Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Sling Anyone?

I have been researching baby slings and I don't know which way to go, so I need some experienced advice.

In my previous post I mentioned my inability to get things done around here. The reason for this has a name- his name is Warren.

Let me explain. Something magical happened when we took our trip to VA and ever since he has been sleeping completely through the night--about 10 or 11 hours every night! I know. It is awesome and I will take it, but during the day he has to make up the difference, which means he eats about every 1 1/2 hours. The only way I can even write these posts is because The Man bought me an IPad for my birthday/anniversary/Mothers Day present so I can post from the couch while Warren dines.

It's not just the frequent nursings that keep me out of commission though. I have a baby who wants to be held, talked to, sung to, and otherwise entertained every waking hour and, if I fulfill his wishes, he is happy all day long. So....I hold him- A LOT. And doing anything with a baby-in-arms is a challenge. Chopping onions? Awkward. Mopping a floor? A major pain.

With previous kids, the Baby B'jorn was a winner and all I ever needed to free up my hands with a baby in tow. However, with the "holding" hours I am pulling with Warren, I need to change it up here and there. Having him hang off the front of me hour after hour is not fun. Which brings me to the slings... I think they look a little silly and I swore I would never wear one, but I am going to eat my words because I think they may be just what I need.

Now, if you start to research slings, you will find that there is an entire "baby wearing" society of moms who believe that if you wear your baby most of the day they will be more independent and smart etc.. I even read a promotion from one mother who ALWAYS wears her baby, even in the shower!-well into their toddler years! (she has a special mesh sling she wears-- in the shower! I kid you not!) You have to admire her dedication to the cause, right?

Anyway, whether or not Warren turns out to be an independent genius, because I am lugging him around all day, remains to be seen. I am just doing it so he'll be happy and continue to give me my beauty rest at night.

Which one? the Maya Ring Sling looks good and I think can be used with bigger kids.

I know some women who loved the Moby Wrap- but it is a lot of yardage.(6 yards of knit fabric) I'm not sure I want to mummify myself to carry this kid. (however, again, I am prepared to eat my words if it works out the best.) Don't ask why I can't get this picture smaller- I have no idea!
There are countless other sling-type contraptions as well. Such as, the Over the Shoulder Baby Holder, The Peanut, the Baby K'tan, or a Hotsling. ( love the names these things have!)

Any advice? Maybe I should just order them all and return what I don't like.

Finished lists


I love a good list.

Most evenings before going to bed I can be found with note paper in hand writing all my "to-do's" for the following day. Without a list I am lost! ( mostly because of that early-onset dementia I seem to suffer, and which causes my children tremendous grief!) The success I feel at the end of each day is often gauged in direct correlation to how many of those items on my list have a line through them.

Problem? Yes, this is a problem, because with this particular criteria, I have become a total failure! My list is ALWAYS incomplete by a huge margin! Ending each day feeling that way is never good for ones self esteem. I go to bed thinking I'm a loser who just can't keep up and who will always have a grungy kitchen floor.

But, never fear! I have the solution to all my problems and I am putting it into use pronto! I got this particular idea from a super cute lady at church a week ago. She said that, instead of making her list before the day, she makes it after, and on her list she only writes down the things she accomplished- so everything has a finished line through it!

I had to laugh. What superb thinking! Thus, yesterday (a Monday, and historically a very long list day) I tried it out. I did not have a list. I went about my business- which mostly involved nursing, changing diapers and cleaning spit-up- and when the day was done I wrote down my to-do list. It looked like this:

-wash one load of laundry
-clean and adjust the jogging stroller ( which has been rotting in the garage for 4 years)
-make dinner

Three things! Wow! I did it all! Every last thing on my list was checked off! What a great day! I am such a go-getter!! ( I am not going to think about all those other things that were forgotten and missed. I am not... i am not....they do not exist to me...)

I highly recommend this plan to anyone with a social newborn who likes to be held all day. Just think- you can accomplish anything you put your heart to! I did! :)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Mother's day 2011

When we moved to the east coast (nearly ten years ago!) we thought our days of taking road trips to visit family were over. (And I do not jest when I say that I LOVE road trips. I have such great childhood memories of them and I get excited when I can pass on the experience to my own kids.) So, when my brother and his family moved to Virginia we were thrilled. Bring on the Travel Bingo!

