Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Tired of everyone elses spring cleaning posts so I will post my own.

Everyone else's cleaning posts had pictures of lemons so mine will also. YAY!

There are some things that the modern world improves upon. Putting fiber into fruit loops is NOT one of these things. Thanks a heap Kelloggs. Also mopping. I bought a steam mop a few months ago because so many of my pals GREATLY ESTEEMED it. They should not have done that. Disappointment. Is there anything better for cleaning a floor than my microfiber cloth and spray bottle full of vinegar...NAY! I just cleaned my floor to within an inch of its life! Some people say, "getting down on your knees to clean the floor? Foolishness!" And to them I say, "Damn, Americans really ARE as lazy as everyone thinks." Seriously people. It takes less time than the steam mop and the results are not to be compared. So, mopping innovations ended at the invention (discovery?) of vinegar. The end. Now Blogging world, please enthrall me something other than cleaning posts! Here are some gratuitous clean inspiring pictures:

Friday, March 23, 2012

March, You Done Me Wrong.

It's March, My Peeps! Obviously. I probably should have started with, "March is almost over, My Peeps." But that's a little lengthy, I think you'll agree. The last frost date for our homestead is march 3rd-6th. Not so this year. Ho ho, what a tease you are, Spring Time. And by "tease" I mean, "tomato plant killing wretch." Seriously. What gives? 8 of my best starts...down the drain. Also snails have been a problem for the first time ever. When I find them they are all given a quick death by pecking. And I relish it. This is getting a bit dark...

It snowed in the mountains last weekend so we drove like 20 minutes down the freeway and were greatly rewarded. Jonas has been begging to go to the snow for a LOOOOONG time. He was not disappointed.

So, it is hard times in the garden. Hard times indeed. Not in a Charles Dickens/child labor/endless woe sort of way though. More like a nothing is sprouting like it should/frost is killing with reckless abandon/and also there are snails sort of way. Sooo...perspective I guess. But I refuse to plant any more sacrificial offerings to the frost gods...thusly we will be waiting for april.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Doldrums Be Gone

What ho, gentle reader! We have been crazy busy. Two kids. It is quite different, am I right? But hopefully this post will not disappoint. The summer garden is in the works but there will be no pictures of that today because, well, it's just gorgeous black mulchy goodness with seedlings too tiny to make out. The one pretty area of our garden currently is the rainbow chard growing along the perimeter of the chicken run, but two of the chickens escaped yesterday and ate many of the chard plants to bits and sat on the rest, so it'll be needing some time to recover. Those chickens, how they loveth their chard. Our winter garden did not amount to much. The lettuce never took off due to wonky weather, though we did get a fair amount of peas. Nothing to write home about. We spent most of our winter keeping the doldrums at bay with kid activities. There was much enjoying, ya'll. Behold!
We made sidewalk paint. Because we live in Southern California and can do awesome stuff like that in the winter. Conversely our gas prices...they art the highest in the country. So there are tradeoffs to be sure. To make sidewalk paint mix a halfish cup of cornstarch with a halfish cup of water (clearly the measurements are SUPER important) and divide between muffin tin concavities. Add food coloring. This stuff is the business you guys. Seriously.
Don't let the smile fool you, see the red eyes? It's from the screaming, which is how the wee-est one prefers to spend most of her time. She is quite particular. Ferberizing has grossly improved her mood...and thusly my mood.
On a rainy day we made car tracks out of painters tape and built houses and buildings out of every block we own. Twas fun, indeed.
Bubble snakes! There was a week in like...January? Maybe? When we went crazy with bubbles. Bubble snakes are really neat. You Cut off the bottom of a water bottle, attach a washcloth over the opening with a rubber band, dip the bottom in bubble solution and blow into the drinking end. Also, the business, you guys.
Caroline received this sweater for Christmas from Grandma and Grandpa. She wore it to church one Sunday and people just couldn't stop laughing at her. But really, can you blame them? Oh the pointy-hattedness! It is too much. Check out the clenched fists and her pissed-as-hale expression. She is not one to tolerate mockery, no matter how adorable.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Homemade Baby Wipes- The Smart Person's Version -and also some stuff about beets.

