Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Oh Nursing, How I Love You.

Oops, I forgot about this blog for awhile...But I've had stuff going on, forgive me.  First of all, Otis is here!  He came December 16th at 33wks and 4days.  Read all about it here.  He stayed in the NICU for four days and then was discharged just in time for Christmas!! 

Things have been going really well, he's a good sleeper and overall very mellow.  He barely opens an eye when his big sister screams an inch from his face.  But the best thing is that he has taken to breast feeding like a champ!  The first week was hard, we supplemented with formula while he was in the hospital and I had to pump every three hours to make sure my milk came in.  It did.  He still didn't get latching on though, so I was using bottles.  I hated it.  I hated having to pump, I hated the whole washing twenty pieces of plastic and sterilizing them and then being able to finally feed the poor kid. 

But now, almost two weeks later, Otis is latching on and feeding.  Sigh of relief!  It is the most amazing thing ever.  I didn't nurse Ingrid, and I never felt like I was missing out on anything.  We certainly bonded just fine, and I always rocked with her when I gave her a bottle, she never was just given a bottle to hold by herself.  But...this is different.  Feeling every little tug, knowing I'm making this milk just for him, when he needs it.  I feel a lot more emotional about it than I thought I would.  To me, nursing this time around was just going to be cheaper.  But I will be sitting there on the couch with Otis attached to me and I just smile.  I don't know if it's just crazy hormones or what, but it makes me feel so happy that I can do this for him, I can nourish him. 

I love that I can just hold him and feed him without any extra preperation.  No bottles to mix, formula to measure, nothing to fumble around with.  At 2am when he starts squawking, I just lift him from his bassinet and feed him, no big deal.  If we're out and about and he gets hungry, I can feed him, whether I forgot the diaper bag or not.   Cheap, convenient, and it makes me happy.  Can't go wrong with that, can you?  I just wish I had known what I was missing with Ingrid...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Pros and Cons

I've been in the hospital for a week and a half now, halfway there to 34 weeks!  I'm getting sick of it and then someone comes in to make my bed with fresh sheets and I realize it's not all bad...So to make myself feel better, here's a list of pros:

1. People bringing me food.  And water, and juice, and snacks if I so desire.
2. People bringing me fresh towels and sheets.
3. Getting to nap throughout the day, whenever I feel tired. 
4. Not having to chase around a 2 yr old or hear "play with me, Mama!!"
5. No dishes to do or floors to sweep!
6. Time to do crafty stuff or read books. 
7. Full control of the remote control, with no husband turning it to football or daughter begging for cartoons.

However, I must vent as well.

1. People coming in every four hours to take my temperature, blood pressure, and to ask me the same stupid questions over and over and over even though I have never once answered yes to any of them.
2. 5:30am non stress tests for baby.  Seriously, they have to do it at 5am?? I'm here all day long.
3. Eating the same food every day.  I've tried pretty much everything on the menu and there are some things that are good, some that are disgusting, so I now only have a few choices of things to eat. 
4. Eating in bed, by myself.  That's kind of depressing...I miss family dinners with my little family.
5. Only seeing Brendan and Ingrid for an hour at a time, and most of the time Ingrid is going nuts being confined to a little hospital room where she gets told not to touch anything (there are wires everywhere and what 2yr old doesn't want to grab wires??)
6. Feeling that I could do this at home just as well, and then being told my amniotic fluid is too low for me to go home.  And then being told low amniotic fluid isn't going to cause any problems.  So why can't I lay in bed at home then?

Someday this will be something I'll throw in Otis' face when he's giving me grief "I layed in a hospital bed for three weeks for you!"  But for now it's just a frustration.  Which will pass, and then we'll have a wee baby to coo over. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

I Miss My Baby

I've been in the hospital now for six days.  Ingrid came to visit the first day but then my mom took her over to the other side of the state.  I can't remember if we've ever been apart for more than a few days.  It sucks.  Brendan is picking her up tomorrow but she can't even come visit because she's been sick with a stomach virus that's going around and I can't have her get me sick.  So another day will go by. 

I talked to her every day and it was good and bad.  Good because she barely had time for me, she was so busy and having so much fun with Gramma.  It snowed over there so she got to make snow angels and go "skiing" (sledding!) and play with dollhouses and toys we don't have at home.  It was bad because--she barely had time for me!!  Hi mama, I'm playing, bye mama, blow kiss!  I know 2 1/2 yr olds aren't the best phone talkers but come on, your ol' mom needs more than that! 

No, really I'd rather she is having so much fun with Gramma.  I couldn't bear to hear she had been crying the whole time.  But I do feel a bit useless.  Boohoo, poor me.  It's just late and I barely sleep here in the hospital and I miss my girl.  And as much as I want to see her tomorrow, I really don't want a stomach virus anywhere near me...I have enough to worry about without adding that!!  One day at a time, soon I'll be home again and be lamenting on how hard it is to take care of two, or how she's driving me nuts with her constant energy when I just want a nap. 

Sunday, November 28, 2010

And Then There are These Days...

Long story short, woke up at 2am, water has broken.  I'm 31 weeks along.  In the hospital trying to keep Otis in for three more weeks.  Hospital bedrest until he decides to come out.  Bored out of my mind already!  It's been 12 hours, I have a possible three weeks of this?  For slightly more info, I did a post on my other blog.

Hope your day is going better than mine :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We Have Good Days, Too.

I just wanted to be sure to document that it's not all hormones and stress around here.  Yesterday Ingrid and I had a lovely day.  We got up, put on a jazz station on the radio, made some wipes for our blog friends in Switzerland, and just relaxed.  We spent time together, Ingrid helping me with the scraps and dancing around the table.  After a rest, we went to the post office to send things out, then to the grocery store to get our Thanksgiving goodies.  And then we played with blocks, colored in her new Christmas coloring books, and somewhere in there she played by herself nicely.  Oh, and did I mention she slept until 8am?? 

Last night everyone in the house was up for some reason.  Ingrid got up three times saying she had to go to the bathroom, then when she was on the toilet she'd start crying that she didn't have to go and was cold, as if it was my fault she was in this situation.  As if I'd gotten her out of her warm, cozy bed to sit naked on the toilet at 1:30, 3, and 5am...I also had pregnancy insomnia, again, and was up twiddling my thumbs for a couple hours.  And at 6:10am Ingrid ran into the bedroom with some clothes "Mama!  I picked out my clothes for today!  Let's go play!"  Ugh. 

So, today started out being really crappy, with me yelling and getting really annoyed by every little thing that happened, but I've really been trying to turn those days around.  So we went to a friend's house, the girls dressed up like fairies, we ate warm zucchini bread, and Ingrid slept on the way home.  She let me rest for a whole hour, and then we played and made English muffin pizzas, and I let her make as big of a mess as she wanted to.  We got along, had a good day, and ended it with huge hugs and lots of I love yous.  Like it should be.

I just feel like it takes so much effort to be the happy parent that is patient and kind, and lately I just don't have time for it.  I am so freakin' tired all the time and I just want to have temper tantrums, too!!  But yesterday and today showed me that it's worth that little bit of effort to not fight with my two year old...It makes everyone so much happier!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sewing and Hormones and Toddlers, Oh My!

Yesterday was a hormonal one...When Brendan went to leave for work I just started crying.  For some reason it felt like too much work to be at home with Ingrid all day long (and night, too, he had to work until past her bedtime) so I just broke down.  And being the male he is, Brendan didn't say much and just left for work with a lame "Hope you have a good day."  Ingrid and I just seem to be butting heads lately, as I am really tired and not sleeping well at night, and not getting any rest during the day thanks to her bugging me the second I lay down.  And she just wants to play and wonders why the hell Mama can't get up off the couch for two seconds... 

Luckily I was able to turn it around.  I took a cat nap on the couch while Ingrid watched Sesame Street and then we got up and went to the indoor play place.  We stayed for three hours, and would've stayed longer if they only sold lunch.  I get the whole food allergy thing, but seriously, if you can't bring outside food, then you have to serve lunch!  Hungry toddlers are everywhere, not to mention their preggo mamas.

Anyway, Ingrid got to run around and I got to sit and drink coffee.  There was a German speaker's playgroup going on so there were about ten women speaking German all around us.  I swear I am a magnet for the Germans!  Every time I go to a park I hear someone speaking German.  Ingrid was listening to them and knew it wasn't English so when I would ask her a question she'd respond in nonsense, I guess thinking she was speaking German!  It was pretty funny.  I told her the words I knew, but it's been awhile...

When we got home I had an email that the Blue House was looking for new items, so I set out to make my lists and get stuff ready to drop off there.  Ingrid once again got out the felt box and played while I cut more garlands out, and after she went to bed I cut out more things to sew.  Today is going to be a PJ day, as Brendan will take the car for another job interview and we'll be home sewing.  Hooray!

He told me hopefully by next week we'll know where we're going.  I sure hope so, I'm getting awfully nesty, wanting to wash baby clothes and set up an area for the little guy.  Right now everything is in boxes under the basement stairs.  I'd like to see tiny things hanging up, and baskets of tiny cloth diapers!  Patience...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Third Trimester Already??

That's right, I'm almost 29 weeks.  Last time I went to the midwife she gave me a packet of papers for birthing options, hospital tours, and parking passes for the big day.  It kinda freaked me out--it's not that time yet!

