Tom's of Maine Toothpaste

Several weeks ago, P and I decided it was time for N to make the move to fluoride toothpaste (from the swallowable bubble gummy stuff he had been using) and we decided to just let him use Aquafresh.  I'm not going to lie, we've used Aquafresh from the very beginning of our marriage because it is my preference and my preferences rule our bathroom products.  This is why my husband, a man with normal to oily skin and perfectly moisturized skin uses Aveeno and other products for super dry skin. 

Anyway, at first N was very excited to use "mommy and daddy's" toothpaste, but that lasted all of three seconds.  Then, the screaming began, "It's hot!  It's hot!  It burns!"  Our son was not the biggest fan of mint.  From there, toothbrushing time turned into torture screaming time, each occasion marked with tears and screaming and the words "it's hot!".  My husband persevered.  I gave up under the tears and moved to toothpasteless brushing. 

When Diane of Knitting Zeal offered a giveaway for strawberry toothpaste on her mommy blog, I got super excited.  I entered and won a tube of Tom's of Maine toothpaste and just got it this week!  Wow.  What a difference.  When N first saw it and I explained what it was, he took the tube and started dancing with it.  It was "his" toothpaste.  When he got his first bit of it, he stopped and said, "Yummy!  I love strawberries!"  (A blatant lie.)  Since then, we've had several successful toothbrushing opportunities with it, and I'm ready to call it a success.  He's pleased with its distinct lack of mint, I'm pleased with the fluoride he is spitting into the sink, and P is pleased that he doesn't have to deal with more screaming.

So, consider this my thanks for Tom's of Maine for hosting a giveaway on my friend's blog.  Since I doubt this will be the last tube we use, you've managed to turn a giveaway into a mom who is going to buy this product for several years.


Pumpkin Monkeys

Honest to God, these socks took like a year.  It's embarrassing.  I mean, I'm less embarrassed than Helen should be considering this is a throwdown where she didn't even start her part of the throwdown.  (Sorry, Helen, I had to call you out so I could feel better about myself for taking over a year to knit a pair of socks.  Using my current knitting timeline, the dishcloth I just started should be finished when N graduates from college.)

These socks were made for my mother-in-law.  When I first met the woman, she was merely the mother of a friend.  Then, years later, I started dating her son, and I wanted her to like me!  (Luckily, I was one of those children/teens taught to respect and be polite to people who were older than me, so I hope she never disliked me prior to my dating P.)  When, P and I got married, she invited me in a roundabout way to call her mom, which I basically and stupidly ignored.  

See, over the years, she's helped me to cultivate my hobbies such as knitting and photography.  If I express an interest in something like scrapbooking, she gets me a scrapbooking kit.  She asks me about what I'm interested in and tells me about her own interests and she has a never ending list of interests and hobbies.  Since my own hobby list is somewhat extensive, I love this!

More than a year ago, our family learned that she has a pretty bad health problem, and I think it quietly devastated me.  It took me a while, but I realized, I did love this woman in much the same way I loved my own mom.  (In fact, our relationship is much less antagonistic in that my mother-in-law doesn't try to take the raising of my child out from under me.) This means I did something for her that I would not do for my own mother, I knit her a pair of silk and wool socks in a beautiful colorway and in a Cookie A pattern.  (My own mom gave some of the socks I gave her to her cat as a chew toy.)

I like how these came out and they were washed prior to the giving so don't feel bad about me wearing them for the pictures! Truthfully, they look silly on me because I've just learned that I have silly sized feet, while my mother-in-law has normal sized feet.

When I gave them to her, my mother-in-law was tearing up which made me want to tear up. To be fair, though, excessively sentimental magazine ads make me want to tear up during my seventh month of pregnancy. I hope they keep her feet warm and remind her that someone loves her very much. Also, she first thought they were mittens and mentioned how she needed a pair. Anyone have a good mitten pattern?


I Swear I Still Knit

Sure, it is only a dishcloth but that is something, right? Also I've installed the blogger app in an attempt to blog on the road.

That allows me to show you I'm knitting at the park while my son and husband play with rockets.

Remind me to edit this when I get home! It looks hideous.


