Thursday, December 31, 2009


My Dad died this morning.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Specifically this space.
I don't know what it is for anymore.
When I started we were in the midst of adopting. It didn't work out and it still breaks my heart today.
Then we moved and tried ART again. And failed again.
Then we gave up.
And my infertility journey ended in the most wonderful way possible.
I've blogged it all.
Maybe not great.
Maybe not consistent.
But as I search through my archives for things, I am reminded of things that happened.

I've had a rough year. My whole family has. I think that E took his mom's death harder than he thought he would. He's had a huge shift in responsibility at work. His frustrations started coming out in his personality. And I had to tell him things that I never thought I would have to.

My family was hurt by someone that I thought had been a good friend. A friend who I thought would tell me as a fellow parent concerns with our kids. Instead it seemed like she kept a log about Dani's behaviors and decided to throw it at me all at once. I'm sorry, I don't think that my child is a pervert because she is trying to go into the bathroom to wash her hands while another girl is in there going potty. Self-involved? Sure. The whole thing has made everything with my neighbors off too. Because she CCed them when she wrote me. And she told me I was the childish one because I was so upset. She did me a "favor before HRS came knocking on my door". Well, my life isn't missing anything without her. In fact, I'm a lot less stressed. I'm still sick over it some days though.

I've seen fellow bloggers attacked and I've admired their thick skins and ability to keep going. Maybe it's because they are attacked by people who don't really know them. But what happens when you are attacked by someone you do know?

How do you get past it then? Sometimes it's a member of your family, sometimes a friend. You are told your morals are out of sync and you are an irresponsible parent. You have a bad attitude. You don't really know the reasons for things.

And these people are supposed to love you?

For the past several months I have surrounded myself with the people who love me. E, Dani, and the Squirt. Everything I do, I do it for them. And I put on a happy face when I am doing it.

When I am upset, I come here.

Maybe that's why I post so infrequently. Because most of the time I'm happy.

Not that anyone ever asked.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


For now at least. E came home 2 Fridays ago with a huge empty black bag that he proceeded to fill with clothes, uniforms, laundry detergent, and toiletries. His career field has been tasked to support a deployment. That is all he knew. He didn't know where, when they were leaving, or when he would be back. We expected the phone to ring all weekend with the orders for him to report. But it never came. He checked in on the next duty day and they said that the mission wasn't due to leave til the next week. So we still had some time. Then on Thurs. he got word that his support was no longer needed. We breathed. A little bit. Because you never know. They could change their mind at the last minute. Now that day has passed when they were supposed to have left. And he is still here.

Friday, September 25, 2009


The GENEROUS percentage of reliability that I invest in my husband to get anything done. First, let me say that I love E. He is wonderful. He is a great communicator, father, husband, partner. I could not imagine what my life would be like if he weren't in it. But he is so aloof.

We are both taking classes right now at the same online university. The courses are 5 weeks in length. I have been taking mine consecutively. E has 4 weeks in between his classes. There is a lot of reading, writing, and researching involved for this school. And it is very time consuming. And I fully understand that I have the luxury of staying at home so theoreticially, I should be having no trouble keeping up with my work. However, everytime I sit at the computer table the Squirt cries. He wants my interaction. So the only time I get to do homework is when he is napping. But I haven't been sleeping well. So half the time he is napping, so am I. And when I wake up I am in worse shape than when I laid down.

I can't keep up on the housework. I don't have a big house and it shouldn't be so hard to manage. But this pain? This chronic pain that I have had for my entire adult life? Is kicking my ass. I am on a medication for it. And things got better. But now it isn't better anymore so I think I need my dosage adjusted. Not being able to move = no housework accomplished.

Dani. I love that child. I love her like nothing else in this world. But the choices she makes and the boundries that she teeters on are so frustrating. She wants to go outside to play. I say don't bring any friends home (I am exhausted and the house is filthy). She says, "ok if we go out back we'll use the gate". She doesn't get it. So in 1.5 seconds I lose it. And we get into a screaming match.

The Squirt. He is wonderful. Sweet. Smart. His vocabulary is exploding. But he is also clingy. And I think he is teething. And I want to spend time with him and nuture him but I'm tired. He's heavy and I'm in pain.

