Friday, March 30, 2012

Keep yer chin up.



Yo yo yo whaddup?

It's Raedawg comin at you live

Lying here in bed at 7pm. 

That's right.

BED.

Friday night.

chaching.

Can I getta TGIF?


Okay fine, getting a little carried away, but today I had the sensation of a kid being released for summer vacation. Only by summer vacation I really mean the birthing of an eight pound child through unmistakable pain, shaking, and fatigue followed by enormously engorged breasts. Hollaaaaaaaaaa.

 {My funny baby. Three things she loves: shoes, hats/helmets/upside-down plastic bowls on her head, and the backyard swing}


But I kid you not, after these past few weeks the thought of being done done done with this pregnancy has me giddy. Meeting my newest little girl, freedom to begin RAEcovery (more on that later), and two solid months of nothing on the agenda other than the settling in of a new schedule with our newest little gift leaves me feeling lighter.

 Ironic eh...a fourth child, a newborn, ushering in simplicity?

 I didn't say it would be easy (oh boy have I given up on that adjective to describe anything in my life), but definitely more focused:

1. Learn to love mothering four



2. Raecover self.



Husband's help definitely required and necessary for both.
{Glad I snagged me a good one....}









Life has not been particularly fun these days.
It's okay, life isn't supposed to always be fun to be worth it.

And it is worth every darn bit.

Tyler's arthritis condition has brought a few challenges to our household. Massive dietary changes, multiple doctor appointments, and plenty of energy have been devoted to getting to the bottom of his pain. And man oh man, have I learned this: I despise watching him suffer. I never thought I'd say this but gulp...cough...I think I would take reliving the vomiting of the first trimester over watching him hurt. There you have it. Proof positive. I really do love this guy. 

We're getting on top of it. Things will get better for sure...but you know the old saying "when it rains it pours". I looked at him one night in tears, as he entered his forth day of subsisting on only raw cabbage juice (part of a cleanse to heal the inflammation) and sulked:

Look at us! I'm swollen, you're starving, we're set to deliver a baby in like three minutes, we're tiredundersexed! overworked!
and there is NOTHING GOOD TO WATCH ON TV TONIGHT!!!!!!

WWAAAAAAAAAAAA WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA WAAAAAAAA


Oh what a world what a world what a world!


You see what I deal with here?!

Poor, pooooor me.

;)


Finishing up this week has brought with it a slightly more clarified perspective. I've wrapped up piano lessons, my children are healthy, my husband finally on the mend, and a gloriously little girl is about to make our world even more magical than it already is. (Hopefully sooner rather than later, all optimism is set to expire on due date...please be an early baby.)

Really, it's even better than summer vacation.



Have a good weekend!




Friday, March 23, 2012

Conversations.



Early morning chatter.









Some sound-byte highlights of the week:


Lily pee'd the bed late one night. I peeked in on her around 1am, after making my ninth or so trip to the bathroom myself, and found her drenched. Ohhhhh the joy. Later that day:

Lily: "{Sigh}, Mom. I just gotta tell you something."

"What hun?"

"Well, {sigh, dramatic breath, eye batting}...you know how I pee-peed in my bed last night on accident?"

"Uh huh."

Lily: "Well, I choosed that."

"You did? Why?"

"I was so exhaaaaaausted {think heavy dramatic pronunciation with a slur on the s}.
I'm so exhausted ya know? I just couldn't. I just couldn't. I just decided to pee in my bed."

"Um, okay. I understand. But you really can't do that Lu. You have to get up and go potty."

Lily: "But which is better? {She motions to hold out her two hands weighing the separate choices}:
Getting my sleep? Or going pee?"

"Going pee. Definitely going pee."


..........................................................................................................



London: "Hey Mom, how owe'd are you?"
{how old are you?}
.
.
.
.

"Twenty seven."
.
.
.
.

"When awe ya gonna be seben?"
{When are you gonna be seven?}
.
.
.
.

"Twenty years ago."
.
.
.
.
.


"When awe ya gonna be eight?"
.
.
.
.


"I already WAS eight sweetheart, a long time ago...19 years ago. When I was very little."
.
.
.
.

"Oooooh."
.
.
.
.

{I think we're finally getting it.}
.
.
.
.
.

"How owe'd is Daddy?"
{How old is Daddy?}
.
.
.
.
.

"Twenty eight."
.
.
.
.
.
pause for thought
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.

"When is HE gonna be seben?"

.
.
.
.
.


Alrighty then...square one....let's change the subject, shall we?



















Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Nesting Gone Wild.

















Hair is a full-on-business in this household. 
I'm about to have five women to regularly assemble. 

Mama's gotta get serious.
Mama's gotta get her game on.