Things around here are good, but hectic.  Brendan has had a few interviews and has another major one coming up on Monday.  He's off to Milwaukee again for a second interview for a job he really wants, and they are hiring like right now so if he were to get it, what does that mean??  Not only are the holidays coming up but so is a brand new baby.  Makes moving a little tough, you know?

Otis has been moving around like crazy, doing flips and rolls and making my belly look quite crazy.  Brendan is so funny, he just does not get into the pregnancy thing at all.  I could sit and stare at my moving belly for hours, while he touches it once, feels a move, and immediately grabs his hand back.  I laughed at him and said what's the big deal?  He said he knows in his head it's okay but he feels like he's going to hurt the baby or something.  By putting a hand on my belly.  If he saw how Ingrid treats me he wouldn't be so worried...She is constantly climbing on me and elbowing me in the belly, or hitting me or poking her finger as far as it will go (not far) into my belly button. 

Yesterday we got some new pjs for Ingrid at the consignment store--they have "Big Sister" on the shirt, she was SO excited to put them on as soon as we got home.  She seems excited to be a big sister but who knows what that means in her tiny noggin!!  Hopefully she'll be okay when Otis gets here but that's another thing to think about--she's going to have a new brother and move to a new house right on top of each other...Two major things at once, hard enough for adults, much harder for kids.  Nothing I can do about it now, though, is there? 

So that's that, more of the same.  Thinking about jobs, moving, babies, being sick, stressed, and trying to enjoy life as usual while we are in this limbo...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

My Little Runaway

Twice in the past couple days Ingrid has given me a heart attack by disappearing.  Yesterday we were enjoying a lovely fall afternoon outside.  I had gotten the newest issue of The Mother and Ingrid was making stone soup for me to sniff and sip.  She'd go into the trees and grab some leaves and twigs, then come back to me and ask me what it needed.  We had been doing this for awhile when I made the stupid mistake of asking if it needed a pinecone in it.  She agreed it did, but then I said, oh no wait, we don't have any pine trees in our yard, so no pinecones. 

Ingrid wasn't going to let that stop her, however, so she decided to take off on her own, without telling me, to go find a pinecone.  I thought she'd just gone to the front yard, but when I went there she was nowhere to be found.  Sometimes she goes around the house, so I walked around, calling her name.  I heard her, but she wasn't anywhere near our house!  I went back to the front calling her name, and then I saw her.  A block away, across the parking lot of the church next door to us.  The church, which is on a busy street, has pine trees in front.  Holy shit, kid, get back here!!! 

I tried to explain to her how it was dangerous to go near the busy street, and that she's only supposed to leave the yard with mama or daddy.  But she's 2 1/2, does she get that???

Then today we were getting ready to leave the library.  We were still in the kid's area, and I stopped to look at a magazine.  In that span of two seconds I lost her.  She just took off, I had no idea to where.  Again, I look around, trying to stay calm, figuring she's nearby somewhere.  She wasn't anywhere in the kid's section so I went out to the adult section and there she is, by the door, pushing the button that operates the handicapped doors.  I said Ingrid!  Where were you going?  "Outside."  Like, duh mom.  You said we were leaving, I was leaving! 

Seriously, heart attacks.  I try not to freak out about things like this, because I tend to have faith that nothing bad will happen.  But then I think holy shit, how fast something terrible could happen!  Not even kidnapping so much but getting outside near busy streets and getting plowed over by any one of the terrible drivers around here...

I made the mistake of telling Brendan about yesterday and he freaked out on me.  He's a lot more cautious than I am, which I hate.  He's always yelling at her to stay out of the road even though she's nowhere near it.  It drives me nuts because I like to trust that she does know some things about safety.  But then something like her disappearing happens and I wonder if I give her too much freedom?  Like she just trusts that everything will be okay and she knows what she's doing so she doesn't get why mama is screaming for her when she's just looking for a pinecone.  Ahhh, kids.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I Do It Myself, Mama!

I love that Ingrid is little miss independent but man, it's testing my patience.  Especially at 5am, when she needs to go to the bathroom and is still sleep drunk and can't function, but refuses to admit it and allow me to help her...

That was this morning when she got me up to go to the bathroom.  I unzipped her footy pjs, pulled down her pull up and she climbed up on the seat.  Suddenly she realized that she wanted to unzip her pjs so she had a spectacular fit, jumping off the toilet, screaming she wanted to "do it myself, mama!!"  Ugh, seriously?  At 5am?  I tried explaining to her that she was already out of her pjs and I was not, in fact, going to let her put them back on only to take them off herself.  Not at 5am!!  She ended up screaming and crying until I put her pjs back on and ushered her back to bed, where she fell asleep for another couple hours.  Sigh.

Yesterday was a lot of  that--whatever I was doing she wanted to help.  I love that, I do, because I remember "helping" my mom do things around the house.  So when there's laundry to be folded, sure, help.  When I'm cutting things for my etsy shop and there are scraps, sure, go ahead and throw them away.  But if I'm making chili over a hot stove, no, you can't help. 

When I was cutting up peppers for said chili, I gave her a chunk of one and a butter knife and told her to go to town.  She then got frustrated she couldn't do it herself.  It's so hard because sometimes I do try to let her help with whatever she can, but then there are things she just isn't capable of and it makes her mad, but she won't NOT ask to help.  Does that make sense??  If I say  no, you can't do it, she gets mad.  If I say, sure, go ahead and try but then she can't do it, she gets mad.  I guess it's her problem not mine, right?  At least she's understanding her limits? 

Anyway, she's a great helper, she really does get a kick out of doing whatever it is I'm doing, and just lately she's started asking to sew with me.  I have so many ideas of little gifts for the holidays, like a kid sized broom, and those cardboard lacing cards.  But in the meantime, sometimes I just want to get stuff done.  In five minutes as opposed to an hour.  Patience, Amber, patience...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Stress Dreams

No matter how calm I feel on the outside about having another kid, and dealing with Brendan getting a job and having to move soon, it creeps up on me in strange ways.  Usually I have stress dreams.  While pregnant with Ingrid it involved working at the coffee shop where I met Brendan.  Somehow things were always dirty, orders were getting overlooked, customers were rude and I woke up in a cold sweat.

Last night I had two of these gems.  Both involved not knowing what to order from a menu at a restaurant, which I find amusing as I have never had that problem!  In one of the dreams everything on the menu was $40-60, so perhaps I'm worried about money??  And in the other I kept asking for my cup of coffee with two creams and they kept ignoring me.  I don't know what that was about...

I'm glad I'm able to let go of my worries through dreams, though.  Because in the daytime really I am pretty relaxed.  I daydream about our future and what it holds and what the possibilities are, but I don't really stress too much because I have no control over where we end up.  Frankly, neither does Brendan.  He can just go on interviews and do his best and whoever offers him a job will give us a new life.  How can you stress about that?  We have absolutely no control.  Instead of that worrying me, I just let it go and see where life takes us.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


I'm almost six months along now, can you believe it??  And just yesterday it finally hit me FOR REAL that we are going to have another baby.  It's been all in the hypothetical up until then.  Yes, someday we'll have a baby, someday these tiny diapers will be put on something other than a Cabbage Patch Kid.  And then yesterday I stood in front of the mirror and looked at my expanding belly and felt little kicks and rolls and it hit me--there is a baby in there!!

Ingrid and I went to Salvation Army and had a great time searching through the kid's clothes.  I found some amazing things for my friend Heather's etsy shop 3RingCircus, I got some new "cozy pants" for Ingrid, and I got a little tiny newborn outfit that has a moose on it, and the feet are tiny moose, too!  It's for bringing wee one home from the hospital.  Again, it hit me that we will go into the hospital with a big belly and come home with a wriggling newborn, amazing!

I have been pretty down lately about not knowing where we'll be going next, as Brendan looks for jobs.  We're not going to be in this apartment for too long, so I don't see the point in making it very homey.  And then I get depressed because there are no pictures hung or curtains or anything.  And I have boxes of stuff for when Otis comes but I can't do anything with them, no nesting at all, because we will either move before he gets here or right after.  It's frustrating.  But yesterday I got over it and decided that I should just do little things to make myself feel at home again, even if it's only for a few months.  So I'm making curtains for my kitchen today out of this cute lemon print fabric I've had on hand.  And I have a matching yellow rug I found in the basement.

I cleaned up the basement finally yesterday--what a chore!  Ingrid used to have her play room down there and then over the summer, because we didn't have a dehumidifier, we got mold.  After cleaning all that up, I just threw stuff down there, and every time I'd go do laundry it would bug me that I wasn't more organized.  And that we had about five lamps from old apartment dwellers that didn't work shoved under the stairs.  And that we got more toys for Ingrid and they were taking over my living room and I really really wanted a place for her to go play again.  SO...a little sweep and mop, throw out old lamps, move baby boxes under stairs, move furniture around, wash rug, and move toys downstairs again, and there you go.  A playroom again!

So things will change, as they always do, and I have to remind myself that I can roll with it, deal with it, it will all work out.  Some days I just want to be settled somewhere, to know we're going to be somewhere for awhile.  And others I realize we're still in the early stages of our marriage and family, and this is what we'll look back on and laugh at how young and carefree we were.  Someday.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

My Sleeping Child

Brendan and I are on a mini vacation away from Ingrid this weekend.  My mom took her to her side of the state and I've been calling for daily updates.  As much as I love that I can leave Ingrid with her Gramma for a few days without worrying about her, it really does bug me that she's a perfect angel for my mom!!  Our sleeping patterns as of late have been her waking up at 6am, being ready to play play play or being crabby, either of which is hard to deal with before coffee.  She doesn't take a nap but acts crabby as all get out by 3pm.  She cries and screams when it's time to take a bath, even though two seconds into it she's having fun.  She goes to bed at 7 and I finally FINALLY get a break!

