Sunday, September 15, 2013

Twice the Speed of Life

Ever feel like life is happening all around you and you are just struggling to hang on and keep up?  That's how I feel right now.  More often than not I am feeling like I am knees buckled, white knuckled, holdin' on tight, traveling at twice the speed of life (Yea, yea, yeah, yeah....)

And to be quite honest, I don't like it.  We've always said we want to be committed to simplicity in our family.  And in one sense our move to Rock Hill has emboidied this goal well.  Our church is less than 1/4 mile from our house (also where Chris has an office), campus is a mile from our house, and my new job is 2 miles from the house.  We work and play primarily within 5 miles of our home- it is wonderful.  However, on the other hand we are learning that in order to protect "family time" we are going to have to be better about saying no as well as give some things up.  We can't do it all.  A lot of things are fun and good, but we have to evaluate each opportunity in relation to our priorities- which are first of all God, second of all our marriage, and third our family and children.

Notice what is not in that list (that easily become priorites for me)- having a clean house, having my cloth diapers washed and stuffed, meal planning, cooking a fresh-from sctrach meal each night (of course with organic vegetables), oh and the blog.  Yep, all things I've had to take a step back from and realize how they are in and of themselves good and fun, but I'm not super mom and I can't do it all.

Last week I found myself getting frustrated with Chris because I was wanting to write a blog post (which by the way I feel like I have tons of good ideas for but just not enough time to execute) after I got the kids down and dinner cleaned up.  He was out with students for the evening, but ended up geting home earlier than anticipated.  I should have been happy to see and spend time with my husband.  Yet, I found myself frustrated (at him) because I was wanting to finish said blog post which I had no chance to do earlier in the day, or the day before, or the day before that- and he was wanting to hangout.  That's when I realized I needed to take a break.
Life is busy- probably twice the speed it should be.  I have a 25 month old and a 6 month old- they require A LOT of time and attention.  People say that it gets easier, but honestly right now I feel like we are in the trenches.  AND I am starting a new job this week- so schedules are about to get even crazier.

I'm having to learn to let some things go.  I can't have it all and do it all.  I just can't.  So we are stepping back from several things in order re-prioritize each other and our kids.  That means I won't be blogging as much and I won't be co-hosting this hop.  (Which by the way has some exciting changes coming up!!!)  I would love to when I can, but I feel like it has become more of a burden lately and taking away from my actual relationships that I have made covenantal commitments to.

Do you struggle with time management and finding quality time to spend with your spouse and children?  How do you juggle it all?  Is it just me or does blogging as an outlet sometimes become more of a burden at times?

Mommy Mondays


Due to the recent increase in other blogs having Mommy Mondays Hops, we have decided to make a few changes around here!  First of all, we are changing the hop's name to "Time for Mom" with the tag line "Share and Connect Every Tuesday."  We also have a fabulous, awesome new button, which we will share with you guys next week! (If you're on our email list or like us on Facebook you will get a sneak peek at the new button!)

As you can see, the other big change is that we are moving the hop to Tuesdays!

The idea of the hop is staying the same, share anything you want about being a mom, parenting, family, your kids, crafts for kids, recipes for kids etc!

New name, new day, same great hop!


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Homemade Baby Wipes

There's nothing wrong with commercial baby wipes, but sometimes I just like to make my own.  I like to know exactly what ingredients are in them AND they're cheap!  Can't beat that!

All you need are:
Roll of Bounty Paper Towels * (we prefer the regular roll- not select a size)
Baby Wash
Baby Oil
Container to store them in  (I just happened upon this OXO container at Target a year and a half ago or so)

1. Cut your roll of paper towels in half.  (This takes some sawing and a little bit of muscle)

2. Mix 2 cups of water, 1 1/2 Tbls baby wash and 1 Tbls of baby oil in storage container

3. Add paper towels

4. Cover and turn upside down to allow water mixture to soak paper towels

5. Leave upside down until thoroughly soaked.  (I have no idea how long this takes.  I normally make my in the evening and leave them overnight.  Although I am sure it doesn't really take this long)

6. Turn over and pull out paper towel roll  (It easily comes right out)

7.  Begin pulling your new wipes from the middle of the roll.  

Voila!  Homemade baby wipes!

I've been making these wipes for over a year now- probably close to two years, and we love them!  That's not to say I never use commercial wipes- I do.  Costco brand wipes are always at our disposable, but I prefer these if I have them made.

*We started out using the select-a-size paper towels and my husband just thought that they weren't big enough to get some of the dirty jobs done, so now we use standard size paper towel rolls.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Cloth Diapering for Two

Cloth Diapering for two = Double the laundry.  We had a great stash of cloth diapers for Phoebe (that were given as a shower gift), but only received one more diaper at a shower for Haddie Grace.  So we've been cloth diapering two with a cloth diaper stash for one.  But you know what, we are making it work.  We have 18 diapers, so in order to exclusively cloth diaper it means that I have to wash them every day.  Phoebe goes through about six in a day and Haddie Grace goes through maybe 8-10.