Stupid Things I Do During Pregnancy

I find blogs all about miscarriage, or death, or injury, or pain, and I read them and I cry and I cry and I cry until I get sick and I throw up.

I get angry over stupid things like the fact that we have no salsa in our house when I need some for N's lunch or that I wanted to use the word mad instead of angry and it made me think of the number of times I have to correct myself daily about the correct word to use and how I fear that I'm ruining N's chances of going to a good college because I'm teaching him the incorrect meaning to words.

I blow my nose in the shower and I nearly faint at the amount of blood that comes out.  Ugh, pregnancy nose bleeds.

I make myself chocolate chip cookies at eleven at night and then get bitter that they cause me heartburn.

I refuse to talk to my doctor about my anxiety, insomnia, or general fear of giving birth or having a C-section.

I spend a great part of every day hating pregnancy and then worrying that I'm ruining this baby's life.

I wonder if people hate me because I hate pregnancy.

I crave the moment I have the baby in my arms, but fear the exhaustion that will come with it.

I'm nearing the third trimester (only one more week!), which was absolutely the hardest one last time.   In approximately three months, I'll be posting pictures of a newborn and telling you all about how I tried to punch someone at a hospital to get out of getting an IV.  (Okay, maybe, maybe not, but I wouldn't put it past me.)  I'll be gushing about a baby and thinking that the picture I have of N holding him or her will be the best thing ever.  I will be cradling N in my arms in a hospital bed to assure him that I love him so so much.  I will be thinking "At least that's over" when really it will be more like "Well, this is just beginning."

And now, so you can all be as sad as I am, go read Posie Gets Cozy's story of a failed adoption attempt.  It is beautiful writing that will make you weep.


Hormones, A Blessing And A Curse

Photo by seyed mostafa zamani

I've been bitching so much about pregnancy and labor recently that I told P and Helen I was afraid that I'd dislike or hate this child at birth. Both reminded me that I felt the same way about my pregnancy with N.

This is true, by the way. I spent seven months terrified I would not love my baby enough the first time around. I was convinced that I'd love my cats more and my baby would know it. I was convinced that I would always love my husband best and mostest and brightest.

I had a blood clot, a hospital stay, twice daily needles, pills, and I hated pregnancy back then almost as much as I do now. (Difference is that back then, if I decided that the only thing I wanted to do all day long is work in a chair, and then come home and take a three hour bath, this was a completely valid lifestyle option for me.)

And I remember being angry at N for needing to be delivered and for the C-section and for everything. Evolution is clearly protecting me by trying to tell me that I'm lousy at having children and I should not do it. It's weird knowing that simply a hundred or two hundred years ago, I'd be part of the statistics of women who died before or during childbirth. I was one of the 33% of women who'd not make it. My body is trying to protect me by making me miserable during pregnancy.

Luckily, evolution and my body also work for my children, I suspect. The second I heard N cry after he was delivered, all I felt was a rush of love. When they showed him to me and allowed me to kiss him after the C-section, waves upon waves of love and adoration poured through me. There are hormones that basically make you feel joy when you see your baby for the first time and those suckers kicked in like nobody's business with N.

I remember sitting in the hospital room, holding him for the first time, and thinking to myself, "He is the most splendid thing that has ever existed and will ever exist and I can't believe it is possible to love this much." My love for my husband skyrocketed simply for being involved with making N exist. I'd probably mark those days as the happiest in my life, rivaled only the by the first time P told me he loved me, my honeymoon, and the first time N told me he loved me.

So, even though I still fear quite a bit that I will be angry about pregnancy for the next three months, I remind myself daily of that feeling I had after I heard N for the first time.  It's going to be okay, new baby, I'm going to forgive you everything the moment I hold you that first time.   But, I'll probably never let you forget it when you get older.  HA!


I Would Totally Murder You All For Fresh Chocolate Chip Cookies

Once, when I was still in college, and talking to my father, he mentioned my mom-mom (his grandmother and my great-grandmother) and her cooking. He turned to me and said in all seriousness, "There is no one I wouldn't run over, besides you, for one more plate of her spaghetti and fried chicken." I think he only excepted me because I was in the room with him. I came home and asked my mom about it and she paused briefly before saying, "That was some really delicious, delicious food."