Talking to my mom today, though, it seems Little Miss Liddle is sleeping like an absolute champ for Gramma.  Which is good, don't get me wrong, but what the hell???  Taking hour long naps, going to bed at 7 with no problems, sleeping until 7:30 or 8am!!  Whose child is this, and why can't she come stay at our house??  My mom says it's because she's outside all the time (they're at the horse farm on the lake) and that it's quiet, but she could be outside all day long, and our house is not noisy by any means, and she'd still give me troubles with her sleeping...

I remember babysitting as a high schooler and the parents would be so surprised that their kids went to bed easily.  I always thought what?  What's the big deal?  You put a kid to bed and they go to sleep, right?  Now as a parent I realize kids know how to push your buttons...And we let them, because we're so damn tired we don't have it in us to fight them...

Well, at least I've gotten to take multiple naps this weekend.  And Ingrid has apparently caught up on all the sleep she usually misses.  So we'll be well rested when we see each other again, and we can get right back into our lovely pattern of not sleeping.  Dammit.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Preschool? Or not?

Ingrid is getting to that age where I'm starting to think about preschool next year.  At first I was against it, thinking we already do lots of fun things throughout the day and she is obviously a smart cookie and learning enough from her dear old mom.  But then the other day we were painting and I thought oh, how much would she love to do this with other kids?  Or play with other kids instead of having to beg Brendan and I to play block towers again?  Or just have some time away from her crab apple of a mom a couple times a week?  It started to sound like a good idea for her.  For me, I would totally take the few hours a week break.  I hear everyone gets teary dropping their kid off to school for the first time and I just don't get it--although when it's my turn I'm sure I would be the same way...

Anyway, so other than the fact that preschool is EXPENSIVE around these parts, something else made me pause and rethink sending Ingrid away for her learning experiences.  Someone posted something about their 3 1/2 yo getting homework from preschool??!!  It totally disgusted me. 

Have you heard about this?  Homework for that young?  I'm sure it's not a worksheet of algebra problems, but still.  The point, to me, of preschool is getting the kids together to learn how to work together, how to sit and listen, how to interact with other kids.  It's not to learn things academically.  I don't expect my preschool to teach Ingrid her ABCs or 123s, or how to read.  I just want her to play and learn how to deal with other people her age.  And that doesn't seem to me to be something that a send home worksheet could do.  So I started to think about what I would do if Ingrid was sent home some stupid piece of homework and I got all riled up. 

I looked up online and came across a teacher's website where teachers were talking about the pros and cons of homework for young children.  Some said the kids needed to get used to it for higher grades, but I disagree.  Others said they only gave things out to kids who needed more help, or maybe a monthly thing like cut out pictures of a certain color or something.  I can see that, I guess.  One teacher said she does it to make sure parents are involved, but isn't the point of homework for the kids to do it?? 

I'm still unsure.  I know I have a choice when it comes time to send her or not, and where to send her if I do, so I don't know why I'm freaking about this.  I just hate the idea of not having control over her education!!  Of having her be one of 20 kids instead of my lovely Ingrid who's so smart and sassy and funny.  I've got a year to figure it out I guess...

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Why I Have Kids

A couple weeks ago a world traveling friend posted pictures of her latest adventure to New Zealand and Australia.  They were gorgeous and really got me thinking of how I had always wanted to be a traveler, but how I've ended up two hours away from my home town being a stay at home mom!  I had been having a bad day anyway, with Ingrid peeing all over the place and us both being crabby, and I thought to myself oh my god, why did I have kids???  I could be seeing the world and making all my mom friends envious of my freedom! 

Yesterday answered that question very nicely.  I know the answer is because kids are awesome.  They really can just melt your heart and make you love them more than you ever knew was possible.  They completely change your life and most of the time it is for the better.  But after weeks of wanting to sleep and have a break, I was starting to forget all that.  And then yesterday happened.  Ingrid and I were sitting on the front stoop enjoying the fallish weather.  I was flipping through a magazine and she was babbling away to herself next to me.  Then she leaned over and rubbed my back.  "We're best friends, Mama."  I said oh honey, yes we are!  And she hugged me and said "I love you so much!" 

Talk about melting the heart.  It was just what I needed.  I suddenly remembered that before kids I got a lot of sleep but had never felt the pure joy of something so simple as a small hug.  Or marveling at the dexterity of my 2yo as she built a block tower.  Or watching them be social at the park.  Being a mom is great.  Hard, but great.  And the world will still be there when Ingrid is off to college (and Otis, for that matter!)  Brendan and I will get our time to see the world, and until then we'll just have to enjoy what we have.  A sweet little girl that thinks I'm her best friend!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Oh my god, like, the mall!!

I never shop at malls, ever.  Not since a long long time ago when I had extra cash and would go to H&M or Old Navy, or maybe get some shoes from a department store.  But the past few poor years of my life I've stuck to Target or the thrift stores.  But now I'm pregnant.  And I need a new bra.  And I'm not going to thrift that.  So, off to the mall I go.

I'm actually looking forward to it just for the pure fact of it being such an oddity.  At a thrift store you have to dig, at a mall you have things displayed for you.  How novel!  Instead of searching for the maternity section (which only has the most god awful pants from 1995) there is a whole store devoted to pregnant ladies!  Just imagine!

Also, after having found out the gender of bub #2, and seeing there are big sales at the kid stores, I'm going to have fun looking for a boy.  I was like this when pregnant with Ingrid, too--even if I didn't have a ton of money, I bought things because hey, I'm pregnant and uncomfortable and tired and having a shitty week and I need some retail therapy.  I know buying things won't make me happier, but you know what will?  Not busting out of my bra!! 

So I'm, like, totally off to the mall today!  I feel like such a teenager, if not for the fact I'll be dragging along a 2yr old with plenty of snacks and games to keep her occupied.  Who am I kidding, that is an American teenager these days, isn't it?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

It's A....

BOY!!  In case you care, I have ultrasound pics posted on my other blog.  A boy, I am so excited!  Otis Robert, due January 30th, 2011.  Yay!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Preparing for the Bub

Well, I am officially in maternity clothes.  I tried a big skirt a few days ago and when I sat down I felt like my uterus was being smooshed.  So, elastic waist, here I come!  I love wearing maternity clothes for the most part anyway, I never had a hard time adjusting to them.  I always have a poochy belly that doesn't fit right into regular pants so to not have to camouflage it is heaven!

Today Ingrid and I went to the local cloth diaper store and looked for some prefolds.  I have had a hell of a time getting some used off diaperswappers.com!  If you order them brand spankin' new for a dozen, they are usually around $27 with shipping.  Some people wanted $29 for their used ones!  Maybe they are crazy good ones, but still, I am not paying more for used than for new, thank you very much.  Anyway, today I found 18 little wee newborn prefolds for 60cents a piece!  Considering these may only work for a month or so, hooray for savings! 

I also looked through the baby section at Target yesterday.  How on earth do people not find out the gender beforehand??  You used to be able to get gender neutral green or yellow but now every single thing is pink pink pink or blue blue blue.  Even when I knew I was having a girl I hated to buy pink, so that really bums me out that you can't even get green stuff anymore.  Or if it is green it has flowers and ruffles.  Sheesh, not all girls are frilly.  Luckily we are good thrifters in our house, so we have a couple boxes of teeny shirts and gowns and footed pjs to get us through the first month or so.  They look so tiny!!  Ingrid kept holding things up to her saying she was going to wear it, I don't think she quite gets that she isn't the baby I'm talking of anymore!!

Other than that, we aren't really feeling the need to prepare too much more.  A friend has a car seat and bassinet, we already have a couple slings, and I know how to make blankets :)  Plus, what's the point of preparing much in our house if we're not going to be here?  Brendan just informed me that his job will be done in February so he'll have to have a new one lined up by then.  I looked at him dumbfounded--"You do realize I am due January 30th, right?"  His job, by the way, will most likely NOT be in the town in which we currently reside.  Which means a big move out of state either being immensely pregnant or with a very newly born baby.  Gulp.  I am not sure how to take this, as I was under the impression we were going to be here until spring, giving me at least a couple months to get used to two kids before having to schlep them to a new house...

So, preparing what I can right now is all I can do.  Diapers, gowns, and tshirts.  The rest we'll figure out later!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

If Mama Ain't Happy...

Boy, does the saying "If Mama ain't happy, ain't no one happy" sure make sense.  Yesterday Ingrid woke up crying.  At everything.  I was super tired because she had gotten up a few times in the night, Brendan was tired because he was up watching TV late, so neither of us wanted to get up to deal with her.  We tried to entice her to come into bed and snuggle with us, but that kid is so particular.  She loves to snuggle in bed...with me.  If Brendan is near, she yells at him to get up, go take a shower, Daddy!  Since Brendan was not moving she threw a fit.  I followed suit and told her to get out of our room.  The morning just went downhill from there.

The whole day was LONG and sucky.  Lots of yelling, lots of tears and whining, nothing productive got done.  Brendan decided that it was a good idea to look at cars, although it was pouring down rain.  We went (why??) and Ingrid just wanted to splash in puddles.  When neither of us wanted to do the same she, you guessed it, threw a fit.  We went back home, she fell asleep for two seconds in the car but wouldn't sleep at home.  It was one of those rainy days that if you don't have kids is really nice and relaxing.  You can just curl up with a good book or veg in front of the TV.  But with kids it sucks.  Ingrid wanted to color, no play, no read books, no watch TV.  Her attention span was super short, her fuse was super short, we didn't really feel like playing with her anyway, so it just was not a good afternoon.