All of these things make me really irritable and the slightest thing sets me off. E keeps asking me what he can do to help. And it always goes back to the same thing. Don't bother me with asking what you can do. If you have to ask, I may as well do it myself. Open your eyes. Do the dishes. Take the kids for a walk. Come home on time. Don't flip out when you can't figure out what the baby wants or because Dani has an attitude. When you volunteer to get up with the baby at 6 am on the weekend so that I can get another 2 hours of sleep don't bitch to me that you are tired when you stay up until midnight or 1 am working/playing on the computer. Do your work at work. Don't bring it home. Check what day of the week it is... do the trash cans have to go out to the street? Sweep the floor instead of grumbling that there are obliterated Cheerios on the floor.

Every complaint that he has and every sigh of annoyance that he breathes feels 10 times worse to me. Because it makes me feel that I am failing at everything that I wanted to do. I shouldn't have to give him an itinerary of what I need help with. If that is what he needs, how can I believe that if he could handle things when I go to work? Or if I have to go out of town for a family emergency? Or if I get sick?

It's almost as if the more things pile up, the more I want to withdraw. But I can't. Because I can't rely on anyone else.

Monday, August 24, 2009


Why is it that every status update that I read of a 37 year old aquaitance on Facebook about her new pregnancy that she achieved while her husband was home for ONE MONTH on leave still leaves that bitter taste in my mouth?

Not too mention that she annoying about it. Like the month before he came home she asked on FB "should we have another baby?" (their son is one month younger than the Squirt, so that is TWO pregnancies in one year. My thought was that no, because then we will have to listen to you whine about it). Then before the pee even dried on the stick she announced it on FB. Then the next day started whining about how sick and hungry and tired she felt. Today is her first ultrasound and I am afraid of sending bad mojo. So, I'm venting it here. Oh, and she also whines daily about her husband being gone. Which I understand, trust me. But let it rest.

I don't even comment on her status anymore because I know I would say something snarky.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

How's things?

Eh, not bad.

The Squirt is 9 months old. I didn't update for his 8th month. He's bigger, and cuter. He eats and poops more. Sits up without falling down most of the time. He has 2 teeth. This week he started lunging for things out of reach so he has face planted onto the carpet a few times. Which probably wouldn't be bad, but it is just an area rug over tile floor. So, he's not too happy with it.

Dani passed 2nd grade. She got 'picked' by the school to participate in a summer tutoring program to give her a jump start on 3rd grade. I think that used to be called summer school, but her passing is not contingent on her attending. Her teacher suggested that we keep her practicing skills over the summer. So after her summer session ends, mid July, I am going to have some daily work for her to do. Maybe 30 minutes or so a day.

The fallout with my neighbor. Still out. She completely over-reacted and serverely misjudged the philosophies and morals that E and I have built our family on. She has acted inappropriate at times, but she doesn't seem to allow that other people do that. I'm not angry at her, I'm very hurt that she did not investigate what was said to her, and that she made a decision on my child's 'punishment' without consulting me. You don't want my kid at your house? That's fine, I don't want her there either, but you don't have to go into a tirade, IN AN EMAIL, about how wrong I am as a parent. Without even asking me. This all could have been avoided had she 1. Came to me in person, 2. Asked me to talk to Dani, 3. Not been such an asshat. Oh, and after talking to my other neighbors about the things that happened? She's the only one with the issue.

My mom. I guess is doing fine. I haven't talked to her. I don't know if she knows that I know what she tried. My stepsister says that she is a brand new person.

I started my online classes. Currently in week 3 of 5 of my first class. It's a fluff class, so very easy. I'm still waiting for them to evaluate my credits so that I have a firmer timeline of when I will get my degree. I think it will be at least a year.

I'm having some anxiety issues but I really don't want to go back on the Z. I'm working out again so I'm hoping that will help.

Our dog is slowing down every day. Her demeanor is fantastic. She has the personality of a puppy. But she is locked in the body of a 90 year old. And it shows. She stumbles and falls at least once a week and it's just a matter of time before she breaks a leg. There has been a couple of times that she has squatted to pee and not been able to stand back up.

Oh, for Mother's Day I got a new laptop. I love it. I also got a new refrigerator. I love it also. It is one of those that has the freezer on the bottom. Very pleased.

Today was Dani's last day of school. This Saturday is her next belt graduation for Tae Kwan Do (green!).

I'm watching her play in the front yard on the water slide. Alone. And I would be sad about it, but she is having an absolute blast.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Haystack, meet Needle

I had this email from my mom Tuesday night. It was time stamped 3:54PM.