Last week we took advantage of this great blessing of family and played hooky from school to take a week long trip to Virginia. Not only did we get to visit with my brother's family, but my parents came as well and we had a terrific week exploring Williamsburg, Jamestown, Fort Monroe, the beach and Busch Gardens. I'll post a little about our fun throughout the week, but today, being Sunday, I wanted to post about Mother's Day 2011 and why it was a precious one to me.

First, and foremost, I got to spend it with with my own sweet mother and be with her in person. Dad bought all the moms corsages to wear. It was great fun. My husband (he, who I have been informed, should not be named on this blog.. so I really need to come up with a pseudo name for him) and I laughed thinking about the last time he pinned a corsage to me, which would have been our high school homecoming dance way back in 1992! Yikes!)

I'm sure that many people would say the same thing, but I really do think I have the best mom! Isn't she beautiful?
On to the next great thing about mother's day: Warren's baby blessing. We chose not to bless him in NY so that we could share it with family in VA. He looked so precious in his little white outfit. (Interesting note....I bought it about 4 years ago at a time when I didn't think we would have anymore kids...but it was so soft and white and perfect for a baby boy so.... I just bought it! My subconscious, or fate, or whatever, just knew!) His dad gave him a beautiful blessing and, of course, I cried and cried! Thank goodness for water proof mascara!

I wish he would have shown his adorable smile for the pics, but he just wanted to chill that day.
Then I cried some more, because we ordained Tustin a deacon. How is it that my first born turned twelve and is such a little man now? He was so handsome in his suit and his dad gave him a beautiful blessing as well. More tears!
It was a perfect day and one in which I spent one moment after another reflecting on all my blessings. I grew up wanting to be a mother and now here I am, in the thick of it. I love being the mom to my little brood! It is the hardest thing I have every done, but it's also the best thing I've ever done too.

There are six of us now and we are all ( including the man and myself) growing up way too fast! Here is a picture where we at least look presentable. (Wherever that world is --where everyone gets those fabulous family "glam" shots-- we haven't visited it yet. The frameable wall photo continues to elude me! Urgh!)

Monday, May 16, 2011

My Little Poet


Laura is in first grade and has been writing a lot of poetry in class. Today she brought home from school a fat manila envelope filled with all her literary works. I thought I would share some of my favorites. This stuff is priceless.

First we have the one about me.

Mom
My Mom is so beautiful.
She helps me.
Even though you yell at me,
I still love you.
I love my Mom.

Just lovely... And here is the one that my husband gets. Can you tell who is the "good cop" parent in this household? So unfair.

Dad
Nice
Kind
Gentle
Helps Me
Fun to play games with
Kind as a bunny
Gentle as a bird
I love my Dad

Here is a great one for winter.

The Snow
The snow is white.
It is fluffy.
You can eat it.
But whatever you do,
Keep away from the yellow snow.
And don't stick your tongue to a pole.

I love these two as well...

Blue
Blue is the color of the ocean.
Blue is the feeling of sadness
Blue is the color of tears.
I love blue.


Box
A box can be anything you want it to be
It can be a boat.
It can be a house.
It can be a toy box.
But whatever it is,
It is a box.

There were dozens more where this came from. I think she is a terrific little writer. I think I will type them all up and get a book of "Laura's Poems" made.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Margarita cupcakes

Happy Cinco De Mayo!

Historically, I have never done anything to celebrate Cinco De Mayo with my kids, which is very sad because I love any excuse to have a party! This year, being that Tustin began his first semester of Spanish, I am going to get my act together and bring on the Latino flavor!

I've got dessert all taken care of with these super yummy Virgin Margarita Cupcakes. I smooshed two different recipes together (omitted all the usual alcohol) and made a change here and there. They are so delicious! I love anything that is tangy and limey so these are just up my alley.

Here's the recipe:

Margarita Cupcakes:
Cake:
1- white or yellow cake mix
1-3.5oz. instant vanilla pudding mix (dry)
4 large eggs
1/2 cup margarita mix
1 TB orange juice
1 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup water

Frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1.5 sticks butter, room temperature
zest and juice of 2 limes
2 tsp vanilla
4 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Combine cake ingredients and beat with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes. Spoon into cupcake liners and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool.

For the frosting: Combine the cream cheese, butter, lime juice and zest, and vanilla extract and beat until light and fluffy. Slowly add in salt and sugar, and mix until combined.

Frost cupcakes and top with a lime slice and sprinkle with coarse sugar.
Makes 24 cupcakes.

Now go and make them!

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