Fast forward to today!  Today I woke up to the same exact situation--Ingrid coming in our room and crying because Brendan was still in bed.  But today I felt rested and not sick, I was ready to get up and take her downstairs right away.  She has been happy and playing by herself all morning, ate some breakfast, sang some songs.  Ingrid has just been pleasant, a complete change from yesterday.  And why?  Because Mama is happy this  morning. 

It really sucks sometimes that that's the case.  Sometimes I'm just not in a good mood.  Especially being pregnant and tired and sick, I do not want to have the happiness of the household hanging on my shoulders.  Mamas need to be bitchy sometimes, too, you know?  I try my hardest to be patient and kind, but sometimes I just want to scream to Brendan to get his ass out of bed and deal with his daughter so his pregnant wife can get some rest.  Sometimes I just want to scream at Ingrid to quit her damn whining.  Sometimes I just don't feel like being the bigger person, but I know it's up to me to keep the mood light and happy.  Today that is easy, yesterday was not. 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Three Cheers for Ingrid! And Babies!

After a harrowing first night of no nuks, we are now settling into our new big girl routine.  Ingrid has stopped asking for her nuks for the most part, except when she wakes up at 5am.  After reminding her we don't have them anymore, she calms down and goes back to sleep for another hour, although I'm not able to.  Oh well.  Better than screaming for hours, right?

There was even a nap yesterday, how amazing is that? 

This just goes to show that I think we parents make more of a deal of things than the kids do.  I was SO worried about how it would go, SO worried that Ingrid would have a really hard time with this transition.  I was the same with her giving up bottles, and her crib, and both of those times it was a short couple days of getting used to things and then back to normal.  Kids are pretty resilient. 

In other news, I think I felt a wee kick in my belly this weekend.  I'm a little over 15 weeks so I'm not sure I'm supposed to feel it yet, but I swear it wasn't gas, it was in the same spot way down low where I know my uterus is, and since I know what it feels like from Ingrid, I don't think I'm imagining it!  This is exciting, because I was just starting to get that feeling that I'm not really pregnant, I'm really just fat and lazy and tired and sick.  This first part where you don't look pregnant and there's nothing going on internally to remind you you're pregnant is so hard!  It's hard to be excited, it's hard to think of the positives.  But when that kicking starts, oh boy!  All the sudden it comes crashing down--there is a human being in there.  That is so strange and cool!

Saturday, August 7, 2010


Last night was our first night of no nuks.  Since Ingrid didn't take a nap yesterday she was tired and whiny by 6pm.  She was in bed by 7:30, crying but yawning in between howls, so I figured she'd calm down and zonk out.  She did.  Aaaahhh!  She actually fell asleep better than she usually does, actually.  Success!  Or was it???

Around 10:30 she woke up crying for her "green nuk!!"  Yes, she had a favorite one, and it broke my heart to hear her ask for it knowing I couldn't give it to her.  We have been offering her hugs or a song instead of a nuk if she needs comforting, so I went in and rubbed her back, sang her a lullaby, gave her a kiss.  She was up crying so pathetically for the next two hours!  Oh, it just broke my heart, but this is why we threw them in the actual garbage outside the house, so at 2am we wouldn't be going to find one stashed away somewhere.  We wanted them gone, they are gone.  Now we just have to deal with the consequences! 

Ingrid wouldn't come to bed with me at first, she was saying "stay in Ingrid's bed!  You go to Mama's bed, bye Mama!"  And then as soon as I'd leave she'd wail "I need my mama!"  Oh my god, kid, my heart is already breaking, please spare me the theatrics!  Finally I convinced her to come into my bed, I sang her back to sleep and she slept for a few hours.  Then she got up at 5 and has been so fun since then...It's been one of those days you'd like to fast forward.  Luckily I have a haircut appointment this afternoon so I can escape my crabby house for a couple hours!

Here's to a better night tonight.  And a less crabby day tomorrow.

Friday, August 6, 2010

So Long, Nuks.

I threw away Ingrid's nuks (pacifiers) this morning.  Just cold turkey, say good bye to them, honey, in the trash they go!  We've been talking about how babies use nuks but not big girls and she's really into being a big girl.  And Brendan and I wanted her to have it gone before the baby gets here, and she was up screaming for it twice last night, so...time to go!  I have always disliked seeing kids walking around trying to talk around their pacifiers, and she was starting to do that.  She only had it at naptime and bedtime, it usually didn't leave her bedroom, so it wasn't like it was affecting her speech, but it drove me nuts when she'd spit her words out while sucking on that thing. 

Naptime wasn't happening today, even though I tried to wear her out.  We had to go to the car place to get a part put on, bright and early at 8am.  Then we went to run errands, stopped at a park, and came home to pack a picnic and go to the pool.  By 12:30 she was laying her head down on my shoulder and asking to go home.  Of course, once we got there she was all engines go again, go figure...So we're trying to do the one hour rest time, I gave her books and a bottle of water and told her she had to be quiet and rest.  Ha!  That kid does not sit still if she doesn't feel like it.  I kind of rested but mostly just kept hearing her banging things around in her room, knocking the fan over, jumping on the bed, singing songs.  Sigh...is it really the end of naptime?  Or will she learn how to zonk out without a piece of plastic in her mouth?

Bedtime tonight should be interesting.  Hopefully without a nap she'll be okay, but who knows.  Eventually she'll have to sleep, right? 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Sitting for Story Time

A few weeks ago a friend and I took our 2yr olds to a bookstore for story time.  All the other kids sat nicely while our children ran amok and didn't listen to a thing the lady said.  I thought maybe we should talk about that, so we've been really focusing on listening lately.  This morning I said we could go to the library story time if she could listen to the story and sit still.  Ingrid, of course, being on a "big girl" kick, said she could.  She could not.

We got there and she started running past all the other kids sitting there nicely to try to find the toys they usually have out.  I grabbed her and said no, listen there's a guy playing a song, let's sing along!  She gave me her mad look and ran away.  I wrangled her to the back and told her once again she had to sit and listen or we would go home, she screamed in my face that she wanted to stay.  *deep breath* okay. 

She refused to sit down and anything I would say just got a scream instead.  Moms are looking, kids are looking, it was embarrassing.  When we used to go to story time it was for kids under 2, so there wasn't a huge expectation of sitting still.  Half the kids were running around and would only stop to sing a song they recognized.  I never felt bad about it.  But lately it seems like every other kid her age can sit still for a story and a song.  All these little 2yr olds sitting like little ladies and gentlemen, and here's my monster running around like she never gets play time! 

Part of me could care less, I love having my spitfire kid and why should I care if she has the attention span for story time?  She can sit for hours at home reading books, and she knows the words to multiple songs.  It's not like she really needs anything from story time.  So why do I care?  Is it just because of the looks from other moms?  And why are those bitches giving me looks anyway??  I'm sure their kids all have their moments...

Or do kids need to learn to sit still and listen?  Is it one of those socialization things they should learn how to do?  It's rude to not listen and to disrupt story time for others, but is she capable of understanding that?  Am I just expecting too much from a 2yr old?  Until I figure it out I'm just going to avoid story time for awhile.  There's nothing to be gained from it and it just frustrates me and doesn't seem to be very fun for Ingrid.   

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Back to School Already?

Truly the end of summer approaching us here.  I was about to get all pissy that the back to school stuff has taken over all of Target, but then I realized people are probably starting school in a few weeks...I am once again so glad I am not in school!

Have I ever told you how much I loved/hated school?  Brendan and I were just talking about that as we watched the movie Dazed and Confused.  There's a scene showing the last day of school and how excited everyone is and Brendan said that was always his favorite.  I was a nerd, my favorite was the first day of school.  It always held so much promise--would there be new kids to befriend?  Any cool new teachers?  What would I learn that year?  Seriously, NERD!

Somewhere in the mix I started hating school though, I just stopped caring.  Learning was still cool, but damn, there is so little of that going on when you have 25 other kids in your class, all of whom are going at a slower pace than you are.  I thought college would be so much better and then that was just full of those same people I hated in high school.  So school became this horrible thing I felt I had to get through. 

Every semester was the same, I'd get all excited about my new classes and my new notebooks and folders and pens.  I'd be really pumped to read the books on our list, and I'd make it to class in time to get a good seat.  Then a couple weeks into it I would realize no one else was talking or asking questions but me and maybe one other person, so basically we were just getting talked at.  I'd think, shoot, I don't have to get out of bed for this!  And then I'd end up crying on the phone to one of my good friends about how much I hated school and where was I going with it and did I really have to go? 

One semester I decided that no, I did not have to go through with it.  Not if I didn't want to, which I obviously didn't.  I had a good nannying job, I liked my life how it was, I didn't have a set path so school was just a thing I was paying for but not enjoying.  So I quit.  And boy did that feel good!!  I have never once looked back and thought it was a bad thing.  I nannied, I got married, I had my own kid, I started my etsy shop.  Things are okay.

