Dec 31, 2011

Meet the Newest Addition to Our Family

This is Kate. We are all in love.





(actually this is a picture of Kate's sister I took off the internet. It was too dark when we got home to take a picture of Kate.)
She's a 2006 Toyota Sienna XLE and she's got enough space for every member of our entire family.
We are so very happy to be done minivan shopping. :)


Kate has power sliding doors. You can't know how cool that is unless you've got kids too small to open car doors on their own. Did I mention there are TWO of them? She also has leather seats (easy to clean with kids) and for being such an old gal, has barely any miles on her at all.


When The Boy figured out we wouldn't be coming home with Jane (our Camry) he hugged the bumper and cried. But he got over it quick when we brought Kate home.


The Boy is in love with all of Kate's buttons. And really, she's got quite a few. We don't even know what all of them do yet but I do know her heated seat buttons are adjustable. As in, you can adjust exactly how hot you want your behind to be. That's just nifty. I'm also loving the power hatch in back. When it comes time for a road trip, the DVD player will be handy. I'm also looking forward to the wireless headphones for the DVD player. (Mom and Dad don't have to listen to Jungle Book three times in a row!) And there's an AC power outlet in back. I have no idea what for, but it's there.

When we called the insurance company to switch stuff over, we actually ended up saving $160 a year on car insurance. How cool is that?

But do you want to know the best part about Kate? She's paid for. I can't tell you how much Dave Ramsey has changed our lives. It's amazing what a little planning, a little foresight and some saving can do for a person's bank account. I'm not gonna lie, though. That's the biggest check I've ever written and it was PAINFUL. It took us weeks to work up the courage to sign a check that big. It's also why we waited until the last day of the year to buy. Saved ourselves about $5k buying today vs a couple weeks ago.

I'm so happy that tonight I can sleep knowing that whenever baby comes, we have a vehicle big enough to fit three car seats in and all my children can ride safely.

Dec 30, 2011

Want to know what's going on?

http://www.haveyouhadthatbabyyet.com/

Post Dates

It turns out being past your due date feels exactly like being pregnant before your due date. Who knew?
Based on how everyone acts about it, I thought for sure one or the other of us would've exploded or something by now.
Well, I did kind of explode on Facebook at all the people "checking to see how I am". Oops.

Anyway, today the kids and I went to the park and made a Costco run. A nice old couple wished me luck on my upcoming delivery, which was a nice change from, "are you STILL pregnant?" Like it's my fault or something for not having given birth yet. Seriously. If I were in charge of this show, little dude would be at least a month old right now.
After dinner, the boy and I headed for the next town over to visit a friend.
When we got home I cleaned the bathrooms and kitchen and did some laundry because it turns out having just had company is a lot like right before you have company except that instead of planning the cleaning out and doing it in stages, it all needs done at once because your house is trashed.

I keep thinking I need to tackle the master closet. It seems like a project for a weekend, being roughly the size of Rhode Island. Why anybody would waste that much space on a closet escapes me until I realize our house has pretty much zero storage elsewhere, which explains why the rest of the closets were easy-peazy in relation.  Anyway, the end result of having a closet that big is that everything gets dumped in there and it's not really designed to store anything except clothes. If FEMA saw it, I'm pretty sure I would get disaster funding to clean it up. Maybe I should send pictures...

Husband has come down with a cold. I'm glad I'm not in labor tonight so he can get some good sleep. Heaven knows I won't sleep through the coughing he's doing. 

PS It's sort of entertaining watching my kid flip from one side of my uterus to the other. Disturbing in an Alien kind of way, but entertaining.

Dec 29, 2011

The Due Date

I woke up at 4:45 to pee and couldn't go back to sleep. So instead I woke up my husband. What? Why should I be the only one awake deciding between a Toyota and a Honda? 
We got ready for the day, made breakfast and managed to pile my sisters and mom into the car by 7:02am for the drive to the airport. 

I kept hoping the whole way there my uterus would spontaneously start to expel the baby so my mom would stay. No such luck. They boarded the plane and headed back home. :(

I drove to yet another dealership to look at a minivan (because when you have the third baby, you need a minivan, apparently). Then I came home and instantly fell into a two hour coma while my children continued to watch TV. 