There are lots of different brands and types of diapers out there.  After doing some research, we choose to  use bumGenius One-Size Cloth Diapers.  The snaps allow you to change the size of the diaper to fit babies from 7-35lbs.  So I use the same diapers for both babies and just adjust the size by the snaps for each child.

Go back here to read more about our decision to cloth diaper and how we handled it with just one baby.
What does all this mean with two children in diapers?  It means I don't exclusively cloth diaper anymore.  I am normally pretty good about getting the diapers washed and stuffed every day or every other day, but if I miss a day and have to put them in disposables, I don't worry about.  Let's face it, having two kids under two is busy and you don't always have time to wash and stuff diapers.  We choose to cloth diaper mainly to save money on diapers, but also to reduce landfill waste. So I figure whenever we can use the cloth we are saving money, and when we use disposables, I don't feel bad about it.

With one baby I did exclusively cloth diaper.  I had no problems using the cloth diapers when we were out and about.  I would just toss the dirty diapers in a wet bag and we were good to go.  I had no problems with Phoebe's diapers leaking.  When she started sleeping through the night and drinking more, I used hemp inserts to absorb the extra urine.  In fact at two years old she still sleeps overnight in a cloth diaper.  Haddie Grace, however, is another story.  She started rolling over and sleeping on her belly when she was three months old and I started having problems with leaking overnight and during naps that the hemp liners did not solve.  I guess she just pees more?  I have no idea, but I do put her in disposables for naps and overnight now.

We recently were given this bumGenius poop sprayer as a gift and let me tell you- it is AWESOME. (Thanks Lesley!)  It has transformed the way we handle diaper doodie.  It is certainly not a necessity to cloth diaper, but it does make life a little easier when those messy doodies explode beyond the confines of the diaper liner...
So what does cloth diapering for two look like?  More laundry and more dirty diapers.  It certainly is more work, but it is do-able.  Don't be discouraged!

Mommy Mondays


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

{WIWW} Job Interview

I've been looking and applying for jobs since before we moved.  (I know who looks for jobs when they have a 6 week old?)  After multiple frustrations and just not hearing anything back, I was starting to get a little anxious.  But in God's perfect timing (as all things are) I heard back from the director of women's services at the local hospital last Friday and went in yesterday for an interview.

By trade, I'm a hospital nurse- we typically don't dress professionally on a daily basis.  And more than that I've been a SAHM for almost 6 months.  I don't dress professionally for that at all.  With a 25 month old and a 5 month old, I typically am doing well to get a shower and feed myself.

Anyhow, here's what I wore...

Shirt- Anthropoligie (very old)
Skirt- Loft (old)
Belt- Loft (old)
Shoes- BCGC (old courtesy of DSW)

(Yep, everything is old.  How do you shop with a 25 month old and 5 month old? And how do you find money to spend on clothes when you don't have a job?) 

Would you hire me?

Seriously, just give me the offer already...


Monday, September 2, 2013

Mommy Monday- A Day in the Life

Mommy Mondays

Or really I should say Mommy Monday Fail.  

A day in my life looks like an incomplete "to-do" list.  Take this blog post for example... Rachel, Krystal and I were excited to host the first ever themed Mommy Monday post!  And I had intentions of gathering my photos to show you "a day in the life" of our house.  But it is now Monday afternoon and that did not happen.  

So thanks for linking up.  I will enjoy reading your posts, just know that most of my days end with me not completing something that I was hoping to accomplish- like this blog post.
Come back next week and link up any mommy post!
 I promise that I will drop the ball on something next Monday, but it won't be my blog post.  

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Five Months

Weight- 15 lbs

First of all, let me just say that Haddie Grace definitely looks like Chris; he now has a child he can claim as his own :)

Eat-  I just started giving Haddie Grace cereal a few days ago.  (So about a week after she turned 5 months.)  So far we ain't doing too hot with it.  She uses her tongue to push the spoon and cereal out of her mouth, so I'm pretty sure more of the cereal gets on her bib, in her hair, and on her hands than actually in her belly.  I'm sure this is normal and it happened with Phoebe too, I just don't remember.  I don't like messes and food and babies is a mess.   Anyhow, she's started to eat cereal.  I have some sweet potatoes and apples in the freezer that I made a couple weeks ago (we ended up with more than we could eat so I figured instead of throwing them away I could go ahead and make some baby food) so I'll probably try to give her some sweet potatoes soon.