But now I'm a mom and I wonder what I'll say to Ingrid if she tells me she doesn't want to go to college.  I realize that had I gone and just done it and stayed in for five years I would've at least gotten a degree, even if I never used it.  I sometimes wish my parents had forced me to go.  But then again, this is me, and my life has been my life because of the choices I've made.  Who would I be if I had gone to college right out of high school?  On the other hand, look at my husband:  college done in four years, took a couple years off, got his phd, and now he's all set to get a kick ass job.  I'd much rather see Ingrid do that than watch her struggle through her 20s like I did...

Anyway, back to school time always makes me think of these things.  Part of me wants to go buy new folders and pens and part of me is glad that I can travel during the fall and not have to worry about a school schedule.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Mold Attacks!

Last night I found that there was mold covering almost everything in our basement.  We have not only storage down there, but we've put a play room down there with almost every single toy we own for Ingrid!  So I had to get some bleach water and rags and scrub down what I could.  Unfortunately about half the toys had to go. 

I was sad about the talking Lola doll.  She had black all over her poor face and I couldn't wash her because she's got batteries.  Into the trash...along with a few other stuffed things that were beyond washing.  Her kitchen got a nice scrubbing but still smells pretty bad so I think we may have to get rid of that too.  Half her fake food went into the garbage, and some books were pretty nasty, too. 

After a couple hours of scrubbing and probably inhaling more bleach and mold spores than is healthy for a pregnant woman, I had all the toys out of the basement and put away upstairs.  The good thing is that Ingrid hasn't played with these toys for some time, as we've spent so much time outside in the sun.  So bringing up the toys that would stay was like getting all new toys to her!  She has kept busy all morning.  And it's nice that I cleaned something in this house and got to reorganize things that had been slipping into disaster zone. 

Unfortunately some of our belongings were hit, too.  We had to throw out the baby backpack, which was broken anyway, so not too huge of a deal.  A sleeping bag sack is disgusting but hopefully the expensive sleeping bag is unharmed.  Our backpacks luckily were not in harm's way, and all the baby stuff we have accumulated was thankfully in plastic bins and is okay.  When we were in Milwaukee last week we saw the devastation of everyone's basements flooding, so I felt lucky that we could at least salvage half of what we had down there.  And I'm feeling lucky that none of my sewing stuff was harmed!!  That really would have killed me!

So now another day of reorganizing and downsizing and we have a clean living room with a new sewing nook, and Ingrid has a new room with all her toys stashed away nicely.  It was nice to have a playroom but it will be nice to let her play in her room, too.  As long as she still has a place to store her toys without me having to step on them every two seconds, I'm okay!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Quit Selling Me Stuff!

I just got my issues of The Mother magazine, and Mothering magazine.  To look at them side by side is funny.  It totally made me realize that even though Mothering is geared toward a more natural hippy dippy kind of parent, they still are a big magazine that have to run ads to make it happen.  So while Parents magazine has ads for Pampers and expensive strollers, Mothering has ads for Bum Genius and expensive baby carriers.  But they're still the same--selling me things I don't need!! 

I remember when I learned about slings and I wanted to get one on a limited budget.  Some of them were pretty expensive but I always saw how you could make your own.  I never did.  I spent the money and got a ridiculously expensive Hotslings pouch, which I love, but now that I know I didn't have to fork over that much...sheesh.  And my Ergo, I just had to have one but never could fathom spending over a hundred dollars on one.  The only reason I have one?  I found one at the thrift store for $8!! 

It was the same with cloth diapers--I went the inexpensive route at first, got some used fitteds and some covers, they worked just fine and kept Ingrid dry.  But it wasn't enough.  I had to get the newest FuzziBunz, in cute colors.  I had to try the Bum Genius, and even though I hated the velcro, I still ended up with seven of them!  They don't work any better than what I had, but I thought I had to have more. 

Isn't that what I'm trying not to do?  Aren't I trying to live with what I have and be happy with what I have?  Aren't I trying to teach Ingrid that it's what we do that makes us happy, not what we own?  But dammit, you see these glossy ads in magazines and think your life would be so much better if you just had a different diaper, a better wrap, another glass bottle with bpa free nipple.  Or that organic cotton whatever that costs five times more than I can afford.

What can you do, we live in a material based culture.  It's up to me to figure out that I can read the articles and enjoy them while ignoring the ads and knowing I don't have to have every little thing that's out there, it will not, in fact, make my life easier or my baby happier.  It's so easy to get sucked into it though!!   

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Not So Good Mom Day...

Actually it's been weeks since I've felt like a good mom but today was horrible.  And it's only 3pm.  I haven't been taking my meds lately with all the puking going on, so I'm on edge.  I know you're not supposed to just stop altogether taking them, you're supposed to ease off them, and I didn't.  So I have been really bitchy and yelly and just having no patience.  On top of being sick and exhausted and getting fatter every day.  No good.

Today was the wakeup call--again--that I need to refocus on my parenting skills.  I remember these blissful times of baking with Ingrid, letting her make a mess, walking at a snail's pace letting her take in every part of nature she wanted.  I remember crafting with her, reading to her, playing with her, and her being happy.  I haven't felt that way in a long time. 

Lately it has been yelling at her to move her ass up the stairs before she pees her pants again, or to get back in bed for the fifth time and just go to sleep already, or to put down that cherry she's smearing all over the couch.  Our walks are hurried because it's hot and I'm wanting to go lay on the couch again.  I grab her arm and probably hurt her and why?  Because I'm focused on my needs and what I want to do at that moment.  I want to get around the block in less than a half hour, so I grab her, tell her to walk, make her cry, and feel like shit.

Today she would not take a nap because she said she had to poop.  But that is a worn out stall tactic most days, so I told her to go back to bed.  She got her toys, I took them away, she got her books, I took them away.  It was an hour of me yelling at her to get back in bed and close her eyes and go to sleep.  She just WOULD NOT do it!!!  I almost lost it, I just wanted to scream (who am I kidding, I did scream...)  So one more time in her room yelling, she cried and then started saying "I sorry mama, I sorry!"  I broke down in tears and hugged her and let her get out of the bed.  She clearly was not going to nap, why fight it?  And wouldn't you know, five minutes later she's running to the bathroom needing to poo--she hadn't been stalling at all. 

But how am I supposed to know that????  It's the boy who cried wolf, completely!  She says it every day at naptime, every night at bedtime, and it's only true about 5% of the time! 

Anyway, I feel like shit for all the yelling, I feel like I stopped being an attached parent somewhere along the way.  Now that she's not so dependent on me I just let her go about her way, forgetting she still needs me to listen to her and that our relationship can only be happy if we are both involved in it.  Why can't I remember this?  Why do I let things get out of hand and then have to come to this realization every few months? 

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Feeling Okay.

The weather has been gorgeous the past couple days.  Today I finally had the strength to go outside and do something.  It's funny, I was so nauseated before but not throwing up, and now I'm throwing up but otherwise fine.  Which is better?  To me I guess this next stage is--throw up once in the morning, feel tons better, and go about my day.  Sorry, TMI, but there you go. 

Anyway, today was great, after I finally got my ass out of bed.  We had to go to the library so I threw on my tennis shoes and put Ingrid in the stroller and we walked the mile or so to the downtown library.  It's great to walk down Main Street and see all the outdoor cafes, everyone biking and enjoying the sun.  We got our new books and then went to get a sub for lunch.  After that we walked toward home.

On the way home I saw this enormous yard sale with loads of stuff, so I had to check it out.  Ingrid was drawn magically to the kiddie sized drum set and spent the majority of the time drumming on it while all the people there said oh, she sure does like that!  I think you should get it for her!  Yeah right, you want me to live with a 2 year old and drum kit??  Right.  I bypassed the drums and found a couple cool vintage sheets.  What more could I ask for from a sunny summery day?

We then walked home for naptime and now I'm contemplating what to do this afternoon.  I love feeling okay!  I know tomorrow morning I'll be puking again, but for now I feel alright and I can take Ingrid out to have fun instead of begging her to just go read her books or go in the playroom for awhile while mommy lays half dead on the couch.  Poor kid, she's really gonna get the shit end of this new baby stick, isn't she?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Making Babies is Hard Work!

I am about nine weeks along and the sickness is getting to me.  At first it was a little nausea, but if I ate it would go away.  Ginger chews would work well, as did donuts!  Now, however, it's just this sickness hanging around me all day.  I'm totally tired, unmotivated, don't want to move.  Poor Ingrid!

I've tried to keep busy, thinking if I just keep moving I'll distract myself.  It works sometimes, but today I got up ready to go go go and I puked.  And afterward could not move a muscle for two hours.  For real, I have to do three more weeks of this???

I hated being pregnant with Ingrid and swore up and down I'd never do it again.  Yet somehow these weeks at the beginning that go SO SLOWLY and are so uncomfortable were forgotten.  All I could remember was the cute little belly, the kicks, and the baby at the end.  These next three weeks cannot go fast enough!  Here I come, second trimester!

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Go over here and then come back and comment.  It's fun, I swear!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Quit Stalling!

We are trying very hard around here to help Ingrid go to bed with less stalling.  For the past few weeks it's been taking her an hour or so to fall asleep.  First it was that she wanted a drink.  Then when I realized she was just saying that, but not drinking when given her water bottle, she moved onto throwing her nuk on the floor and then calling "I can't find my nuk!"  After we stopped going in for that, it was that she "dropped" her doll, or that the glow worm needed batteries, or that she had to go to the bathroom.  It was one thing after another, with me putting her to bed and then every five minutes popping up and running in the room.  And getting more and more pissed as the time went on.