One of the last pending items of the nesting fervor has been to organize the dismal abyss of hair accessories scattered throughout our bathrooms. Hair pieces are much like our stuffed animals: skanky little vermin who breed and multiply in dark places only to pounce on you when you least expect it. 
I open a cupboard and find myself buried under heaps of ribbon and rubberbands, searching for that one.dang.bow.that.i.just.know.goes.with.that.outfit.


Today I dedicated an ENTIRE DAY to conquering this beast. And I give you our system: Call me Martha.


Clips on ribbon: 
Who needs a towel rack anyways? Am i right?


Color coded drawers: The little ladies NOW know just where to put the headbands and hair ties they are so anxious to rip out at the end of a day. 






Lils and I also indulged in a day of revamping some Springtime headbands.
And would ya believe she even allowed a photo shoot! 



Lundy girl briefly (and after much begging) got in on the action.

Spring time fedora...get outta town.







So, hmmmm, just where does this leave us?

Baby clothing stocked? Check.
Diapers ready? Check.
 Laundry folded? Check.
40 pounds gained? Check.
Hair pieces assembled and ready 
for the Spring fashion launch
CHECK. CHECK. CHECK.


Folks, I think we're ready for another baby girl.







Monday, March 19, 2012

Limits.






There are so many things I love about my little six year-old.


 We spent a fun weekend playing as a family together.


It included a family trip to the Discovery Museum.
Before heading there, we stopped at the mall to grab a few things.
I stocked her up with new summer attire and some killer ballet flats.

She pouted a lot. Stinker Lu can be very good at maintaining a completely spoiled six year-old perspective and views her life as The Saddest Story Ever Told when told no to full priced denim capris at the Gap (they were cute though, she has good taste. Do i get credit for that?).


There was a little girl, who had a little curl,
Right in the middle of her forehead
And when she was good
She was very very good
And when she bad she was horrid.

{She has this poem memorized, and it makes me laugh. Oh my Lily, I love you so.}


 Later, after spending three hours playing in the museum, we announced it was time to go.
Go get ICE CREAM that is!

She decided there was one stop she still wanted to make in the museum. We said no, we had done enough for the day and needed to get a movin'. 
Enter poutfest again.
We warned and coaxed... 
Ya better be careful Lu...you're about to lose your ice cream privilege.

She followed us, arms crossed and legs dragging and feet stomping.

Honestly kid?! Do you know how lucky you are?! New clothes and eating lunch at a fun restaurant and a trip to a museum and ice cream and a father and mother present in your life and obsessed with your constant care and growth and supervision?!!! No! Of course you don't! How could you!?
The scariest thing is that you may never know...unless I send you to enough third world countries on service projects and line you up with some little friends from the Child Protective Service office. Some comparative study would do you good. 

But ya just can't conveniently do that with a six year-old on a Saturday afternoon when you need to get home and put the baby down for a nap.

She kept pouting. Testing. Testing. Testing.
All five of us went in to the ice cream parlor.
Only four ordered ice creams.



As Tyler heard me finish the order, and Lily's face fell as she realized I meant business, he whispered: 

"Good job, babe."

I muttered back

"This is hard."




And it is hard.

I often think that while disciplining them and feeling despair. When their faces register regret and sadness and the tears fall and they beg for one. more. chance!

Until I hear a resounding reminder...
 in the corner of my soul urging me to draw that line in the sand and remember...

She's worth it.












Saturday, March 17, 2012

Green Day.







Dont'cha just love a holiday that only requires food coloring to make it special?

You're gonna wanna try this breakfast. 
Green or no green, it's mighty good laddies & lasses. 

I've posted this pancake recipe before, but here it goes again. 
(Thanks again to Joan who introduced us to the wonder of the German pancake)

And you're gonna want to use this Caramel Syrup on just about every breakfast item you will ever make. And don't feel too guilty, it is no worse than the nasty fake corn syrup masquerading as Mrs. Butterworth's maple syrup you might have been fooled into using. I truly didn't realize I had never had real maple syrup until just a few years ago. Aw, sweet American diet. It took a while to adjust to the real thing.

German Pancakes

6 eggs
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
pinch of salt

Food coloring (wheechever suits yer' fancy)

2 tbsp melted butter


Preheat oven to 400. Mix first five ingredients together until smooth. Pour melted butter into 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Pour mixture. Bake for approx. 20 minutes or until bubbled and springy to the touch.


Salted Caramel Syrup

1/2 cup sugar
3 tbsp butter
pinch of sea salt
1/3 cup heavy cream

{I just used whole milk, we were outta cream, it turned out just fine}

Cook sugar over medium/high heat in a saucepan until it melts and darkens into a golden color. {Sidenote: I had no idea sugar melts into liquid form entirely on its own with heat!! The wonder of chemistry!}
Add butter and stir. Add salt.
Slowly pour in cream and stir over low heat until sauce turns smooth.
{It will fizzle and steam when you pour the cream, and clump up. Don't worry, keep stirring over low and it will all eventually blend}

Recipe from SmittenKitchen.