Upon waking I had this overwhelming urge for Carrot Halwa, so I started grating carrots and reducing milk before I needed to leave for acupuncture. (If you haven't eaten this Punjabi slice of awesomeness I highly encourage you to do so at once. You haven't lived until you've experienced Halwa.)

Can I just say that acupuncture is the BEST $45 I spend EVER? I always leave feeling AWESOME. I'm not saying every acupuncturist is this great, but mine sure is. :)

Then I came home to kids still watching TV, finished the hulwa and shopped online some more for cars. 
We drove our kids to the in-laws while we went to test drive some cars. 

And that's how I spent my due date. Good thing the baby didn't like, explode or anything from not coming out on the medically prescribed totally irrelevant guess date. THAT woulda sucked. 

Dec 28, 2011

Depressing

Guess what's more depressing than still being pregnant?

Getting 47 million texts, IMs and emails asking if I've had a baby yet.

Ferills, people. Chill.

Due dates are not expiration dates. They are a GUESS. If I pass the due date, baby won't poof into non-existence or anything. I swear, it's still in there. Also, nobody wants baby to come out more than me. I can offer a 100% money-back guarantee on that.

Plus, you're making me cry. Or throw giant hissy fits. Neither is pretty at this point.

Dec 27, 2011

Indian

OK, maybe life isn't SO bad. My mama just offered to take me out for Indian tonight.

I <3 my mama. :)

PS Still Pregnant.

Tick Tock

It's two days until my (medically (ir)relevant) due date.

I'm still pregnant.

Watch this space for updates.

PS Pray I don't loose my ever-loving mind in the mean time, mkay?

PPS Bah Humbug. YOU try being happy with a twelve pound bowling ball sitting on YOUR nether regions.

Dec 20, 2011

Steaming Pile of Excrement

This will come as no surprise to those who know me, but I've gotten my self into a hot mess.
I blame boredom.
Really, I should stick to knitting, sleeping,  or something equally harmless when I'm all antsy and have nothing else to do.

Yesterday I went to see a hospital based midwife. It's kind of a long story how I got there. I'll try to be brief.

1. Home birth midwife fired me.
2. Family found out, then freaked out.
3. The freak-out lasted for quite a number of days and affected me enough I started to question stuff, like the lie of the baby. (This is where I start to blame boredom. If I'd had something to DO through it all, I probably wouldn't have cared as much.)
4. I knew of exactly ONE hospital based provider I'd trust. Several mama's I know have used her and I've seen her and had enough conversations with her at Birth Circles and the like to feel that she was a reasonable individual. Plus, I needed a prescription, so I made an appointment.
5. Hospital Midwife was NOT pleased that I waited until 38 and a half weeks to seek care.
6. Bottom line: she really, REALLY wants me to birth in hospital. Well, duh. That's kind of the general consensus amongst folks who work in them. *I've* even held that opinion. Look where it got me. Hacked to bits with emotional scarring to boot and several years of intense therapy. That's where.
7. All that expensive fancy EMDR therapy I did makes it so I don't totally loathe and fear hospitals anymore. Now it's more of an icky taste on the back of my tongue. Kind of a "if it's necessary I can choke it down but I'd really rather spit it out" kind of taste. One would think that would make my choice easier, but really it's just made it harder because now I don't know what I want or what I should do.

Hospital Pros
There’s a one in three chance I get the midwife I want (part of a practice, she’s not on call every day)
IF something happens, I can be cared for quickly
Logically the safest place IF people leave me alone
Hospital Cons
Continuous Monitoring. I don’t want to be hooked up to a machine the entire time I’m there. The machine that goes ping is over rated.
Which nurse you get is kind of a crap shoot. I could end up with someone awesome or someone horrid. I’d rather have more control over my team.
I’m on a clock, and must deliver on their schedule.
No access to shower/tub for pain relief during labor
I have to drive there. In labor. Unless you’ve driven somewhere in extreme discomfort, you can’t know how annoying that is.
Emotionally challenging location with baggage.
I’m a little scared I can’t do this with people watching me, or at all.
Astronomically Expensive.


