girdle!!

Surgery Day

I painted my toenails for my surgery because it will be nice to have something pretty to look at as I anticipate spending quite a bit of time in bed. This is my lovely umbilical hernia.

It's squishy.

Hopefully, I'll be doing blogging from bed because I'm not one for social isolation.
Surgery is scheduled for 9:00am today so assuming I don't get bumped back and nothing goes horribly awry I should be home in my bed recovering by noon-ish.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Wall Flowers

They're not just a euphemism for shy people anymore!

With the new paint in our master bedroom and new floors the walls needed something to spice them up. Our ceiling slopes with the roof peak so I wanted some wall art that would highlight that. I really wanted the art to be three dimensional and repeating, so my usual go-to of buying a canvas and whipping something up was a no-go.Then I found myself watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Normally I find that show to be really tiresome... it's just weird that the designers are doing more acting than they are designing. Anyhow, they made a flower out of scraps of fabric and I thought to myself "I could totally do that."

And here we are.First I went to the fabric store and hunted down fabrics that appealed to me. I wanted the pattern to look good even if I was using a tiny little piece of fabric; the colors needed to coordinate with my 'neutrals' bedroom, and I felt like I needed at least 7 different fabrics so the pattern was sufficiently random. (In total, I spent $8 on this project!)Then I went to our gigantic pile of empty flooring boxes and pilfered some cardboard. Used one of my beloved Sharpie markers (my love runs deep) and sketched out the flower. I cut the cardboard with heavy duty kitchen scissors but a box cutter or Exacto would work too.Then it was time to cut the fabric. After quite a bit of trial and error I found that a triangle piece of fabric worked best. This piece is about 4inches wide at the hypotenuse. I did use a variety of sizes and none of them are cut measured or cut to perfection.Here is how I folded the pieces. (It kinda reminds me of a diaper!)This is what a piece looks folded and glued at the pleat.Here are a few in place. I put a dab of hot glue on the back of the 'petal' shape and glued it directly to the cardboard. The task itself was repetitive so once I got the hang of it I was set!

Here is a finished flower. I worked from the outside towards the center and used curled ribbon for the center, but it would also look cute with a button placed there.

I used cotton and canvas fabrics because that was the look I was going for but you could mix it up and add silk/sateen or lace or felt. I'm thinking it wouldn't look right with fleece, but that's just my opinion!

I glued a loop of ribbon to the back to make hanging them a breeze. They are so light-weight that I was able to use push pins to hang them. Which means I could do it during nap time- Score!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Being a Mommy is so Glamorous

I have an umbilical hernia.

Apparently after Henry was born and everything was supposed to grow back together... it didn't. I just thought my belly button was just going to be an outtie now- not so, my friends.

I have a glamorous bulge of insides on the outside. I went last Thursday and got the diagnosis, then this Tuesday I went for my surgical consult. Next Monday I'll be chillin' in an OR getting myself fully reassembled. I'm really excited for how quickly everything is happening because my commitments to my family and to yoga are certainly being affected. After a week recovery I should be 'good as new'. That makes me happy because I really want to get back to life.

Thinking back to Jack's c-section I'm a little worried about recovery being more challenging than I expect. I'm also wondering if being back in an OR will bring back any of the twitchy trauma type stuff I felt right after Jack was born. But those concerns are really in the back of my mind compared with my desire to be well for myself for my family and for my yoga practice.

I will totally be posting a 'before' pic the morning of the surgery. ::shudder:: Here's hoping the after is dead sexy! HAH!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Before & After

Why replace the floors at all?We had our reasons....All the cuts to the boards were made in the house, no matter how diligent my mom may have been with the shop vac there was a dusting on all three floors that had to be cleaned every night before bed. Hard wood looks so much better against that wood railing... and it's much better for allergies too!
Before: (This was the earliest version of Jack's big boy room, circa Oct. 2009)
After: Before: (vintage nursery- this pic was taken pre-Jack)
Before: (This is from our real estate listing- hence the fancy color balancing and wide angle camera. Photo credit: Husband) After: (This was taken by me, nothing fancy tonight, before we have our new rug and before the new wall art goes up... more on that soon!)
It's finished, and it's fabulous!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

While the floors were laid...

Cats kissed.
A toddler played pretend.

The baby caught some rays.
We made sure our nickles were still attached.
and we played in the BALL PIT!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

DIY Vlog

I've been wanting to try a Video Blog so here is my Vlog debut. A day in the life of a DIY home renovation. I have play by play photos but what people really want to know is what it is like to live in it when it's all happening.

The Husband's parents and my parents were crucial to making this while thing happen. His parents helped with demo and my parents helped with construction. I feel like I didn't help much but I was benched from the project last week... but more on that later. Uncle Tom's girlfriend Alba and her parents provided a pleasant respite between demo and construction. Before and after photos and other stuff to come. So much to tell....