It all starts out so innocently, I just wanted to give my child what she needed before bed.  And then it grew so gradually into a big deal that one day I was blindsided by the fact my daughter had been manipulating me for weeks!  How did that happen??  However it happened, it's stopping.  NOW. 

Last night was my first trial of letting her go and not going in to give her anything.  Most of the time I'm sitting there wondering if I'm being a big meanie, maybe she really is thirsty, maybe she really does have to go to the bathroom.  But then I'd sit and listen to her and laugh--"I need my water bottle!  I need my water bottle!  I need to poo!  I need...my dog!  I need...I need...uh, my water bottle!"  It was making me laugh last night listening to her because she was just grasping at straws, what will make mama come back into my room to get me? 

She cried for a half hour on and off.  Sometimes screaming, sometimes really sounding pathetic and tugging at my heartstrings, and sometimes sounding like a maniac.  After a half hour I went in, told her it was time to go to sleep, and I left her.  She fell asleep about a minute later.  Instead of it taking over an hour to fall asleep, she fell asleep in a half hour.  Progress!  Tonight she's quiet, just talking to herself and not calling out for me, so we'll see.  Hopefully she's getting the picture that there is no more stalling to go to bed.  Hopefully.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Handmade Nation

There was a little gathering of crafty ladies at Blue House tonight to watch the documentary Handmade Nation.  It's funny I've never seen this, because it's from a lovely lady I know from Milwaukee!  But I had never seen it before, and when I dropped my goods off at Blue House today, Siobhan told me they were showing it.  Usually I am so tired by the end of dinner, I can't think of leaving the house and being coherent.  But I figured why not, it's a nice night out and Mama needs a break from the stress that is bedtime around here!!

I'm so glad I went!  It was about ten women, some sangria, beer, cheese, and a big tv playing a documentary about crafters, what could be better?  It was a little intimidating because everyone seemed to know each other already and they had already been doing things together for a few months it seems.  But I'm not one to be too shy, so I just jumped in and asked people's names and asked what things they've done and hopefully I'll get to know some people better.

It's funny, though.  I enjoy making my stuff, and I have to admit that when someone went to the shop part and saw the little baby slippers I'd made and oohed and aahhed over them, I felt pretty good to say yep, that's my stuff.  But I don't know that I'm into it enough to make it an actual factual business...Like there are tons of craft shows and other things going on, which sound fun, but I don't know.  I just don't ever have that motivation needed to continue on with things.  I like to blame it on Ingrid and the fact I have to do my sewing around her schedule, which is true to a point.  But I know I could be creating things in her down time, or nap time, or after bed, or really focus on the weekends when Brendan is home.  And I don't.  I go in spurts--I'll get all into it and make about 10 bibs and five blankets and then be done with it for weeks.  Or I'll try a new pattern and make 7 of the thing and then I never look at it again.  Is this normal or am I just lazy?? 

Whatever the case may be, it's nice that I can sell stuff on consignment and through etsy and have a reason to make things.  Sometimes you find an old Star Trek sheet and you just know a blanket has to be made from it, but really does your daughter need another handmade blanket?  No, she doesn't, but the blanket still has to be made!  This way at least I have an outlet for those urges!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Blue House Ann Arbor

Awhile back I got an email from a woman who was starting a cooperative craft center.  She was wondering if I'd be interested in selling some of my goods there, but since I thought we'd be moving I told her no thank you but good luck.  Then the other day Brendan and I were taking a walk in our new neighborhood and we passed this cutest building--an old blue house that had a sign out front saying it was an artists space.  I said hmmm, I wonder if that's the same lady that contacted me last fall?  Sure enough it was!

I went over to talk to her on Tuesday and it was so amazing!  The place is an old house, the front room has goods for sale from local artists.  Some photos, some jewelry, some sewn goods, a little of everything.  Then there's a sewing room, and upstairs are two studios.  They have classes and events, host birthday parties, and will be taking part in the local art fair this summer, which is a huge ordeal around here! 

And the best thing is, they want to sell my things!  I am so excited to be doing this, it's another way to get my stuff out there.  When we were moving and I had boxed up all my sewing stuff, I realized how much I love to sew.  I love to make things, and I love to sell them, just to know others like it, too.  But I'm not really interested in making a ton of money, just enough to support my fabric addiction!  And to be able to join a group of local artists and have the support of a community will be really nice, too. 

So, if you're in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area and need a bib, blanket, or baby shoes, be sure to stop by Blue House Ann Arbor

Friday, May 14, 2010

No Impact man

I just watched this documentary last night and it was wonderful!  A family in NY city decides to try to make no environmental impact for one year.  They give up cars and take to biking.  They give up elevators and take to the stairs.  They give up toilet paper, premade cleaning products, and washing machines.  They start composting and eating only local foods.  I never heard of it at the time, but I guess it was a big deal in New York, they were in the Times and on Good Morning America.  It was all new to me, though, and I loved watching it.

They got a lot of negative comments about what they were doing and it just amazes me how people think doing little things like using cloth instead of disposable anything, or making your own cleaning products, or buying local food, is so crazy.  To me it has become so common to use cloth wipes, rags instead of paper towels, and although I haven't done it in awhile, I used to make my own laundry detergent and cleaning products out of cheapness :)  And it's not hard!

The wife of this family was into reality tv, shopping, and eating meat.  By the end of the year, though, she was definitely turned on to the positives of the changes they'd made.  She no longer spent $950 dollars at one clothing store (??!!) and she gave up her coffee addiction (no coffee was grown in New York, therefore had to be nixed.)  There were wonderful scenes of the family stomping their laundry in the bath tub, and playing with their daughter, and eating by candlelight.  I was just so excited to see someone that had a ton of reservations about the project totally turn around and embrace things. 

Obviously not all was good.  They gave up electricity for six months and instead of a refrigerator used a pot in pot contraption that was supposed to work but didn't.  They were basically camping in their NY city apartment, as the wife said.  I'm sure there were times it sucked beyond belief and they probably wanted to go out and get fast food and not have to cook their root vegetables.  But like they said, they were going to the extreme to see what worked, what was possible, and what wasn't feasible.  They realized that it wasn't about giving things up but doing the things they wanted to do in a more sustainable way. 

It was really interesting to me because a lot of what they were doing reminded me of "olden times" for lack of a better term.  Before everything was processed and marketed, people used what they had to do what they needed.  When I was looking at making my own cleaning products everything I read was recipes from someone's grandma.  That's just how it was done.  You took some things you had in your pantry and you cleaned with them.  You drank water from the tap, you didn't buy plastic bottles of it.  You bought your food from local farms or markets, and didn't depend on having blueberries shipped in from Chile in the middle of the winter. 

I know that convenience is really nice sometimes.  I have been known to go for the easy way out many times.  But is it really worth it?  (The stupid thing about this is that I just bought a pack of disposable diapers for Ingrid yesterday after her cloth ones leaked through three nights in a row!  I guess some things are convenient, aren't they?  Sigh...)  For me the movie just drummed up ideas of what I was comfortable with and what I wasn't.  But it got me thinking, and that's the good thing.  I think more people need to think about what they are doing and see what they could maybe do better.

One thing I think I need to work on is the local eating.  Every year I want to do a CSA but every year it seems too expensive.  Every week I say I should go to the farmer's market and then realize I missed it the next day.  When I shop I should look for more locally grown things, and things with less packaging.  What do you think you could change about your habits? 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

We're On Little Sooti!

There's a great blog called Little Sooti that features fun and creative kid's rooms and birthday parties.  I sent in a link to my post about Ingrid's new room, and they featured it on their blog!  Go check it out!  And then check out all the other amazing things they feature on there, there are really some adorable ideas.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Peaceful New Home

So, a week later and we're settling in nicely!  Living room is painted (thanks for the kick in the butt, Heather!!) boxes are unpacked, even the playroom is set up.  The only thing needed is my sewing table set up (I need to get to Ikea and get some table legs) and pictures hung on the wall.  And can I say thank god we are here???

Number one, we are so close to things, it's awesome.  Brendan can bike to work, or if he needs a ride it's not a big deal.  Stores are close by.  Fun things are close by.  There are tons of new parks to check out. 

Number two, Ann Arbor is amazing.  All the taxis are Priuses.  They have a great recycling system, so you can put all numbers of recyclables in the bin instead of only #1 and #2.  And they have curbside compost bins!  Just like a trash bin, only you can put your fruit and veg scraps and lawn debris in there.  Then if you want, you can go get cheap mulch and compost for your garden from the recycle center.  How awesome is that?

Number three, because we are so close to things, Brendan is so much less stressed out.  Mornings are enjoying a cup of coffee and playing with Ingrid instead of rushing around to leave before traffic gets too bad.  Evenings he's home at a decent time, we get to eat dinner at a leisurely pace, and there's time afterward to go for a family walk instead of rushing to get Ingrid in bed.  It is so nice!

Number four, the house is full of good vibes.  Unlike the apartment that had noisy trashy neighbors, we have a real house, with lots of windows and sunlight coming through.  We have a backyard that Ingrid loves, and we can let the dog out without worrying about him.  Every day we say how much we love this place, and how we can't believe we lasted more than a year at the old apartment!  I feel so lucky to be in a great neighborhood instead of in trashville where we were before!

So basically, things are good here.  I'm loving life again, and I'm thankful that our move is over and we don't have to think about it again for another year.  And then hopefully we'll be able to settle somewhere for good!

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Lyndsey over at Motherhood Moments wrote this blog post about unschooling.  I am so inspired by it and had to write my own ideas down about it. 