Home Birth Pros
Being in my own environment will likely shorten labor time and definitely reduces the risk of infection for me and baby
I don’t need to change locations when things start to get intense
Not on a clock
I control who is and is not invited in the room
Not tied to a monitor/room/bed
Can access the shower or tub without anyone else’s say so.
Baby never leaves my arms. No need to fight off interventions for baby.
Cheap.
Home Birth Cons
IF something goes south, it would take a while to get help. IF the southbound train is a complete rupture, baby and I are pretty much both dead.
I’m in charge of the clean up.
No chance of help from an official midwife
I’m a little scared I can’t do this on my own, or at all
There are probably plenty of things wrong with me, and even with my brain. At least one of them isn't a brain-eating amoeba.

Dec 16, 2011

Argh! Or Calling the Cops On My Four Year Old

STOMP! made an appearance at The Children's Museum today, and since our year pass was about to expire it seemed like a good time to make one last trip. These things always seem like a good idea in theory. Upon arrival we saw FIVE full size school buses. Yes, FIVE. And a news van. Hoo Boy.

Well, we went inside and got ourselves settled for the show. It turns out our bit of carpet was vacant for a reason; the sun was particularly blinding in that location. Oh well. I figured that fact fit in with the five full sized school buses out front. The Boy was so excited to see STOMP! since I'd been showing him YouTube clips. While we were discussing this, Zsa Zsa managed to sneak off. Museum staff were alerted of her disappearance and after a few minutes we located her, 5 feet from where I'd been sitting. Obviously she wasn't there the whole time but I was glad to have her back, at any rate, regardless of where she'd been.

The kids and I had a repeat of the conversation in the car on the drive over; namely if you can't see Mom, Mom can't see you and THAT IS NOT OK. Stay where you can see Mom or when you are found, we will all leave immediately! If only I'd left with them after that mini-disappearance. It was but a foreshadowing of things to come. (dum dum DUMMMM!)

After the show (which kind of sucked, by the way. Even the STOMP! guy said so...) we went upstairs to play. AGAIN I said, "if you'd like to leave this room, come tell Mommy first!" The kids did pretty well at first, but when it was time to move to a different exhibit, The Boy said he'd like to go to the bathroom. Well, that's just fine, let me get your sister and we'll go. By the time I got her collected, The Boy was no where in site. I figured he REALLY had to go and had high tailed it to the restroom so Zsa and I made our (laborious) way there. No Boy. Hmmm. Well I'm like 40 million months pregnant and I was standing IN the restroom so it's not like I could pass up the opportunity and Zsa, regardless of the fact that she's back in diapers, likes using the mini potty and sink so she needed to go, too. She also felt the need to strip from the waist down, including her socks so it took a while to get her put back together. The Boy was still missing.

Zsa and I combed the third floor looking for my missing spawn. We alerted museum staff. Nothing. More nothing. On a hunch I took Zsa and we looked through every exhibit on all three floors. We checked back in with museum staff. Nothing. I walked the entire museum AGAIN. More nothing. At this point it had been 30 full minutes since I'd seen him last.

Now, we go to the Children's Museum almost weekly. My kids are VERY comfortable with that building and go missing regularly, but I'm usually able to locate them within two or three minutes, and they have NEVER strayed from the floor on which I first lost sight of them. They have their favorite exhibits and it's easy to find them. Until today.

When we reached the 30 minute mark I told the employee in charge of the search that it was time to call the police. I'm not an alarmist when it comes to my missing children. I know they are usually playing somewhere completely oblivious to my searching for them. But half an hour in a rapidly emptying museum? That was pushing it, even for me. The employee said that I could talk to his supervisor about calling in extra help. My response to that?
"You can call whomever you like to talk it over, I'm calling the police NOW. It's been 30 minutes." I had my finger hoovering over the second 1 in 9-1-1 when his radio crackled and the freaking gift shop reported having found my son.

He was THREE ever loving stories away from where he'd first disappeared. In the year we've been attending the museum, we have NEVER EVEN ENTERED the gift shop. That's a can of over-priced worms I haven't felt the need to open.

You might imagine that I felt all kinds of relieved to have found my son but the only emotion I've felt since the whole thing started is anger. I'm so MAD at my kids. "Stay where you can see Mom" is simple. It's direct. There's not a lot of ambiguity with that statement. Both kids are totally capable of following it. Both kids completely ignored me and made me waddle all over this freaking museum we only go to because I'm trying to be a good mom. I have a pair of THE most ungrateful children on planet earth and I'm really REALLY sick of being their mother. How did I end up being totally taken for granted by my kids?

