Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Goings On

So I just thought I’d kinda give you an update on what I’ve been up to and how things are going.

Baby stuff is going really well. So well in fact I don’t feel like I have much to say about it.
     My little guy is already close to 12 pounds! And I’m really extra mushy gooshy over him. I regularly tear up when I’m looking at him -- just really soaking in how much work it took to get him here, and how much I love him.

    I was talking to a lady at church, who also had similar pregnancies and I was telling her that (the mushy gooshy-ness) and her response was to smile with heartfelt eyes, and a nod saying, “things of great price…”
  I tear up just thinking that thought. It’s so true. When you pay a lot for something, it means a lot. (This is not to imply anything negative about any parent-child relationship after an easy pregnancy. I have a couple girls I love like crazy, that I met after easy pregnancies.) But it got me thinking…if my experience of hardship and sacrifice gives me such a deep feeling of love, how much must God love us, after all the hardship and sacrifice he made for us. (What a lovely gift I have to comprehend that more now.)

I do feel like I’m coming to a lot more sound place emotionally on the whole experience. While pregnant, I really did start to lose it. My sanity was seriously on the brink, and I questioned a lot about life and God. Getting some time and perspective is really helping a lot.

The only real hard thing emotionally I’m fighting these days is the pull I feel to rush myself. I want to rush myself back into shape. I want to rush myself back into being on top of life. I want to rush myself into being better at everything I wish I was better at. I do this to myself on a normal basis. I can drive myself too hard on the whole. But I think what’s making it so tempting to do right now is the fact that I feel like I missed a whole year of life while I was pregnant. So I just kinda want things to snap right back into place ASAP, so I can kinda pretend that didn’t happen and I can get on with life. It’s not really a disappointment in myself. (Like getting into shape isn’t really so I can look fantastic. Or because I think I look gross. I really don’t feel that way.) It’s just kind of a defense mechanism against the disappointment of missing out on so much. (I want to look like I used to, so I can pretend I didn’t suffer. So I can say, “See I’m fine.”)
I keep having to reign myself back in. I keep having to remind myself that it did happen. That I was actually physically incapacitated for a whole year -- I need to respect myself enough to ease back into “normal” without hurting myself. When I want to jump head long into a calorie watching diet, I have to tell myself I need time to reacquaint with food in a regular way. When I want to finish my house (in every single way), be on top of our family meals, and rock homeschool lessons, all while nursing my newborn without breaking a sweat, I have to tell myself “You have a newborn. You are gonna be sitting in a rocking chair most the time. (Not doing all that stuff.) That’s ok."

Anyway, life with three.
I was able to take all three kids to Target the other day. First time out with three. (I don’t believe in rushing myself with this stuff. I’m really lucky that Blake will run for groceries and things, or stay home with the girls while I run out with Bronson. So I don’t actually have to do stuff with all three unless I want to thus far.)

I felt happy with the outfit I threw together for my postpartum self. 

My outfit is hardly pinterest worthy. And the evidence that I was just pregnant is still visible. But I just felt good in this. I like the tie on the oversized tee I feel like tying it right there is the prefect balance of kind of camouflaging the pooch, as well as giving it kind of a nod of respect.  I don’t always want to make it invisible. I earned that bad boy. (The shirt is just one from a pack of Men’s Hanes V Necks -- it’s nice having a whole lot of cotton shirts that can get soaked in many ways and not really care.) 
I also enjoyed the wide headband as something cute to hide messy hair and draw the eye up. 
(Sorry the picture quality is so terrible.)

Anyway -- The girls were amazing during the shopping. And somehow, I seriously lucked out that Bronson slept through the entire shopping trip. (He also gifted me in that he didn’t fill his diaper until the moment we walked through our front door once we were done -- how perfect of timing is that!?) So that day really boosted my confidence.

In food news. I’m pretty much normal now on how I feel about food. And wanted to get us as a family more on a normal food page. (Food was total survival mode while I was pregnant. We had no semblance of family meal times and eating the same things.) My hardest customer is Jasmine. She has the bulk of the allergies and, I think based on that (kind of as a survival instinct maybe,) she has a lot of specific food preferences, strong aversions, texture issues. She really is trying to not be picky or defiant, she’s able to talk about it rather clearly, it’s just really hard for her. Anyway. When you add that into the mix of so many foods being allergens figuring out what she can eat is exhausting.
    She doesn’t like a lot of foods. But she has one favorite. Macaroni and “cheese.”  (I make a gluten free, vegan mac and cheese she is obsessed with.) Only problem is, it has a lot of spices involved. So for about the first half of my pregnancy I just couldn’t bare for her to eat it -- the smell almost killed me (and it lingers on her for like a day and a half -- especially to a pregnant nose) so it had to be outlawed. I felt really bad about that, but I had to. After I got used to how sick I felt I was able to say she could eat it once a week on Friday night. So she has fallen in love with Fridays, counting down to it and rejoicing as we get closer to it.
   So, with her love of knowing Mac and Cheese comes on Friday, I thought she would enjoy knowing each day had a specific meal. And boy was a right. As soon as I told her I would have this system going on, she was immediately excited about dinner. (Which in the past as been more like torture.) It was actually quite shocking how fast she was on board with it all.
    I had kind of a hard time thinking of 5 different meals that we all would enjoy (I’m just shooting for weekdays for now.) But I tried. We just made it through the rotation.  And I have three winners ( 1. whole roasted chicken and roasted veggies, 2. Gluten free Spaghetti, 3. Mac and “cheese”) one acceptable meal (Tacos), and one total fail (Meatloaf -- Jasmine threw up after a sincere effort. Sadly the other three of us loved it. Ruby was gobbling it up.) And as much as I want to be disappointed by that fail -- I should be celebrating the other victories -- it’s a pretty big deal for us to have 4 meals go as awesomely as they did. So we are moving in the right direction.
     So once I figure out five meals we can consistently eat. My plan is to just stick to those for a good long while while we all get used to “normal” -- eating at a table together, all the same foods. (We have a LOT of ground to make up for after my pregnancy.) And after we get used to all that, I plan to try and expand Jasmine’s food horizons inside the realm of her safe foods. I think we are all really happy with the prospect of this course of action. I can already see it improving things for us. I’m pretty excited.

