Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Superhero Cape... to the Rescue!

I saw super cute no-sew superhero
capes on Pinterest, and knew they'd be the perfect craft for my mom's night craft group!

I looked around and found a few tutorials, but this one seemed the best for my needs.

I bought the supplies:
Adult size small t-shirts in bright colors
Heat bond interfacing
Colorful felt

So on a hot Thursday night, my friends came over with wine and snacks, and we got to crafting!

We cut the sleeves off our shirts, then cut all the way up the sides, leaving the collars in tact. We cut the fronts off the shirts, again leaving the collars. We had our capes! Time to decorate!

This is also where we made things more difficult for ourselves.
1) Felt was too thick and heavy to stay attached to our capes without sewing (or hot glue).
2) We cut out our shapes, then added the iron-on paper. We definitely should have added the transfer paper first, then cut our shapes!

But the end result, even if it did need some hot glue, was super awesome!



And yes, the kids love their capes!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Body after baby

Cute baby picture because yes.

It was pretty clear as Nate went off to work this morning in his last clean dress shirt, the one with the pinchy collar, that he could use a few more. So after I gave up on Gavin's nap, we were off to Marshalls.

I swore to myself walking in that I was only there for dress shirts. We'd be in and out of the store in no time. I wasn't shopping for myself. Besides, I don't know what size I am anyway!

Then I began to wonder: what size am I?! I have four shirts, three stretchy dresses, and three pairs of maternity pants that I've worn exclusively since May 18th, five and a half weeks ago. Maybe it was time for me to try on some clothes.

Here's what I learned:
1) I have no clue what's fashionable right now.
2) My boobs don't fit. Into anything.
3) I look ridiculous in maxi dresses.

I also learned that I can fit into a size 10 pant. It's not where I'd like to be, but not as scary as I'd feared. I found one dress for me (another cotton knit), and finally made my way to the men's dress shirts.

Upon arriving home, I ate a second lunch, half a cupcake, a rice crispie treat, and two Oreos. Clearly I could be a much smaller size very quickly if only I ate less stupidly and maybe got in some exercise. But at least now I have a starting point.

And Nate has two more days of shirts before he needs to pick up at the dry cleaner.

Linking up with Exploits of a Military Mama!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Boobie Snacks

Laura is two, observant, incredibly smart, with a wicked vocabulary and memory. And even if she weren't all of the above, it would be hard for her to overlook Gavin's method of eating: my boobs. I'm not shy or modest about feeding Gavin at home. When he's hungry, I pull out a boob and stick him on it.

Laura has taken note. She asks almost constantly when Gavin is getting his next boobie snack. She gives her dollies boobie snacks of her own. Just this week at school, she took her shirt off to feed a doll. Her shirt was off. At school. For a boobie snack. And please hear my little child saying that with a thick Baltimore accent: bewbie snack. Seriously.

We've been trying to talk to Laura about private parts. That they are not for talking about. That we keep them covered. They are private for a reason. But at the same time, I don't want Laura to be ashamed of her body or any of it's parts.

How do you talk to your young kids about privacy and appropriateness? Did your kids try to breastfeed toys at home or in public?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Gavin: One Month

Gavin went in for his one month well check yesterday. My good eater is 22 inches long and weighs 11 pounds!!

It's been a great first month. Gavin and Laura have adjusted really well to each other. Gavin sleeps and naps pretty well (with a few hiccups here and there)! He's a champion eater, too!

Laura's favorite part of Gavin is watching him get his diaper changed. She was peed on once, and now she's even more excited for diaper changes! I guess she likes the level of danger!

As for me? I'm still feeling really good. My snuggle bunny is napping on my chest right now, and I couldn't be happier. Truly.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Please send chocolate

What is it about being home that makes me want need sugar and chocolate so badly? It's like a have some sort of psychological trigger when I'm folding laundry: must have candy to sustain super-human housewife strength!

I am breastfeeding, so I need those extra calories, right? Right?! Er, maybe I'm supposed to be eating healthier options. But CHOCOLATE!! Pass the brownies!

Monday, June 18, 2012


I'm thirty years old, as of Saturday. Thirty whole years. If I'm lucky, I'm a third of the way through my life.

Sometimes 30 seems so old. Wasn't I just in college like a year ago? And then sometimes I look at my two kids in the back of the minivan, and I feel like I'm too young to have all that.