Friday, February 18, 2011

Peace Out

It's Friday!We're tearing out the carpet in the bedrooms and on the stairs this weekend and putting down hardwood (bamboo). So I doubt I'll be posting again until things wind down.

I love a good DIY... especially when it's done!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Go green! Save money! Do nothing?

Now, I'm pretty green, as per the organic eating, cloth diapering, recycling, etc. But my husband is crazy green and crazy cheap. He prefers that everything not actively in use should be turned off and unplugged. TV, Computer, even the alarm clock... okay not really the alarm clock but everything else is true in his ideal world.

He even has one of these things which tells you how much power every single thing you own draws. I'm not saying our marriage was on the rocks because of this... but it was close... He has plugged everything we own into it. Reporting to me (each and every time) how much power something draws and how much money to the nearest cent it costs us.

I may be exaggerating a little. But only a little.

Ever the man of compromise he came up with a solution- This power strip is smart, and kinky. It's an S&M power strip. Get your mind out of the gutter!

Your TV is plugged into the 'master' and when the TV is on your Wii, XBox, DVD player, AV system is powered too. When your TV is off NO POWER is drawn to any of the 'slave' systems. Those aux. systems always draw some amount of power if they're plugged in and they're cosing you money- dollars per month or more. But they don't need it because they aren't in use. The power strip senses the TV turn on (when you use your remote from the comfort of your couch) and then starts up everything else instantaneously (while you remain comfortably on your couch). Are you sensing a theme here?

There are 2 slots for 'always on' items like DVR and Internet.

The thing costs less than $25 and we'll earn that back before the first year of using the thing. That's an awesome rate of return!! Also? My husband gets to geek out over the tech, and I get to say things like "Yes, dear."

I'm just telling you about this because it's cool, not because I'm getting a kickback or anything like that. Also, I like to save the planet because it gives me warm fuzzy feelings. If you can swing the $25- you should totally get one!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Top 10 things I wear

This is a great Top 10 from Kaite over at Sluiter Nation. I think what we wear can say a lot about us, and they can be kinda funny. These are listed in no particular order, because this was just how I was able to find them, hunting back through old photos.

10. Mismatched socks. These socks are really popular at my yoga studio. So they represent being funky and also my love of yoga.
9. Paint. I get it on myself during every single project.
8. A scarf. I have many, and I love them all equally.

7. A nursing bra. Nursing bras (at least the ones I have) are not particularly glamorous but they're quite functional.

6. Flip flops. I realize these aren't my feet, but they are my flip flops. (Really the epitome of a good fashion day for me is flip flops and a scarf.)

5. A dress. It doesn't happen often but when I do get to wear a dress it changes how I feel about myself. It doesn't hurt that every time I put on a dress Jack says to me "Mommy, you're so beautiful!"

4. A swimsuit. Summer is my fave time of year, and the beach (or poolside) is my favorite place to be on a hot summer day. In the winter we make do with the occasional trip to an indoor pool.

3. A headband. Sometimes I'm lazy about my hair and I hit the easy button.

2. A knit hat. I have a knit hat addiction. I'm willing to admit it. It's cool. Also, I love me some mittens.

1. My babies. There is something so easy and so sweet about baby-wearing. I lurve it.


Well used, much loved.
Top three pop-culture nerdy things I love: Harry Potter, Firefly and trends in Green Living.

Monday, February 14, 2011

I'm not one to leave a debbie-downer post flapping in the breeze

So here's some cuteness to brighten your sunny, warm, flip-flop wearin' Valentines Day. The boys spent part of the morning geeking out to Daddy's computer. See-through sides and flashing lights = happy boys.

This morning Jack told me I was his Valentine. He's such a charmer! This coming weekend we're going to be putting hardwood floors upstairs (we already put them in on the main level). To tie it together we're taking the carpet off the stairs and then sanding and staining the wood to match.

Hopefully Jack doesn't learn that riding a mattress down hardwood stairs is a great substitute for sledding in the summer. Ah, my youth...

It was a moment

I was laying in the hospital bed after the c-section that delivered my older son. From the time I was lucid enough to notice the world around me it appeared the world had changed. The nurses seemed to be talking to themselves, not to me. I thought my husband was looking at me like I could at any moment evaporate into nothing. I expected to perceive the world differently (now that I was a mommy) I figured it would be all hugs and puppies; this was not the 'different' that I had expected. I was not prepared for the tricks my mind would play on me.

I saw shadows move across the wall and scoot across the ceiling. I saw the baby get out of the bassinet and crawl across the floor. I heard people talking to me but there was no one there. I heard the baby crying, but he was fast asleep. This went on for days, maybe even the first few weeks.