Since we never had much success with Phoebe eating (she didn't eat baby food very well and then once she finally started eating purees, she would not eat regular food well...) and I grew to hate making pureed baby food, I am very interested in the baby-led-weaning approach to introducing solid foods.  We might give it a whirl.  We'll see.  Thanks Mums make lists for the idea!

For the first couple days I was feeding her in the Bumbo.  (I fed Phoebe in the bumbo for months before transitioning her to a travel booster seat tied down to a chair which she still uses!)  But Haddie Grace will not sit still in that thing.  I know bumbos are not supposed to be able to tip over, but she looks like she could do it.  It makes me nervous to leave her sitting in it on the table while I'm getting her food ready and cleaning her up.  So I found a high chair at a consignment sale the other and we are loving it!

Sleep-  Still not sleeping through the night.  Boo.

Play-  This child will be full-fledged crawling in a couple weeks I am sure.  She is up on her hands and knees, belly off the ground, and scooting forward and backwards (with a few face plants thrown in the mix).  As soon as she figures out how to coordinate her arm and leg movement she'll be across the room in no time.

She can't fully sit up without support yet, but almost.  She can sit up by herself for a few seconds, but not quite well enough for me to leave her sitting up yet.

She is loving this excersaucer that Courtney is letting us borrow!  Thank you!

Haddie Grace just got her first tooth on Monday!  She had been fussy and chewing on her hands excessively and cold chewies for the last 10 days, so I was wondering if she was starting to get a tooth and sure enough her front bottom right tooth just broke through the gum!

We are still using cloth diapers, and let me tell you two in cloth diapers is a handful.

Phoebe loves "holding" (sometimes dropping...) her little sister.

We had our first sick visit to the pediatrician (for either child) last Monday too.  I had actually called (again) about her diaper rash and they said to go ahead and bring her in since the prescription they had given me over the phone two weeks earlier was not helping.  When she woke up from her nap Monday afternoon she felt a little warm, but I didn't take her temp because I was trying to get everyone out the door to get to the doctor's appointment on-time.  Over the weekend she had had a low-grade temp, but I thought she was teething, so I didn't think anything of it.  (Since she just got a tooth I don't think my assessment was far off.)  I was planning on getting HG a couple more vaccinations while we were there, so I asked the nurse to take her temp.  She had 102.4 temp.  The doctor didn't care about her diaper rash.  After several days of high fevers, vomiting and diarrhea, multiple visits to the doctor, 4 blood draws, a catheter, and 2 shots of antibiotics, she was diagnosed with a kidney infection.  (Thankfully because of a diaper rash we caught it early...)

We are still on antibiotics now, but she is feeling much better.  We have to go up to the Children's Hospital in Charlotte next week to have a couple more tests done in regards to this kidney infection.  No Fun.  And oh, those antibiotics...not helping the diaper rash.

how cute are these shoes that a friend made for Haddie Grace?


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Washer/Dryer

Just some quick love to our new appliances.  Back in Georgia there was a washer and dryer in the townhouse we were renting so Chris sold his washer/dryer before we got married and moved it.

This washer and dryer we had been using for the past 4 years was AWFUL.  Really.  It would take 3 90 minute cycles to dry a load of towels.  And I'm really not sure if it was because the dryer was so bad or if it was because the washer wasn't spinning out enough water.  Probably a combination of both, but either way getting laundry done in a timely manner was near impossible.

So moving into our new house a new washer and dryer were a MUST have.  I wanted an HE washing machine, but was a little hesitant to purchase one because I was not sure how well it would wash and clean our cloth diapers.  A HE machine is great for energy efficiency and research shows it actually gets your clothes cleaner.  However, it uses a very small amount of water, which can be problematic when washing extra absorbent cloth diapers.

We decided to take the plunge anyhow, and I LOVE them!  (I've figured out a good washing routine for the diapers too, but I'll post on that another time)  We got LG front loaders (because there is an option to add some extra water into the wash cycle for the diapers).  Laundry is so much easier now, less time consuming, and less expensive!

I love all the cycle options that they offer, but my favorite feature is probably the steam sanitary cycle on the dryer.  Have I ever mentioned my dislike of stuffed animals?  I think they are germ-infested, dust-mite covered grossness.  But Phoebe loves them, so they get dragged around the house, rolled around in the dirt outside, chewed on by Haddie Grace, peed on by Phoebe (yep, that's right.  I didn't really believe her when she told me she had to go potty the other night but I took off her diaper and sent her to the bathroom anyway.  She didn't quite make it to the potty.  Minnie was an unlucky bystander) get the idea.  Now I can just pop in the dryer rack so they're not bouncing around the dryer, (super excited to use this with low heat for sweaters this winter) take out my Woolzie balls, toss those bad boys in the dryer on the rack and it will steam clean and sanitize them.   LOVE IT.

These are probably my favorite appliances right now.