Leprechaun Tea

Steamed milk
food coloring
Torani Vanilla Flavored Syrup

Mix to your satisfaction!






Happy Saint Patty's Day!!
















Friday, March 16, 2012

90/10


I realize that for all the regular talk of donuts and truffles on this blog, it may justifiably be said that I am a less than optimal eater.

But in my defense, I live by a pretty decent 90/10 rule.
I like fresh, healthy food...in fact i'm mildly obsessed with it.
Almost as much as I am with Blueberry Truffles.
It makes for a perfect combination: 90% of the time our meals are homemade, whole, and health conscious. 10% of the time you can find me back in my room around 9pm with some sort of cookie. Is this a bad ratio? Is it supposed to be more like 98/2? I'm not ready to go there just yet. Let me live in ignorant peace and blame my thigh jiggle or headaches on mysterious genetics.
Smoothies are a regular staple in this household. I enjoy blending things. We are big on Costco bulk produce, but even for a family of 5 we can end up wasting a lot if it weren't for the glory of the blender. It's the way I sneak spinach, flaxseed, and any other green vegetable into my kids' diets too. Blend it with enough fruit and they'll never know it's there.


Here are our household's
TOP THREE weekly BREAKFAST selections:

1. Oatmeal. 
Warm with almond milk, chopped nuts, a little brown sugar, and fresh berries. Oh YUM.
I add butter to Miss Ellie's to fatten the little squirt up. 

2.  Scrambled Eggs & Whole Wheat Toast 
Topped with lots of chopped avocado and grape tomatoes.
Bring on the Chalula sauce baby!

3. Smoothies.
Combination of any fruit/berries on hand, greek yogurt, milk (or almond milk), flaxseed, and ice.





Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Much Better.









Miss Priss is back to her bubbly, sassy self.
Our little comedian, this one.

We adore this munchkin.













Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Three delights.





1. Nobody loves a bowl of ice cream

 more
 than
 Lundy girl.
 And nobody loves Lundy girl
 more than
 me.
{Daddy might come in for a close tie...he's pretty smitten with her too}





2.  See's Blueberry Truffles. I purchased an entire box of just these truffles.
They are like my pregnancy advent calendar. Only I don't just get one a day. Maybe two, or three...or...


3.  A good dose of inspiration.
Listen to it while folding laundry, washing dishes, or getting ready in the morning. It's what I do. I'm always on the search for the latest good podcast/devotional/debate to listen to: helps to keep my mind in high places (even while arm deep scrubbing a toilet).
















Monday, March 12, 2012

Baby Shower.


This last Saturday a few friends threw me a baby shower.

Despite my protests...

It felt wrong to have people continually keep up with me having a baby every other minute.
I feel like I'm beginning to become a part of people's annual budgets:

We need to set aside for Christmas..
our family vacation...
college tuition...
retirement...

oh yes, and the Haacks will probably be having another child and require more gifts and registry requests....






But those sweet friends of mine wouldn't take no for an answer. And so we had a diaper shower.

Oh boy oh boy did I LOVE this.  Diapers, diapers diapers! Our garage is now stocked!




On the menu: Soup, Salad & Bread bar

Yummy. yummy. yummy.

White Chocolate Rasberry & Lemon Bundt Cakes.

Double YUM TO THE AY.



We sat, ate, and chatted. 
It was lovely.




 And of course too many stinka sistas went ahead and showered me with much more than diapers.
{Shout out to Mom and  Nonna: I now am the proud owner of the world's BEST AND MOST WANTED EVER BABY STROLLER: BRITAX B-READY DOUBLE STROLLER SYSTEM....heavens to betsy i am still pinching myself!!!!}



I'm sad I don't have more pictures of the ladies to show.
In all honesty I have more photos, but because I saw what I look like in them: for my sanity and self-esteem I needed to delete. No unnecessary self-deprecating here: I am grateful for my ability to grow babies...but my face looks like it's been stung by a bee. It's the crowning moment of my last weeks of pregnancy, the symptom that makes me think I will can handle any amount of labor and delivery to get this over with.

I can't go there. Not the big weird nose. Not the puffy eyes. 

I am sorry. No pictures posted if my face is in them.

Oh sweet vanity.


It was a great day. I still get emotional thinking of these ladies, who I love so. 
Women who are busier than me, work harder than me, have more stress in life than me...the ones who watch my children regularly so I can go to doctor's appointments and call just to see how I'm feeling and drop off coupons for the almond milk they know our household drinks!!....

How they find the time to insist on carving out a special day to celebrate my baby is overwhelming and unforgettable. They are my angels here on earth. I hope to pay it forward someday, to be one of the fellow friends on a gal's list who they know they can depend on. This is such a gift.



Thanks friends!