Hello blog followers. What a relaxing weekend we've had. However relaxing weekends make for busy mondays. What a crazy cluttered house we now have. Caroline refuses to sleep without being held. She's been kind of a teething beast lately. So the housework waits and I guess I'll just have to snuggle her while blogging. What torture.

Meanwhile Jonas has books to put him to sleep.

I thought about doing a cloth wipes solution post but since this site just covers it so well I'll direct you there instead. I like the castille solution recipe. Target even sells Bronners soap now so there are no excuses.

While researching cloth wipes and how to make them I found a lot of intense multiple layered/topstitched/fancy pants homemade wipes tutorials. No thanks. Have I mentioned that the pregnancy was taxing? I think so. I was not up for that. So what I did was cut up an old flannel receiving blanket (with which we were overrun) into 16 squares and serged the sides. (I do not have a serger so when I say serged I mean I used some serge-like stitch that my machine has. And when that became too time and thread consuming I switched to just zig-zagging around the square twice. I am nothing if not efficient.) The cloth wipes work very well and hold up great in the wash. This is the way to go. Do not waste your time with all of that topstitching nonsense. Old baby washcloths also work great. Don't over-think it. Why people feel they need some fleece/flannel/hemp monstrosity to clean a baby butt is beyond me.

I should also mention that we have two spray bottles, one with the solution and one with water. Spray the butt with the solution, wipe, spray with water, wipe, done. This is my method. Others prefer just soaking the wipes in the solution and leaving them in a wipes container. Do what you want. As long as you use the wipes within a week you should be safe from funkiness. I also recommend using essential oils that have antibacterial properties like tea tree and lavender oil to further quell any of the aforementioned...funkiness.

What else is new you ask? I've discovered how wonderful raw beets are in smoothies. It's also fun to juice them. Yesterday morning I juiced some beets and found Jonas licking the juicer spout after I'd moved on to blending. Yum! My father-in-law (who is often dubious of the things I eat) saw the smoothies and said, "so you've just started drinking blood then, huh?" Yep.
I'm excited to go buy some beet seeds this afternoon and plant them. How fortuitous that they are in season.

Friday, September 30, 2011

My Life: Be Jealous.

I'm alive! It's the truth. Though just barely (no not really, I'm fine). Since having Caroline my life has not been the picture of health that I wish it to be. I wound up in the emergency room a while ago with bad chest pains. It wasn't great. They immediately ruled out any sort of heart problems rather quickly, which was good. But it took the doctors another 10 or so hours + a switch in hospitals + x-rays + blood tests + a cat scan to rule out a blood clot in my lung. That was terrifying. Every person I saw kept reminding me that it "could be fatal." Thanks Hospital staff! Like this stabbing pain in my chest just isn't terrifying enough. They were great though.

We took Caroline to the hospital with us since she refuses to take any sort of bottle. And that was all I could think about the entire time: Caroline won't take a bottle! What is Greg going to do?! Greg, promise me that if I die you'll make your mom retire and watch the kids! I will not have my children raised in daycare! I used to work in daycare! Some of those people are monsters! was a fun day for Greg too.

So what DID I end up having? PLEURISY! And no, not the lung-filled-with-blood-and-fluid kind, just your simple inflamed lung kind. Thats me. Keeping up the tradition of contracting old people diseases while still in my twenties. I normally enjoy great health with random bouts of afflictions normally reserved for the 50 and up set. I'm looking at you Shingles.

So what else have I been doing lately besides not blogging and resting my old lady lungs? Well...

-Making myself an accidental super glue glove while attempting to glue part of a kitchen drawer back together. Seriously my hand was covered in super glue. I'd be lying if I said it didn't have it's benefits.

-Playing hangman. Jonas's favorite new game. Meanwhile trying to stave off his incessant questioning about why the game ends in a person hanging. " just means you lost. Pick another letter."