My schooling was okay, there was nothing majorly wrong about it, but it left me uninspired and even though I could have gone to whatever college in Michigan I wanted to on a great scholarship, I didn't go to college.  I was burnt out on playing the game of school.  I was always getting negative comments on my report cards about bothering other kids who were still working.  I would whiz through whatever we were doing and I'd be bored, so I would try to help my friends along so they could be done, too.  Teachers didn't think oh here's an intelligent kid, they just said oh, here's a nuisance, we need to shut her up and slow her down.  So I began to think I was doing something wrong.  Teachers would tell me I was going too fast, I wasn't reading the directions clearly, I wasn't double checking my answers.  Yes, I was!  I was just really fast! 

And don't get me started about middle school!  As a girl it is hell.  Absolute pure hell.  I would not wish that on my daughter for anything.  The gossip, the dirty looks, the backstabbing.  I had a group of friends in 6th grade, one of whom was a neighbor girl I would play with often.  One day she decided she didn't like me, so she talked all the other kids into not liking me, either.  Suddenly I was left floating in a class with no friends and no idea why it had happened.  Luckily I was switched to another class and found girls I am still to this day friends with!  But how awful to go through that, right?? 

High school was not much better.  I was "good" at school because I would do the work, but I wasn't interested in any of it.  Most of the classes were spent trying to quiet people down, then teach a little, then make us regurgitate what we were told.  If you had a good memory, you were "smart."  If you didn't, then you weren't.  By my junior year I was over it.  I stopped playing the game, I stopped going to class, I was this close to dropping out.  Everyone thought I was on drugs, or hanging out with the wrong crowd, they never stopped to think that a 16 year old could just be sick of school and all the drama that went along with it!

One thing I remember is that older friends that had graduated would say stick with it, college is so much better!  You know why they thought it was better?  Because they had freedom to learn what they wanted, take classes they wanted, and people were there because they wanted to be there.  There are those classes with people that have to take a requirement, but most classes are filled with people who chose to be there because they wanted to learn that subject.  You know what that sounds like to me?  Homeschooling!  Why make my kid wait until she's burnt out with "normal" schooling?  Why not just teach her that way all along?

I remember our family friends switching their kids to a new charter school.  They went to an info night and when they got back with folders of the new curriculum, I was so jealous!  Sixth graders were expected to read the classics!  They got to take interesting science classes!  I said that if I had a chance to go to a school like that, I wouldn't have almost dropped out of school, I would have gone to college right away, I would have enjoyed learning.  I still remember that, and if I can't find a school like that for Ingrid, I don't want to send her anywhere.  She can stay home with me and read whatever books she likes, and we'll go to museums and movies and look stuff up online.  She can take music classes or dance classes or whatever she wants to do. 

Yesterday we were at the park and there were some older kids playing on the merry go round.  They were going a bit fast and Ingrid wanted to join in.  I thought for sure the girls would give her dirty looks and not let her play but right away they said HI!  Do you want to play with us?  We'll go slow, come on, let's play!  I was amazed, and completely happy.  Then I met their mom--she has seven kids and homeschools.  The kids aren't raised to see kids as younger and therefore inferior, they just see...kids.  That want to play.  How lovely!

This is a bit of a rambling post, but it's stuff that is on my mind so much.  Part of me wants to "get rid" of Ingrid at 5 so I can focus on sewing and stuff, but that's a small selfish part that comes out on the days she acts up and is a true 2 year old!  Another part wonders if she's learning enough social things, and if she'll be okay with other kids if she's not in a preschool or whatever.  Even though I know she's learning social skills from me, I wonder.  And she's just turning 2 so I have time to figure stuff out, but Lyndsey's post inspired me, so here you go!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Itching to Be Done

Living with half your life in boxes sure does suck.  I wanted to be prepared and have things boxed up well before the day we moved but I'm realizing now how much it wears on my nerves to want to do something and find the supplies are in a box. 

Mainly I'm talking about sewing.  First I was sick, so I didn't feel like doing anything anyway.  And then the etsy shop was super quiet, I made one sale the whole month of April.  I was pretty over the whole thing, thinking about not doing etsy anymore even!  Then I got home from the hospital to find three orders.  And in the past week I have had three different conversations about custom orders.  And I have been thinking of things I want to make for Ingrid's new room.  And I forgot about a birthday present owl I had to make and I packed the stuffing away! 

So, I'm itching to get sewing!  I want to make bunting for Ingrid's birthday party, something like this.  I love Candace's choices of fabric!  I also have some more motivation to make things for the shop.  And of course I have to outfit our new house with curtains and pillows!  So much I want to do and all my fabric and supplies are boxed up. 

You know what really bugs me is that we can get our keys tomorrow but President Obama is making a speech at the UofM commencement.  It's taking place at the stadium which is exactly one block away from our new house.  So...all the roads will be blocked off and there's no way I want to try to get through that traffic!!  I could be moving tomorrow, I could be getting things settled again, and instead I'm going to be stuck at home without Brendan (who will be in Chicago at a friend's wedding) wanting nothing more than to be getting into our stinkin' new house!! 

I am so impatient.  What's one more day?  I should quit my complaining and just go pack up the rest of the house.  Or play outside with Ingrid, it's supposed to be in the 70s today! 

Monday, April 26, 2010

Decorating Daydreams

We are moving one week from today!  I am so excited, I can't wait to be close to things again!  Yesterday for example, Brendan wanted to go get a suit for the wedding he's going to.  The shop we wanted to go to is a 20 minute drive from our current place.  But our new place?  A ten second drive!  Yay!

So, instead of focusing on how much stuff I still need to pack up, I'm imagining our new place and what I want to do with it.  I have Ingrid's room all planned out--her new bed, her bookshelf, and some throw pillows.  I found some fabric I think I need:
I want to make a small quilt for the bed, floor pillows, and curtains.  I think the walls are a creamy color, so hopefully I won't have to repaint.  I love to paint, but I'm getting sick of making a place my own and then having to move a year later...

The other place I have ideas for is the basement--our new playroom/sewing room!  We have a little Ikea couch with a red cover, I want to get a cushy rug to put in front of it, we have two red shelving units to put toys on, and then Ingrid has her kitchen set.  A friend has a bit of chalkboard paint leftover so we'll probably do a square of that on the wall, and have her little coloring table for an art corner.  And my sewing area!!  I finally get a chance to leave my sewing machine in one place!  And have a stand up ironing board that I don't have to move.  And all my fabric can be out and inspiring me, instead of being balled up in a linen closet.  Maybe this way I'll use the fabric I have and quit buying more.  ha!  I doubt it.

Yep, don't want to deal with packing, so I'll just keep on daydreaming.  I hate moving, I can't wait until we buy a house and won't have to uproot ourselves every year.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Hosptial Craziness.

Friday night I ended up in the hospital and I just got home yesterday.  It was completely unexpected and completely crazy!

I was sick all last week with a sore throat, swollen glands, I couldn't swallow.  It sucked.  But I've had that before, it goes away, life goes on.  However, this time it wasn't going away.  Five days of not being able to eat or drink anything and I was at the end of my rope.  So, Brendan drove me to the ER when he got home from work Friday night. 

I felt like they were going to laugh at me and just tell me I had a sore throat and to deal with it, but right away the triage nurse was concerned and called a doctor to come see me.  He threw around some terms and said get her an IV right away and get her to a bed.  So I was brought back to a bed, put on a gown, and given some fluids by IV.  Doctors came in, nurses bustled around, and they all seemed really concerned.  I ended up getting a CT scan of my head and throat so they could see where the infection was and what was going on.

After the scan they made the diagnosis that I had an infected thyroglossal duct cyst.  Apparently when the thyroid is forming in utero, it starts at the back of the mouth and travels down to where it will stay in the throat.  Then the track disappears and everything's normal.  Unless the track doesn't disappear, in which case it forms a cyst which can and will become infected.  So I found out at age 33 I have a birth defect!  It was so crazy to me, because I have had this happen a number of times in the past 15 years but no one ever knew what caused it.  I was just relieved to finally know what the hell was going on!

They wanted to admit me but found out my insurance wouldn't cover a stay at that hospital, so I had to be transported by ambulance to the other local hospital.  Right beforehand the nurse insisted I take some morphine to help with the pain.  So I was totally drugged up, riding around in an ambulance on a Friday night.  Not what I had planned for at all!

At the other hospital they pumped me full of steroids to take down the neck swelling, and antibiotics.  And more drugs.  I have to say, I can see how people could become addicted to pain meds, they make you feel all nice and warm and dozy!  I slept awhile, finally got a hold of Brendan, who had taken Ingrid home by then to put her to bed, and in the morning I was moved to a room.  I was admitted into the hospital and stayed for 24 hours, being given antibiotics and steroids. 

I felt so much better after a few hours!!  I could finally swallow, which meant I could finally eat after five or so days of eating yogurt.  I had more energy, I got some sleep, I was ready to go home.  Brendan took Ingrid to come see me and it was so hard to hear her yelling "I need my mama!!" as they left the room to go home.  I couldn't take it, I wanted to be home.  So they let me go Sunday afternoon.  I went home, felt like crap, and by the time I woke up Monday morning I was completely swollen and unable to swallow.  Again.  So I had to go to the hospital.  Again.