"Just a quick note to tell you all I love you, and I wish life had been better for all of us. Soon things will get better, Mom's know these things.

We never tell each other enough. Love, Mom"

My step sister called me at about 7 that night saying that the EMTs had just taken her to the hospital. She tried to commit suicide.

My step dad is upset with my step sister for telling me. Evidently, they weren't going to tell us at all.

I just don't even know what to feel anymore. She is OK I guess.... they hold suicidal patients for 72 hours so she will be home Sunday night.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Real Estate

Remember when I wrote about neighbors? Well now we are on the shit list. Because of something Dani has been doing 'for months' but noone felt it was important enough to tell us. Except one parent who collected all of this information and threw it at me in an email. Because she didn't want me to blow up in her face. Because I 'blame' other parents for their lack of discipline and make excuses for my child.

And evidently there has been a meeting with all the other parents on the street and they have decided to ostracize and ban my daughter from their homes.

Without discussing any of this with E and me.

I am just sick.

And now, incredible lonely.

Thursday, April 30, 2009


The ground trembles for months
Your wails are angry and squalling.
The landscape is evolving
It will never be the same.
The Gods cannot appease you
We cower from the inevitable
Your first tooth.

The Squirt actually cut his first tooth about 2 weeks ago. I just haven't had 2 minutes to post it. His second one cut through 2 days ago. He is much happier now. We all are.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


10 reasons why a nearly empty box of pantyliners is the perfect toy.

1. Because you are desperate for 2 minutes to brush your teeth.

2. Because at first the box is a drum.

3. Since the box is cardboard, it doesn't disinegrate when a certain luscious baby puts it in his mouth.

4. When the pantyliners start falling out of the box, it's a brand new toy!

5. Pantyliners are absorbent. Perfect for a drooling, teething baby.

6. The backing makes a wonderful crinkling sound. The baby manipulates his hands working fine motor skills!

7. If the baby gets the crinkly backing off of the pad, it doesn't rip when he puts it in his mouth.

8. If the crinkly backing is off, the baby cannot drop his new toy. It is stuck to him!

9. Those 2 minutes to brush your teeth? It turned into 15 minutes of lovely silence.

10. Pantyliners look funny when stuck across a baby's forehead.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Moving On

We have been living her for almost 3 years now. We closed on this house on June 5, 2006 and spent the previous 4 weeks in a hotel on the island. This is the first place that E and I have ever lived that we will be here for more than 3 years. It feels like we have a migratory clock. We both feel the need for a big change, but there isn't anything to change.

Something that was never mentioned to us in the endless pieces of advice about buying a home were neighbors. It has only recently occurred to me that when you buy a house, you are investing in that neighborhood too. We had always enjoyed close relationships with our neighbors before and we do now. But we are realizing that we are going to be friends with these people for a long time. And let me tell you, it is much easier to be neighbors with someone than to be their friend. There is a lot of drama that goes on in a close neighborhood. And if you are in the middle of it, especially when that drama is between two of your closest friends, then things get sticky.

My neighbor M, bless her, had the worst luck it seemed. It appeared that her kids kept getting targeted in fights, her husband was an ass, she couldn't find a job, they never had any money, the list is endless. However, in getting to know her over the last few years, I've realized that she is the catalyst that always messes things up for her. Last year, she came to me begging for help because her house was in foreclosure. She was going through a loan modification process and that was going to help her. So, I helped. I helped her write a letter to her lender explaining her hardships, and she got approved. She wound up with a mortgage that was less than mine, and she has a house twice as big as mine + she has a pool. She later told me that she went into foreclosure on purpose so that she COULD get her loan modified.

Last summer, she told me that she went into preforeclosure again because the rates went down again. I told her I wasn't going to write a letter for her (in addition to the ones I had written to a previous employer, another lein holder, and the county when her husband got arrested during a domestic dispute). I told her that was a scheme just like my mother would pull, I felt it was unethical, and she was taking advantage of the process. She didn't talk to me again until after the Squirt was born because she couldn't stay away from him.

Three weeks ago she came to me again. She went into preforeclosure again. And she wanted me to write her a letter. Again. I told her no. I told her she was cheating. She said that Obama had a new program in place. I told her, "You didn't believe in his programs enough to vote for him, but now that you need it, you'll take it?" She said, "Hell yeah!" I refused to write the letter. Now we weren't yelling. I was joking around with her and she was joking with me. We never raised our voices. I was very honest though in my position and told her she was acting very financially irresponsible. She retorted that it didn't matter because her credit was awful anyway which I rebutted that it is awful because she keeps doing things like this! I told her in 2 years when her son wants to go to college he'll have no hope to pay tuition because of her choices now.