It's fairly significant that she said that because my mom loves to be contrary to anything my father says or thinks. In fact, I often joke that the only thing they have in common is a love of tacky decorating and cats. Apparently, this also now includes my mom-mom's chicken and spaghetti dinners.

Either way, lately, I've been dying for sweets. My cravings are all for sugary, baked things. The other day, I stood at the fridge at my mom's house weeping because she didn't have chocolate chip cookie dough made up into little frozen balls waiting to be baked up, nor the ingredients to make cookie dough, nor a working cookie sheet. (When I used to live with her and make cookies, it would be an hours long production of pain and suffering and I'd buy all the ingredients fresh every year. By the time I left that house, we probably had ten bottles of vanilla about.)

Today, looking at something, I randomly thought, "I'd run over just about anyone besides N for a fresh and hot chocolate chip cookie." Guess my mom is right and I'm more like my father than I previously thought.

Also, are you all ready for the Hunger Games movie? Trailer below. I don't care if my baby is only one month old, I'm going to go see it.


No Lie, This Is A Rough Week

Some of you are probably unaware that my husband travels a fair bit. For months there, we were in a bit of a lull of travel time, but prior to N's birth, P would be away for weeks at a time. Then, during the winter of my discontent (ie, the time where N was diagnosed with asthma and I spent a lot of time at the doctor and hospital with him), P was called to work in MA for months and then NY. He probably spent a good half of the year, or more, away from us. I suffered through it a little bitterly, but N was always so happy to be with just me back then and I was so energetic, that it didn't really matter.

Then came this pregnancy and P's work's desire for him to travel to Seattle multiple times. And it's ramped up in October/November and might continue through until January, which we will officially call my eighth month of pregnancy. Now, for some energetic and glowing pregnant women, that might be fine. They might be happy to raise their children on their own while highly pregnant. Others might be forced to due to military leaves or being single parents. (If there is a heaven, I highly hope those people get a prime location in it after death. Otherwise, I hope karma comes for them early by way of lottery winnings.)

Me? I've been dying when P's gone. Like, I've stayed with my mom nearly the entire week and I'm still tired and beaten down. Literally, my mom called me this morning asking me if I wanted her to come over to babysit, because she was so worried about me. I told her no and later regretted it when I thought I was going to die after an hour walk at the mall with N. I literally came home and got sick from the food I had eaten and then lay on the couch while N watched television so I could get back to a state where I could give both of us a shower.

Now, N is in bed, and I'm still wishing I were comatose or on bed rest. (Man, hospital bedrest vacation, you're sounding better by the day.) How the hell am I supposed to get through another fourteen weeks of this crap? Anyway, I have to go make a "Star Of The Week" poster board for my son. Wish me luck. So far, I've put his name on it. It's due Wednesday. Why am I getting homework when my son is the one in school?!


Cookbook Club Happened And You Were Most Likely Not There

Seriously, you almost all dissed me by not coming to Cookbook Club.  Luckily Helen and Anna are awesome and brought awesome food.  Though, remember how I said I might make that Greek Chicken Soup?  I did not, but P did and now I think I might be obsessed with it.  It seemed like no trouble, fairly cheap (especially if you ditch the chicken meat) and it was divine.  Also delicious?  The risotto which Anna made and the lentil salad from Helen.

Having said that, I kind of want to get a feel out for this -- if I had a gathering of people for sewing one day, would anyone be interested in coming?  I know a bunch of people who are either interested in learning to sew or who want to make time for it, but don't.

My Precious

I would totally be willing to let people try out my own machine, a Bernette 66, and I would have an iron and pins and stuff available for people who do sew and I would make room at my dining room table for people who'd like to bring a machine along. I'd even be willing to give some beginning pattern deciphering clues to people interested in fashion sewing, since I've done one or two easy patterns so far.

Would anyone be vaguely interested in doing this? It would probably be in either December or January, because by February I will have turned into a giant ball of nerves and anger waiting for this baby to come. (Like I'm not already a giant ball of angry nerves now!)