Anyway, it turns out The Boy had taken the elevator to the first floor to use the bathroom we normally use on our way in, and then had decided to stay down there and browse the gift shop without his mother. I am glad we didn't have to call the cops and issue an Amber Alert, but Sheez Louise. If I don't have an extra three gray hairs from this experience, it's not because my kids didn't try.

Dec 14, 2011

My Birthday


To be perfectly honest, I kinda thought having a birthday at 38 weeks pregnant would pretty much suck. I was all set to write a whiny post about all the things I WOULD have done, had I not been enormous and awkward. (Horseback riding, four wheeling, bowling, roller blading, deep sea diving... OK not deep sea diving. That last one sounds more like a punishment.) Imagine my surprise when my birthday actually turned out amazing! 

Most of the credit for the totally awesome birthday goes to my wonderful husband. First, I woke up to waffles. Now, The Hubs normally (always) ruins waffles but today he actually read AND followed the recipe and not only were they edible, they were really yummy. The kids gave me finger-painted cards. The best bit was when Zsa Zsa told me what I thought was a flower stem was, in fact, her sharp SHARP teeth. Awesome Sauce. Husband surprised me with a gift for a deep tissue massage. I'm holding on to that puppy until AFTER the baby arrives. 

One of my besties came over with a bag full of kitchen gadgets I totally needed AND I got to shower alone. Woo Hoo!

Then the kids and I went to the monthly home school PE activity at Xtreme Air. This place is pretty awesome. There's a football field sized room with wall to wall trampolines. We all bounced and bounced for two hours. I tried to bounce my baby out, but it didn't work. I did end up a tad sore, though. 



video


video


video
We stopped at Chick-Fil-A for lunch on our way home and then I laid down and had contractions for three hours because, hello, I'd just irritated the living daylights out of my uterus by bouncing all over with a giant baby in my belly. Another friend dropped off some flowers to pretty up my house.

When Husband was done working, we jumped in the car and headed to the chiropractor. The bun in my oven had turned transverse so we needed to get that changed before the weekend, just in case. A few adjustments later and I'm happy to report that baby is now head down. I'm hoping that lasts through the night, just in case.

Then we dropped the kids at my sister in law's house. She kindly offered to watch them so Husband and I could go out. We went to Joe's Farm Grill, because the food is A-MAZ-ING. There's a reason it's been on TV. A quick trip to the mall for some eyebrow beautification and slice of Cheesecake Factory's Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake rounded out my perfect day.

I know it sounds totally lame, but it was exactly what I needed. Thank you husband, for walking slowly through the mall with me, waiting patiently while I used every bathroom we passed, and changing a poopy kid when it wasn't your turn because it WAS my birthday. You are amazing. I am so blessed to have you in my life. Mwah!

PS My kids were pretty certain I needed a cake. Apparently it's not a birthday if there's not a cake with FIRE on top!

Dec 9, 2011

Morning Routine

When I wake up the first thing I do is check to see if the baby fell out of my uterus during the night. (Hey, it could happen.) Then I check in with my brain to see if, while sleeping, I've had an epiphany and can finally attach a moniker to the parasite currently inhabiting my womb.
We are having a devil of a time even coming up with a list of names for this baby. Hubs keeps shooting down all the good ones like Howard, Cedric, and Pedro. Names that end in 'S' are out and recently I learned about this thing called a sibset or sibling set. Apparently you have to choose names for your children that "go together".  Whatever. That would have been useful information to have BEFORE I started naming little people.

Then I make my kids' breakfast. No matter what I make, The Boy will complain or ask why he didn't get "a hundred of it".

Then I explain to Zsa Zsa how it's not "an accident, mama" if you did it repeatedly and on purpose. You'd think that conversation wouldn't be a daily morning occurrence, but only if you didn't know my daughter. Today it was in regards to slamming the silverware drawer. Over.and.over.and.over.again.

I get about 10 minutes of alone time in the shower while the kids watch Sesame Street before someone is mean to someone else or uses a "language word" the other kid feels mom needs to know about. At this point I'm lucky if that's long enough to shampoo and shave one leg.

Being a mom is super glamorous. Especially first thing in the morning.