It hurt so much even to adjust my position in bed. I usually needed help. When I say I went to use the bathroom as a means of escape I want you to understand the desperation. I cried in my windowless, sterile, gray hospital bathroom. I cried for my c-section. I mourned my former care-free life. I cried because there was no window for me to climb out of so I could run away. I just wanted so desperately to escape. Like fight or flight, I didn't have any fight in me I just wanted to take flight. To think I could have hoisted myself out a window is laughable, but I was convinced that had the opportunity presented itself I would have tried.

I was dozing in my hospital bed. My mother and my husband were taking turns with sweet Jack so I could sleep. My mother said to my husband "You should watch out for postpartum depression." I wanted to yell "SHUT UP!! I'M FINE!!" Part of me had enough sense to realize she was probably (definitely) right.

Why tell this story? Why bring it up?

Because I should have gotten help. I figured I was tired, and the hospital was just messing with me. I decided I'd be better at home, and I was right- home was better. But I wasn't suddenly whistling Dixie.

I should have taken these feelings more seriously. I figured postpartum depression was wanting to hurt the baby, or feeling detached from the baby or wanting to hurt myself. I felt angry, angry about the c-section. But that wasn't the whole story and I was totally unwilling to admit it. I don't know what my experience was because I never got help. It might have been PPA, PPD or PPP. What it was doesn't really matter though, it was horrible and totally unnecessary.

I tell this story as a means of releasing it, because I don't feel this way not even a little bit. It was a moment in time. I could have done more and learned more but my moment is over I've grown away from that sad, scared new mommy. Someone else might be crying in a bathroom somewhere and they shouldn't have to.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Sing it, Pat Benatar

Love is most certainly a battlefield.

I have, on more than one occasion, referred parenting as 'in the trenches'. Parenting is not easy. I mean, think about it:

We are supposed to protect our child from harm while teaching them to be adventurous and try new things. We're not supposed to spank them (obviously) but some think we shouldn't ever yell at them either but we're supposed to teach them about safety- like "My little angel-face, please don't reach for that hot pan on the stove." Unlikely. We're going to say "NO!" and then explain, bla bla hot bla bla not safe. We're supposed to teach them not to throw tantrums or whine when they don't get what they want but you're also (especially with boys) supposed to teach them to embrace the full range of their emotions.
We love them and shower them with affection and praise whenever we can, but we don't want to give in to their every request and appease them all the time. We should run to them when they get hurt but also teach them to pick themselves up and dust themselves off.
Teaching the tiny humans to become big humans is an incredibly hard job. It's love. It's a battlefield.

I have not been fabulous at this really difficult job. I take that back. I'm a great mother and I'm proud of how I'm raising my kids, but it doesn't mean I don't find it all to be incredibly trying.

In yoga we understand that the divine, the universal, God is in everything. The flower that is just starting to bloom, when your toddler says "I love you, you're my best friend." when a baby smiles at you for the first time. The divine is also in the 3am crying fit, the tantrum, the eye-roll. I was in yoga class last night when I realized this. Last night's long drawn out wake up wasn't exactly fun but by remembering that there is something divine in this moment helped it not become a source of great frustration.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I might start to love doing laundry!

This was how I was doing laundry. Dark room, dingy carpet, no storage, no fun! I was paranoid about dropping anything on the rug when i mived it from the washer to the dryer. It just felt unsanitary. (Yes, I'm a clean freak so my definition of unsanitary is.... picky.) But ugh! What domestic goddess wants to work in these conditions?!

After we put in the storage shelves I was inspired to re-vamp the whole area. Now the storage shelves are awesome because the soaps are right there to scoop in to the washer but it also leaves some space for pantry items (which my husband interprets as space for beer) but I see as a place to put homemade preserves. Which makes me psyched for picking season! The back edge of the shelves has a 3inch board nailed to it so if I ever push something towards the back of the shelf it would be safe from falling. Crucial!

The peel and stick tiles were really easy to lay but I found it helpful to use free weights and gallons of paint to hold the tile down while the adhesive cured. The area behind the shelves is covered with a sheet (because there are pipes and wires back there walling it in is totally impractical) but having something to make it look a little prettier and a little less 'basement' was key.

I'm not gonna lie, doing laundry yesterday was almost fun.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Doctor

When you're a brand new parent, going to the doctor is a much-welcome performance review. You're anxious about baby's size and you have questions about cradle cap (or maybe torticollis). A visit to the doctor is an outing, but you pack like you're going to move in there. You never know what you're going to need!

My first appointments with Jack felt like a lifeline. We were worried about weight gain because my milk didn't come in for 5 days. I was reeling from the birth experience and I was so worried that everything was going to be okay (for both of us).