And then sometimes it feels like I've been thirty for years already. After all, Nate and most of our friends are turning 34 this year. I'm very much the baby in the group. But the reality of actually being thirty hit me a little harder than I thought it would.

I met Nate just a few months shy of my 20th birthday. The entirety of my 20's was spent with Nate by my side, planning our future. And now here we are, together, with our beautiful family (and a minivan).

Hello, Thirties! What will you bring me?

Thursday, June 14, 2012

I Smile

I noticed something the other day: I was just sitting around, smiling. Maybe that's a normal state for your face to be in, but it's not for mine. I'm not a smiley person. I would say I'm content, yes, but not sitting around smiling happy. I am much more of a serious person, complete with frowny crease in my forehead, than I am a smiley one.

I'm sure I was a smiley enough child. I remember laughing a lot. I remember a happy childhood. But somewhere along my road of life, I smiled less and less. Middle school berated my soul, leaving me tired, shy and a little cynical. In high school I decided that my looks were enhanced by an aura of dark and mysterious. By college, I had simply forgotten how to smile.

Until recently. Because here I am, watching some crappy movie on TV while my children nap quietly, and I am smiling. Not some stupid grin. Not a lingering laugh over a joke I heard. Just a contented, happy little smile on my face, sparkling from my eyes, shining from my heart. It's a very light feeling, this little smile.

In the last four weeks since Gavin's birth, I have relearned how to smile. Please do not think that it was my son only who taught me this beautiful trait. Hardly. In truth, it was my whole family - my family of four - who taught me to smile. Nate, Laura, Gavin, and even Riesling. I smile as I watch Laura rush over to her baby brother for a strawberry hug (he gets lots of those). I smile as Gavin coos at my breast. I smile as Nate and Laura giggle over a private joke. I smile at all the love I have at my fingertips. Gavin has made our family so complete (for now). I love my family, and for that I smile.

pouring my heart out

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Gavin and I had a really rough night last night.  I'm not even sure what exactly transpired.  By the fourth time he had me up, I was too bleary to remember anything any more.  Nate was up with him almost as much as I was.  We fed, rocked, fed, burped, cradled, fed, changed diapers, burped and fed some more.  Fed is a loose term, since Gavin was mostly too agitated to latch on and eat.  And with every missed latch, Gavin let out a shriek of frustration... and possibly agony.

We finally decided he wasn't actually hungry, just upset.  But by that time, I was also incredibly upset.  I felt like Gavin's distress was my fault - clearly I'd eaten something that was giving him a tummy ache.  And his inability to latch?  Definitely my fault - clearly I wasn't producing milk in the right way to get him eating properly.  He cried.  I cried.  I don't know if Nate cried, but I wouldn't blame him if he did.

At the back of my mind the whole night was the thought: this would be so much easier if I could give him a bottle.  I would feel so much less guilty if I could give him a bottle.

I have bottles in the kitchen, still in their packaging.  I spent (what felt like) hours considering boiling bottles at 3am to give Gavin some formula.  I did go downstairs to look in vain for my manual breast pump.  I started googling electric pumps.  Because if I could pump a little during the day, maybe Nate could give him a bottle at night?

All of these thoughts were desperate and incoherent.  But this morning, I woke up wondering: to pump or not?  To breast feed or not?

Going into this pregnancy, I told myself I would rent a pump, pump consistently while I was home on leave, then quit pumping (and also quit daytime feedings) after I went back to work.  Now that Gavin is here, I don't know what to do.  I haven't started pumping, and only just looked into a rental: $120 for a month.  At that price, I might as well just buy a pump.

But to buy a pump?  The good ones are $200+ and I don't want to use it when I go back to work (at least not during the day).

And to be perfectly honest?  I don't like breastfeeding.  I just don't.  I thought with Laura that it was the PPD that made me hate breastfeeding.  But nearly three weeks in, I'm feeling really healthy, I'm bonding with my baby, and I still don't like breastfeeding.  So is it worth buying a pump?  Should I keep going, trying to make this work?  Should I throw in the towel (and my credit card rating) and start formula feeding?

Last night was rough, and I don't want to rush into any emotionally charged decision.  But I am so torn.

On the other hand, Gavin rewarded me this morning with his first smile:


Sunday, June 3, 2012


Laura asked me to play with one of her Dora puzzles today. I didn't feel like it.

Laura, I don't really like Dora.
But Mommy, my do!

Oh. Oh my. Put in place by a two and a half year old. I had somehow forgotten that playtime isn't at all about me. Playtime is entirely about her.