She has since redone her master bathroom, and kitchen. Complete with cutting out a half wall, and getting granite counter tops in both rooms, and new cabinets in the kitchen. She gets a manicure and pedicure weekly. She goes out to dinner at least once a week. They have 4 vehicles (a fifth one got repossessed, and one of them doesn't work).

And she can't pay her mortgage. A mortgage that is less than mine.

She has also had it out with one of my other neighbors. This year. In the three years that we have lived here, she has gotten into arguements with 6 families and has cut off contact with them all.

I am keeping a low profile. I bet she's mad at me again. And honestly, I don't see how I am losing anything in that.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Who has a whole week off from classes for Spring Break knowing that on the first day back there will be an essay test and doesn't take any of that time adequately prepare for that exam, doesn't show up on test day, then hims and haws with the instructor to finagle time for a make up test?

The chick who sat next to me, that's who.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Checking Myself

There are blogs that I just shouldn't read. But I can't help it. I just disagree with so much of what they say. But I still have a natural curiosity to understand how other people think. I never flame them for their positions. At least not in their comment section. E gets an earful now and then because I just cannot believe that some people are so intolerant of the way that other people choose to live their lives.

There are controversies over breastfeeding, abortion, vaccinations, ART, sexuality, weight, politics.... the list is endless. And all everyone can do is get their panties in a twist and huff around because the author's opinion is just so wrong. Or ignorant. Or hateful. I don't know why I want to understand some people's point of view so much. I would never confront them because they are free to have their own thoughts. And they justify those thoughts and are convicted of their positions. And that is just fine. It is not my job to make them think any differently.

I guess its like a trainwreck. You can't just look away. My eyes have been opened to other people's positions. Some that I feel are archaic and old fashioned. Other's are very modern and almost as unfeeling and unaccepting. Both are guilty of not tolerating the polar view, which I feel is unfortunate. I don't think that people should get out of their comfort zone to concede to someone else's view, but is a simple, "Huh, I never thought of it that way" too much to ask?

When my ex mother-in-law died, I started going through a change. My goals and opinions changed. My feelings on tradition and obligation changed. I began to grow into the person that I am today. I formed ideas of what I wanted to accomplish in my life. I wanted to do something. To be something. And I started on the road there.

I am a whole new person now. Only 13 years later. Only. That's 1/3 of my life. I don't mean to sound "wise beyond my years". It means something to me.

I'm starting to awaken again. I'm starting to change. I find that I am becoming more defined in my position of tolerance and love. And it angers me that people who are intolerant infuriate me because it is completely counter-productive.

I'm a tolerant person. And it upsets me when people try to change my mind about things I have thought long and hard on. Things are going to be written here because I am changing. I am becoming someone new. You may not agree. And that's OK. But it is also OK if I don't agree with you. It is an opportunity for dialogue. Because if we don't understand each other, there is no hope.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

7 Months

Behind again. Pictures coming soon.

The Squirt is so fun. He has started bridging when he lays on the floor. He gets SO excited when he sees us. Dani has a renewed interest in him and he loves her. She likes to carry him around and he squeals and grabs her hair.

His gums are angry. I'm excited to see when his teeth will come in. Dani's came in on her first Easter which was March 31. It will be a huge coincidence if his break through on the 12th.

We hooked up a swing on the tree in our front yard. He loves to swing. But I need to get a new one that has an actual seatbelt. E and I have had to adapt an old belt of his to be a seatbelt.

He has discovered the fine art of blowing raspberries. The neverending sound of "Dadadadadadada" quickly evolving into "Didididididid" and the baby singing sound of "lalalalalala".

He has a new appreciation for his babysitter who had to go out of town for 3 weeks due to her father's death. He spent those three weeks among different moms in my neighborhood (all good friends), but he seems to like being with Sitter much more.

He has a jumpy seat that he LOVES. We have had to raise it twice since he has started using it. I think with every jump he grows. I even move it outside and he will sit on the porch and play for an hour. I hear squeals of adoration coming from people passing by on their walks. I'm really proud of him.

He has started to gain a little bit of balance and will sit unassisted for a few minutes at time. The poor thing has no upper arm strength and can't push himself up yet.