After the first appointment the day after our release from the hospital (5 days pp) the doctors were worried about his weight but still optimistic about breastfeeding, his weight loss was still a concern. They wanted us to come back. When we came back he had gained weight, my milk had come in- boobs swollen up to my chin. They told us everything was going to be fine. I was so relieved that as we were walking back to the car I burst into tears. I cried on the phone with my mom when I told her, I tried to pretend I wasn't crying but I'm pretty sure she knew... she always knows.

Going to the doctor is no longer life or death for me. I don't need reassurance that my little astronaut is doing fine but I love finding out his stats! How cute is this little blood pressure cuff? It's too much!!

Jack is 38.75 inches tall.
He weighs 37 lbs 8oz.

Simple & Fabulous

It's genius, it's inspired, it makes julienne fries! This is the epitome of simple fun. Brenna made goodie bags for her son, Amedeo's birthday with the ingredients for this Balloon on a String. The beauty of the thing is the whole kit and kaboodle is easy to acquire, inexpensive and it kept the kids (yes, both of them) entertained for at least an hour!

Obviously, I couldn't keep this a secret!Not to mention the giggles that ensued! Which allowed me some time to lay a swanky new peel and stick tiles in the laundry room. It's incredibly easy, I'm doing it totally myself (so entertaining the boys with this genius balloon doo-hicky is key to working on this project. Pictures to come.)

Have you noticed we have a bit of a floor theme going on around here?

Also, here's a cool yoga tidbit- Have you noticed when babies get to the age where they're squirmy they will try to throw themselves out of your arms? They always lead with their heart. They fearlessly throw their entire body sternum-first backwards to try to get out of your arms. Why do they do this? They're still connected to the universal.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Top 10 things I could do without

10. That feeling. That feeling that you're forgetting something or that you meant to do something. You can't put your finger on it but you're pretty sure you're somehow dropping the ball, but you have no idea which ball. I can make a mean to-do list but I'm bound to forget things every once in a while.

9. Boredom. It doesn't happen very often (obviously) but when I actually find myself with nothing to do I feel kinda lost. I'm always watching the kids or painting something or renovating something or crafting something, I'd even count catching up with my shows on the DVR something to do in a pinch. But when everything is done it's kinda spooky. Not necessarily bad, but just a little strange...

8. When You Tube videos won't play. Not catastrophic but it's kind of a bummer when you see a facebook post that says "This is the funniest video ever." or "This video clearly itemizes the meaning of life, don't miss it." And you can't get the darn thing to play. Ah, well.

7. There's nothing to eat. This feeling is actually really silly when you think about it; there are people all over who don't have enough to eat or don't have healthy foods available to them, or don't have a way to heat up a hot meal. That's truly awful (donate to a food bank, 'kay?). You know when you're standing there with the pantry or fridge door open wracking your brain for what to make but it appears you only have a packet of hot cocoa, an onion and a bottle of vodka? Not good, my friends.

6. DVD case Roulette. When a certain member of your family ::cough:: husband ::cough:: takes a DVD out of the player and instead of putting it back in it's case he puts it in the next case and the next case until your whole collection is totally out of whack.

5. Forgetting to take the trash out. Nothing beats hearing the trash truck in the morning and then remembering all your trash is still in cans on your deck and not out on the curb.

4. Reaching the end of the Internet. It happens about every 3 days or so that I run out of things to read on the internet. See number 9.

3. Zits. I'm going to be 30 in May, I am so over having zits! It's just ridiculous! On an upside, Photoshop is AWESOME!

2. Bad sleep. In general, when the kids don't sleep well at night or don't nap well during the day it means they're cranky and I'm cranky. It's Crank-a-palooza. I would prefer that my little angels sleep well 100% of the time, but honestly the fact that they need me at night sometimes is quite endearing.

1. Guilt. As a general rule, I believe guilt is unproductive. It leads to negative internal dialogue about how I should have done this or that better. Being hard on myself is not ahimsa (yoga teaching of non-violence), and the first place we should practice non-violence is with the self. Thus I will now do without guilt. (Riiiight, well at least I can try.)

Thanks to Katie for coming up with a great Tuesday blog theme. If you want to do one too head over to Sluiter Nation and link up! Also thanks to Grace for the idea about Zits, because I too can certainly live without those in my life!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Saludos de Peru!

Today we got a package!! My brother's girlfriend, Alba, is trekking across the world for the next 6 months. She just did a hike to Machu Picchu. She's blogging about her journey, which is so cool to see because I'm totally living vicariously through her!!

She sent us some loot!
Alpaca wool.
Hand dyed.
Hand made.

And hand carried from the Argoyo Quechua community through Machu Picchu to Cusco where they were air mailed to us! Awesome!

We love them!