I got to a room, got hooked up to more IVs, more antibiotics, more doctors coming in asking me questions.  I met with some Ear Nose and Throat doctors and we scheduled a surgery for the end of May.  I went back to the room, had to listen to my 80 yr old roommate tell anyone and everyone that she just had an enema, and tried to rest.  This time I couldn't so well.  I just kept thinking of Ingrid and how sad she was.  My mom came to take care of her and she said Ingrid just kept saying "Mama's at the hospital, mama's sick.  Mama go to the doctor."  For some reason, that just killed me. 

With another 24 hours of antibiotics I felt much better.  I got released yesterday afternoon and I am feeling okay.  Weak, still have a sore throat, and I got a cold on top of all this!!  But better.  On the mend.  And I'm home, thank god.  I got to sleep in my own bed last night, it was amazing.

Now, though, I have so much on my mind.  We are moving in a week and a half, so I have to pack up the house.  After we move we obviously have to then unpack at the new house.  Then Ingrid's birthday is in May, so we're having a party for her.  But somewhere in there they want me to have surgery and a 2 week recovery period.  I am completely stressing thinking about all the stuff that needs to happen in the next month!  No fun.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Guess What??

Chicken Butt!

Haha, we got a book from the library last week called Chicken Butt.  Ingrid thinks it's funny to say "You know what?  heehee, chickbutt!"  I love toddlers' senses of humor.

But no, seriously, the guess what is for this--we're ready to try for #2!!  This weekend, the weekend of crabiness and yelling, we actually had a conversation about babies.  Brendan always thinks we should wait.  With Ingrid he wanted to wait until he was done with school, which I am so glad I would not agree to, seeing as Ingrid was almost one by the time he was actually done.  This time he wanted to wait until he got a job.  I said cool, it'll be this spring.  Then he decided to stay at his job another year, so I figured we could start now.  He kept saying later, later, in the fall.  Why?  Who knows. 

And I am always the one that says no, let's just go for it now.  Especially after having Ingrid at the time we did.  We thought Brendan would have one year of grad school left, and that it would take six months or so for me to get pregnant.  I have PCOS so I thought it would take forever.  With that thinking, we started trying the summer before Brendan's last year of school.  I got pregnant on the first try, and he had to stay in school an extra semester.  We lived with his parents and it was crazy, but you know what?  I wouldn't change it.  We had a great support system for the first few months, it made us really ready to move on from Milwaukee and try something new, and I honestly don't know how it would've been to be in our own place with a newborn.  It was nice to have his parents pop in upstairs every once in awhile.

So now, of course I was thinking the day he figured he'd stay another year that we could start trying for baby #2.  You know, I'll get pregnant this spring, have a baby in late winter, and then we can move with a 2 1/2 year old and a newborn next spring.  Instead of having a 2 1/2 year old and being insanely hugely pregnant...And saying that made Brendan realize, once again, that I'm right :)  So we're trying.  Hooray!

It's funny how much Ingrid picks up on things.  Every time we see a baby I say oh, don't you want a baby?  You could be a big sister!  You could be my helper and sing to the baby!  So after her nap today she says "Mama, I need to be a big sister.  I need to sing Rockabye Baby to the baby."  Ha!  I'm totally brainwashing my child into thinking she needs a sibling.  Hopefully she'll still feel that way if we get one!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Good Riddance, Crabby Weekend!

Man, is there something in the air?  Or perhaps our water?  This weekend was awful, both Brendan and I were so crabby.  This may or may not have led to Ingrid being equally crabby, which in turn made us both more crabby.  Nice little circle of events, no?

Honestly I can't even remember what set me off, but I was so pissy and then Ingrid says "I sorry, Mama" and I almost started crying.  She takes it so personally when we get yelly, and now that she can say things like she's sorry it's making me realize how much we have to try to talk like adults and be at least civil to each other. 

It's hard to be an adult.  At one point I let the sarcasm flow and my voice got louder and louder, and then Ingrid looked over at me and it just broke my heart.  I don't want to teach her to be like that.  One of the things I've always prided myself on is that I like to settle things in an adult manner, with conversations and give and take.  No petty yelling and swearing and throwing things, no real fighting, just issues and trying to talk through them.  This weekend I forgot about all that...

So my goal for this week is to try and return to being a nicer mom, a nicer wife, someone people would want to live with.  No more rolling eyes (well, I'll try anyway) no more getting mad that things weren't done my way.  I actually yelled at Brendan for running the dishwasher without putting enough dishes in it.  He said I was just trying to help and I got mad that he didn't help in the right way.  I still think it was silly to run it, but I certainly didn't have to yell at him. 

Back to being calm, gentle, nurturing.  I somehow have lost my way with that, but hopefully I can get back on track.  Tomorrow we're going to take a picnic by the lake, and bake bread, and maybe try to sew a dress for a friend's birthday.  Things are looking up! 

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

More TMI, Beware: Family Cloth

As I've said before, I've kinda gone a little crunchy.  Cloth diapers, cloth pads, cloth napkins, etc etc.  The only thing I was still waiting on was using family cloth.  If you're unaware of this, it's using cloth wipes instead of TP.  From what I've been able to find online, people are pretty grossed out by this.  I believe I read someone's comment calling whoever did this an environazi.  However, when I heard about it, I was open to the idea.  But for whatever reason, it's been months and months and I still was using TP. 

Cut to last week when we ran out.  I hate running out of TP!  Sitting there searching the nearby area for anything to use, wondering if your two year old will understand if you tell her to get mommy some TP from the other bathroom.  And I did what I had to do, I used a washcloth.  I survived.  And it got me thinking about family cloth again and how much TP we go through, and how it's really the last of the paper products we still use in our house. 

So, yesterday I rummaged through my scrap box, found some flannel, and went to work.  I came up with 35 5"x5" squares, pinked the edges, and sewed two pieces together.  I have to say, they were pretty cute and inviting right away.  Ingrid wanted to go potty three times in an hour just to be able to use a new wipe.  Hmmm, maybe these would catch on as potty learning tools? 

We put the wipes in a little box on the counter, moved the diaper bin into the bathroom, and viola!  We are the proud new users of family cloth.  My husband came home and saw me making more, and I was just gushing about how proud I was of myself for doing this.  He kind of gave me a look and shrugged.  Whatever, my wife is going crazy again...But he used them when he took Ingrid to the bathroom, that's all I care about. 

So there you go, more personal information about our household practices that you probably never wanted to know.  I did warn you, though.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Ann Arbor it is.

We got the apartment in Ann Arbor, the side by side duplex (or semiattached home, depending on where you're from!)  It's perfect for us, and I'm so excited to move there.  We will have a little yard, a basement that I'm envisioning using as a play/sewing room, hardwood floors, which means my vaccuum can be stored away and I won't ever have to use it!!  Hooray! 

This place is right down the road from the University of Michigan football stadium.  So, if you know anything about Big Ten football, it's pretty huge.  Which means we'll probably have lots of traffic, noise and other crazy things on game day.  But...it's only a few days out of the year.  And it could be kinda fun.  Right? 

We are going to be so close to things, I just can't wait.  I already have started decorating the place in my head.  We can paint and of course I'll sew up some new curtains and pillows.  I'm ignoring the fact I have to still pack up my whole house and figure out a way to move it all there, I'm just focusing on the fun stuff after we're in :) 

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Moving Time!

Not so fast, Amber!  We haven't found a new place yet.  BUT, we did just hand in our official notice that we're moving at the end of the month.  Hooray!  So long, apartment complex living, with your smelly hallways, your roaring showers, your washing machine in the upstairs apartment that is always off balance as it's being run at 11pm. 

So far we have found two places that seem okay.  One is by the university and is a side by side duplex, which I've lived in before.  Shared walls but it's only on the side of the bathroom and the stairs.  And it has a yard!  And hardwood floors!  And Brendan could be home by 5:30pm!  The other is a huge house a block away from our friends.  It has three bedrooms, a yard, is in a cute little small town where I could walk everywhere and barely need a car anyway.  Brendan would still have to commute, though, and heating an old house like that will really add to our expenses.  The guy hasn't even gotten back to me though, so I shouldn't be counting on that house being available anyway!

It's exciting to think of moving and setting up house in a new place.  Not exactly what I'd been planning on, staying here in Michigan, but it's not bad.  I really do like my friends and if we are in a better place to live, I know I will be able to enjoy myself here.  Especially during the summer, I'm imagining walks in the park, barbeques in the backyard, and walking everywhere I can.  Because I will be able to walk places, unlike here where there's a ghetto Domino's pizza, a carwash, or a rundown gas station in walking distance. 

So long, Ypsilanti, I won't miss you.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

We're Staying?

Brendan came home last night and told me he's staying at his job for another year.  Which is nice, I guess, but now we're in limbo for one more freakin' year!  The good news is that we don't have to worry about where we'll be this summer, and we are looking for a new place to live that is NOT in Ypsilanti.  We hate it here where we are, it's trashy and far away from everything and every time someone in our building takes a shower you can't hear anything above the roar of the water.  So...onto a new place.

You know how hard it is to find an okay place here for less than $1000 a month???  Seriously, people, we're in Michigan, not a big city!  What's with all the houses being $3000 a month to rent?  We found a couple prospects on craigslist last night, so we'll see if we hear back from anyone.  Hopefully we will, because we're giving our notice tomorrow, giving us exactly one month to find somewhere new to live!  Nothing like a little pressure, huh? 

So, today is all about paying bills, figuring out money for moving, finding boxes, and starting to pack!!  Unfortunately that means I'll be finding things to donate to Salvation Army and then we'll go drop it off and end up buying a couple bags of different crap!  I just love thrifting.