In house news. I finished reading that book I mentioned “Clutter Free With Kids.” And I loved it. It’s so inspiring and covers so much more than I thought it would -- I totally recommend it. It has me all sorts of fired up to clear up our stuff and live with less. The only problem is -- I have to pace myself, due to the fact I’m rather busy at the moment with a newborn.
    The cool thing is, this has me doing something unusual for myself. I’m such an all or nothing person. So my natural inclination is to tackle a whole room or closet at once. Get burned out, keep pressing through, feel crabby, make it work anyway. Get it done. Feel like I need to do it all over again with the next space until I am done. BUT….right now, that’s not even close to an option. So what I have been doing is using my five mins here, and my five mins there to tackle small stuff that’s been bugging me. For example: I have a bunch of raggedy washcloths mixed in with my new washcloths. So while Bronson was asleep, I went and grabbed them and removed them. I’ve been doing this all over the house as I get time and think of it. And I think it might be an entirely more effective way of doing things, rather than tearing up a whole space and hitting a brickwall before it’s done. So I’m kinda excited. I’ve actually made some decent headway in about a weeks time. Here’s the stuff headed to goodwill.

 (I still have TONS I want to get too -- but I’m positive thinking instead of panicking.)

With that going on I’ve been listing our big stuff on craigslist -- Our old green couch (we got when we lived in Iowa), our old kitchen table, some chairs, a lamp… I feel like the queen of craigslist. I feel especially good because I wound up having a bidding war for our old table (it was midcentry -- so hot right now) 

(I still loved it, it just wasn’t right for our current kitchen) and got more money for it than I listed it for -- and... more than I paid for it originally! (And that’s even with us having beat it up pretty bad, and even got pen on it -- which I disclosed.)

I love making good buys on used stuff -- you can almost always sell it again later for something around what you paid for it, making it almost free. And in this case, I made money!

So my house is clearing up (most of it’s been in the sunroom -- which we don’t really use yet -- as it’s still under construction -- but still clearing space is awesome!) And I’m making money! All around awesome.
I’ve used some of the money to get a few more cute-nesses for the living room. And wow is it suddenly seeming marvelous.

I saw this median thing at Target when I went there with the kids and couldn’t get it out of my mind. So I decided it would be the perfect thing to go over our living room fireplace.

We haven’t gotten it hung yet -- but I’m so in love with it. Blake likes it a lot too! 

I was able to use a few discounts at once and get a really good deal.
I’m kinda half in love with it,  and half trying to get used to it.
I think once we have a rug, it will feel better to me.
(I have to figure out the rug still -- I don’t feel like I know how to shop rugs yet.)

And --- You should know this lamp is still on the “maybe” list.
It was free. And I like the size, but I hate the long metal pole that makes the lightbulb really high up above the base. It really makes it dated. (And makes shopping for a shade nearly impossible -- because that size is just generally out of style.)
So we are gonna attempt to take that pole out of the equation and see how it looks.
If that doesn’t work, I’ll shop for something else tall.

Please enjoy our ever-always-on-the-floor couch cushions -- the girls made a “bridge."

Oh yeah -- and -- in our kitchen -- we are working on finding a new light fixture.
It wasn’t in my game plan for now -- but our house had other ideas.
Blake and I were in bed and we hear this loud scary sound.
 I checked on the girls, he looked downstairs (I tried to keep from imaging a bunch of terrifying things.) He came up and said he couldn’t figure it out.
In the morning, I walked past the kitchen and noticed our florescent light was only halfway attached to our ceiling. One half was just hanging down loose. (Wish I took a picture.)
So we just took it down. I’m not sure how well it would have stayed in place now that the screw’s spot striped out. And neither of us liked the light. It was just time to remove it…. It did half the work. (Wow am I glad it didn’t fall down on any of our heads!)
We wound up putting an old fixture up in the space so we can have light to work with, while I figure out what to buy. 

It looks pretty wonky in there right now, with the gross green that was under the florescent light, and the round bulbs in this fixture. 
It’s pretty unsettling to my nerves. 
(Every time I walk in there I imagine trying to mud the ceiling, sand, mud again, prime, and paint it, all while taking 58 nursing breaks over the course of…. eternity. It won’t be that bad -- but the green rectangle whispers such awfulness to me.)
But at least I can see in there with this light up, so I have time to shop for something I actually want, instead of rushing the decision just so I can see.

It’s never easy looking for good light options for 8’ ceilings. Hopefully I succeed. Those florescent lights are ugly -- but they sure do provide a lot of light -- I’m not sure I’m gonna find something to fit the bill of pretty, not too big, and still bright enough. We will see.


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