Almost Done Monkey Socks

How boring is this blog nowadays?  After moving from no posts a month to fifteen posts a month, I lost two subscribers!  I'd like to point out that it takes skill to lose readers just for posting at all.  Anyway, thanks for the feedback on the fabric post.  I'm pretty sure I'm just going to do two elephant pillows, but if not, I think the turquoise fabric was the other favorite.

Baby number two is still freaking me out on a daily basis.  While I got the full results from the amnio and the news is that the baby is good as can be, I'm still a paranoid mess.  For reals, I hate kick counts.  If this baby is sleeping for about an hour during the day, I start to have mini heart attacks where in I'm convinced the baby is dead.  Then it kicks me about fifty times two hours later, and I'm reminded that I'm paranoid.  (Still, why hasn't the baby kicked recently?!  For reals?)

In further crafty news, my Monkey socks intended for a special person in my life are almost done.  They only took more than a year to complete.  Luckily, when I threw down a challenge to Helen, she actively ignored the challenge to instead knit on sweaters, cowls, baby blankets, and all types of other things.  I'm going to beat her handily even though she started a sock up.  Just goes to show that if you want to win a challenge, make sure to challenge a person who is not even trying.


Need Fabric Opinions

So, after seven years of living with the ugliest cough on Earth, further uglified by my cats ripping up the arms until you could see the wood underneath the foam underneath the ugly fabric, I decided to do something about it. I mean, here is a picture from two or so years ago when it wasn't as horrible --

Bottle Time

I got a slipcover. I've always been virulently anti-slipcover, but I needed to do something. This couch was hideous. I ordered a cream slipcover from Overstock and a grey rug. When we got the slipcover, it ended up being a grey slipcover instead. So, now I have a yellow and grey living room, which I kind of like more than I imagined I would. I think I'm going to make turquoise my accent color.

Having said this, I still have the couch's hideous pillows which are saggy and ugly and non-comfortable, so I've decided to buy some down pillow forms and make pillows. Now comes the questions, which fabrics? I've decided on one which I fell in love with.

Do I do two of these pillow? Or do I do one of that fabric and one of the following as well?

And, because I'm a giant dork, I'm thinking of making N his own pillow in the following fabric.

P declared that this was unfair and I should make two of this pillow so that he could have one as well as N.


This Is Halloween (Or Are We Calling It Snowtober Now?)

Ugh, "Snowtober" is my new least favorite meteorological phrase ever. Perhaps it knocks "Snowmageddon" out of the running. Anyway. Last night, P came home and we woke up N from his nap (still three hours, still every day, still beautiful). We quickly got him into his costume and he was a grump.

Unhappy Buzz

Even though he has been begging for a solid month and a half that he wanted to be Buzz Lightyear, at the last moment he told us he wanted to be Batman. We nixed that since his Batman costume was small, not as warm, and had not cost us close to fifty dollars. (Disney store, you're so expensive but so awesome. You're the worst.)

With the weather being what is was, we had him all bundled up under the costume and he was grumpy about that too. After finally getting him to my mom's house and trick or treating there for a bit, he finally warmed up to the whole activity, gleefully running around from door to door, wondering why we were denying him the "lights off" houses.

I managed to keep up for one block before I went back to my mom's house to devour fruit and cheese we had brought for dinner. (On a less happy note, my heartburn is back and worse than ever. It was a pleasant two weeks I had without bad heartburn, but it appears that for me, pregnancy and heartburn are best friends.)

When N and P got back, N was covered in mud with wet socks and shoes. We quickly divested him of this gear and put him in his nice warm clothing and gave him a half a bowl of soup before allowing him to eat his weight in candy.

In other news, the tantrums are continuing and I'm still so tired and angry about it. I know I love my son and that he loves me, but I swear, the idea of every day preschool sounds so delightful right now. I could just rest.

Hey, in my continuing stories of women who could be my nemesis, here is a person who wants to spend their life eight months pregnant. It's interesting to note that she also has hard pregnancies, but doesn't even care. I like how she "anticipates" labor too. As opposed to my fearing labor.