- Planning ways to keep Jonas entertained (see above). Two years before this kid can start kindergarten and he can read, do simple math, and recognize each individual state by shape alone. A few weeks ago I awoke to him teaching himself how to read the names of the states by cross-referencing a US placemat and a 50 Great States book from the dollar section at target. He's pretty much a genius. I am learning so much from him! Did you know that Delaware was the first state? (You did? Well I didn't! Thanks a lot Highlands Elementary School.) I told Greg I plan on getting Jonas a bunch of anatomy books from the library. We could have a little Doogie Howser on our hands people! A LITTLE DOOGIE HOWSER! I think we can all agree that this is very exciting and likely. (sarcasm).

- Feeding the She-Hulk...though perhaps string bean is a better nickname since she's not so much husky as she is long. FYI: Yankee Doodle is her actual nickname. Anyway...she literally eats every hour on the hour some days (and nights). Meanwhile women I associate with talk about stretching their babies eating schedules to three hours and four hours. I'm against schedules for wee babies. They're hungry! Let them eat! ...This may be why I consistently produce chunky babies.

-House shopping! We're still in the super fun stage of finalizing our loan and looking at cute houses. So I'm pretty excited. Though I've had to give up on the dream home to beat all dream homes so everything else will inevitably come in a sad, sad second best. It was beautiful. On 16 acres. COMPLETELY off the grid. We could get a cow! It had a creek running through it. A CREEK! Sadly the creek was part of the downfall. The house was down a long dirt road...the creek ran through part of the road...if it rained the Mr wouldn't be able to get to work...sadness now consumes my every waking moment. Not really. We're house shopping! And the house that is right for us is bound to come our way. I can feel it! Meanwhile I will dream of retiring to the dream home to beat all dream homes. A CREEK!

I realized yesterday that it's been a year since we started trying for a baby. How quickly time flies. Man alive did that pregnancy do a number on me! Every day I feel a little bit more like my old self. Jonas and I have started planting the winter garden. We make all of our bread again. Some of the wash gets hung on the line to dry (mind you not all, I have a three month old you know!). We've started using cloth wipes in addition to cloth diapers. So easy! Why didn't I do this with Jonas? We're back to green smoothies for breakfast. We walk places. We do pilates. I've discovered the many virtues of Bon-ami cleanser. So yeah. Life is getting back to normal and it feels amazing! Congratulations on making it to the end of this super-post.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The one where I complain about my new, wonderful life.

I've titled this picture, "Baby with finger mustache." And as you can probably already tell this isn't go to be a REAL blog post...just me rambling...yet again. Holla!

Holy crap having two kids is hard. It really makes you start to question the sanity of people with three, four, etc. AND I'M GOOD WITH KIDS! I remind myself daily that it'll get better. Someday the laundry will be done. Someday I won't have a tiny screaming person attached to my boob every second of every day...and I'll miss the hell out of it. But right now all I can think about is how nothing seems to be getting done. Jonas has suddenly turned into a crazy person. His new favorite phrase is, "I don't care." And he's suddenly decided to start wetting the bed every.single.night. Oh, and totally peeing his pants in the middle of Barnes and Noble. Awesome! Here's to never cleaning out the car and thus being able to find a wrinkly pair of brown pants for your kid to wear into target so you can buy infant tylenol because your hulk-ette is already teething! Yay!!! What happened to my sweet little three year old boy? He broke a lamp the other day...then threw a hotwheels at my head...then dropped a bunch of rags in the toilet. I get it. Kids act out. But I miss being able to make juice and muffins every morning and spend the day hanging the wash on the line and reading picture books. I'm just sayin'.

On top of everything we're also having our roof completely re-done. It's super fun. Caroline really loves the loud banging. I'm pretty sure the workers think I'm a child abuser based on Jonas's recent penchant for unprovoked, blood-curdling screaming. Oh, and they've seen my boob at least three times now while walking past the sliding glass door, the one with the broken blinds, because as I mentioned earlier...the wee one feeds constantly. How I love that adorable pig-child. Seriously she's cute. Though I'll probably think otherwise tonight at two, when all she wants to do is party.