Dec 4, 2011

Zsa Zsa's Third Birthday and Party



In a stark contrast with last year, I did not spend the night before Zsa Zsa's birthday sobbing in my mother's arms. I did not spend it sobbing, at all, in fact.

I think this is evidence that EMDR Therapy is working. It should be, at $140 a session. Holy Toledo.

We all (except the Boy) had a great day celebrating Zsa Zsa's 3rd birthday.

She chose green pancakes for breakfast (whole wheat blender pancakes with a handful of spinach added in) and we ate them happily (except for The Boy).

Then we took baths (happily, except for The Boy) and got dressed. The Birthday Girl got to wear a super cute princess dress. :)



Then we headed out to run errands. While at Costco, I let her look at the cakes. I was half thinking I'd copycat which ever design she chose and half thinking of ordering the cake, because I'm seriously, seriously pregnant. Plus, clearly we needed a cake that feeds 48 since the invite list had a total of 6 kids on it.  From ALL the cake designs she could have chosen, the winner was...


Blue Dinosaur. 

I'm serious. She could have had a princess, a clown, flowers, balloons...but no. Blue Dinosaur was the clear winner. So much so, in fact, that there was a fight between The Boy and Zsa about who got to have Blue Dinosaur Cake for their birthday. We finally decided both of them could. Phew. Disaster averted.

A few days later we had her party. With The Boy's 3rd birthday I kind of went over the top. Like, rented a bouncy house and invited everyone we knew, over the top. Because we only do parties on odd years, Zsa's party was the first one we've had since then. I have learned that 3 year old's don't need bouncy houses. (Husband and the accounting gods are doing a happy dance.)

3 year old's don't even need formal invitations. I texted four moms whose kids play with us frequently.
We met at the park and ate cake and ice cream and played on the toys. Best.Idea.Ever.
 Can we agree I got the important part on video? Keeping the candles lit in the wind was enough of a challenge...

 Who wants cake? 
Notice the happy grin...and my extremely gravid uterus atop spindly legs...

If you are my daughter, happiness is a park, chocolate cake and not holding your pee while playing in the sand. 
Happy Birthday, my sweet Energizer Bunny. 

Dec 3, 2011

Pomegranate Pancakes and Apple Cider Syrup

I had this awesome idea to do green and red pancakes for Christmas morning. Because really, how cool would that be? The other day we added spinach to our normal blender pancake recipe and it was, while not awesome (because hello, spinach) it was edible (thank you, syrup). The kids thought green pancakes were fun.

Tonight I tried to make red pancakes but here's the deal, I used pomegranates. At first I only added 1/2 the pomegranate seeds and the batter ended up gray. Gray is not really an appetizing food color. In fact, I won't eat Mexican gray squash simply because of the name. So I added the other half of the seeds and ended up with purple batter, which makes sense, since pomegranate juice is purple. Clearly, this was a well thought out experiment. The pancakes tasted fine and cooked up pancake colored, but what really made the meal awesome was this syrup from One Perfect Bite. YUM.
I think maybe beet juice would make red, or at the least pink, pancakes. I'll give it a try and report back.



Here are the recipes:

Whole Wheat Blender Pancakes From Make a Treat With Wheat ( I think. The recipe is copied from my mom's house and I'm pretty sure it was in that cook book, which is now out of print.)

1 cup wheat berries
1 cup milk
blend on high for 2 minutes in a regular blender or 30 seconds in a commercial grade blender.
Add
1/2 cup additional milk blend additional 2 minutes or 30 seconds, depending on blender
1 egg
1/2 cup oil or applesauce
2 T sugar (optional)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
Blend until combined

VARIATIONS
Green Pancakes
Add a handful of spinach to the wheat and milk blending, reduce 1/2 cup milk to 1/4 cup or 1/3 cup depending on the spinach amount ( you want the batter to poor but not to be watery)

Pomegranate Pancakes
Add seeds from one pomegranate to
1 1/3 cup wheat berries
reduce total milk volume to 1 cup
may omit sugar, depending on sweetness of seeds

Apple Cider Syrup from One Perfect Bite
One Perfect Bite Syrup
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup apple cider
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons butter, cubed
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Whisk together dry ingredients, add wet stuff and bring to a boil. Stir while it's boiling until thickened and bubbly, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low and stir for an additional 2 minutes.