In other news the chickens started laying eggs. Also, I've started doing Zumba in an attempt to get rid of this baby sag. Though the amount of chocolate I consume these days surely negates such attempts. I bought a bunch of new clothes at the thrift store the other day...because nothing fits. SURPRISE! The newer, bigger clothes don't fit either! What the crap? I sat down and cried...this was also the day Jonas started melting down. Coincidentally ALSO the day the hubs was at comi-con...Boy did he come home to a barrel of laughs! We had egg sandwiches for dinner and I've taken to wearing elastic waist skirts. How's your life lately?

Friday, July 1, 2011

Caroline Camellia

So after 36 hours of hard labor -no joke- Thirty.Six.Hours. That's what I get for insisting on a VBAC. I'll be honest and admit that at one point I told the nurse, "screw it, let's just do a c-section." BUT! I said that because, 1: I had been in labor for a really long time. and 2: Because the best doctor ever was going to be leaving soon and the doctor from hell was going to be replacing him and I'd be damned if that woman had anything to do with the arrival of my child. Seriously, she was evil. She yelled at me, I yelled at her, nurses yelled. It was a super pleasant birthing experience. But thankfully, after hearing the story from one of our nurses the best doctor ever agreed to stay late and deliver our baby no matter what. See what I mean? Best doctor ever! If it wasn't for him I wouldn't have gotten the VBAC I was hoping for. Anyway...don't I look wonderful? This picture was taken around hour 32 or so.

Our tiny girl is here! The nurse's first words upon her arrival were, "wow she has a lot of hair on her lower back! Luckily it's blonde!" How lovely. Also, it's not blonde, it's brown. Here's hoping it falls out!!!

And by "tiny girl" I mean, huge girl. I guess the Mr and I only make one type of baby. Slightly smaller than her brother, Caroline weighed in at 9 lbs 3 ounces and 22 and a half inches long. The longest baby our nurse had ever measured. We heard someone exclaim from the hallway, "that's almost two feet long!" Yep, that's our baby.

At first her face was quite swollen, and she looked identical to Jonas when he was born.

But now that she has recovered from being born she's starting to look like her own little person. Though she still looks a lot like Jonas...and just like my little sister Kellie, when she makes her grumpy face.

She, not unlike Jonas, skipped the newborn phase and went straight to 3 month old. So many cute little newborn outfits went completely to waste. Here she is in her 3-6 month clothes.

Jonas absolutely loves her! While riding up in the elevator to see her in the hospital he said to Greg, "I think she will be sooo sweet." He was right. When she cries he's quick to respond by patting her and saying, "Oh you poor little baby." Who knows where he got that one. Another phrase he uses at least daily is, "look at how tiny her little booty is!" So complimentary.

Now we're all just relaxing at home. Enjoying the Mr's paternity leave and eating my weight in food every day. Because guess what? I CAN EAT AGAIN! and it is glorious. Jonas asks me every day when I will be skinny again. The other night at dinner he announced excitedly, "you're skinny now mom!" Then amended his statement to, "well not that part (motioning towards my stomach) but your feet are skinny...just your feet...and your toes." I'll take what I can get.

The nurses and everyone involved in Caroline's arrival were WONDERFUL!!! With the exception of Satan Doctor, mentioned earlier. Caroline's full name is Caroline Camellia. Camellia like the flower. Her middle name was decided on in the hospital at the last minute, but after two weeks (yeah did I mention she's two weeks old already?!) I still like the name so it worked out. She had her two week appointment yesterday and has exceeded her birthweight by 9 ounces so she's well on her way to being a chunk like her brother was. Better start building up the arm muscle!

P.S. Remember how I thought I'd have tons of energy and time to do things after the baby arrived? Well I wasn't completely crazy. Jonas and I planted a late summer garden earlier this week!!! Hooray!!! Now if the tomatoes could just ripen before it gets too cold.