He has finally succumbed to the wonderfulness of food. He now enjoys an early morning bottle, a late morning bowl of cereal, an afternoon bottle, a late afternoon baby food adventure (2 containers), and an evening bottle. Usually there is another bottle sometime during the night. He just can't quite get through the without a little extra nummie.

I have a wall in the kitchen where I have marked Dani's growth and now I have added his in. It doesn't seem real that he has already grown half a foot since birth. There are still moments when he doesn't seem real.

Really, there is nothing in the world that is as magical as the existence of your child. Maybe I feel this deeper appreciation because my kids came to me through such a long fight. It's almost as if the Squirt is a huge reward. He is the perfect addition to our already rich lives.

I know this has a rushed tone, but I really wanted to pound this out while my thoughts are still fresh in my mind. I have pictures to add, I just need to crop a few.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Good-bye Mom

I'm kind of bummed. E's mom died last night. She called on Thurs. night to say that she was going into a medical facility/home the next day. She has been living with E's oldest brother for several years and been on a constant oxygen flow for just as long. She had severe emphysema and probably cancer stemming from a decades long smoking habit. There were some xrays taken a few years ago that had very obvious mass-like characteristics. So her passing in no way comes as a surprise. She got sick in Jan., went to the Dr. and he said that she had only months left. She has had a home care nurse come to the house since then, but it had all started to get to be too much for Brother to take care of. She had fallen I guess, recently, while he was at work and gotten hurt, so I'm glad that she realized that he couldn't take care of her anymore.

She went peacefully, in a quiet room. Oddly enough, in the same building that her mother arrested in a few years ago. She had spent the day with two of her three sons. E talked to me last night (probably moments before she died) and said that she seems ready to go, but afraid at the same time. I can't even imagine. There won't be any service because she didn't want one. The kids and I are staying home.

I knew her 11 years to the day.

I have always admired her for raising the son that became my husband.

Today I did things that she hasn't been able to do for a very long time. I spent time outside and planted a few vegetables, herbs, and flowers. I took deep breaths of the spring air. I felt the cool air fill my lungs and course through my body. I looked into my young children's eyes. I drove. I let the sun beat on my skin.

I've been in deep thought about her for the past few weeks.

She loved the moon. It is waning now. Ironically. Tonight I'll sit under it and do my best to honor her.

Friday, March 06, 2009

6 Months

I'm so far behind in everything. I cannot wait until my classes are over. Anyway, here is the Squirt's 6 month post.

He is so much fun. He is sweet, cuddly, excitable, happy, sensitive, and demanding all rolled into one 16 pound package. He is still not impressed with baby food. He enjoys wearing it more than anything else.
I call this "Toe Jam..... Prune to be Exact."
He still doesn't like to be on his stomach, but he will tolerate it for a few minutes.

And I got these beautiful pictures.

See how happy he is? He really is like that 90% of the time. And, in turn, so are we.
Milestones this month. Consonant sounds 'b', 'm'. He loves to latch onto my face. He grabs ahold of my face on each side and clamps onto my chin with his gaping mouth. When he sees someone he recognizes over my shoulder I feel his little fingers clamp onto me in delight. He also beams this wonderful smile at whoever he is looking at. That is a sure-fire way to get Daddy to come back into the room. He has discovered his voice and he LIKES it. He also pulls a blanket off of his face to play peek a boo but he hasn't figured out that he can put it there if he wants to.
He stopped breastfeeding completely. I had no choice but to get over it. At least on the outside. I'm still a little sad. But honestly, its nice to have my body back again. Which incidently, feels as if it is falling apart.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


I miss you Blog.

I miss my internet friends.

I discovered Google Reader and I barely visit anyone's blog anymore. Only the ones who I can't read their full posts.

Have I mentioned how much I hate writing papers?

Let me pose a question.

The damage to my van from the accident is purely cosmetic. I can rub off most of the paint that transferred from the other car. And the dent, I'm pretty sure can be popped out quite easily. I'm getting money from the ins. co. to get it fixed. But, the amount I am getting will pay for 3 classes in my bachelor's program.

So, what would you do? If you had a vehicle that was 7 years old, and only had superficial damage would you pocket the money or have it fixed? I am not planning on trading in or selling my van until it dies, which I'm sure will be at least another 5 years.

If you kept the money, what you would spend it on? Fun or function?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


So, I got a little sideswiped yesterday on my way to class. The other driver and I swapped info. Both of us were fine, my back was already on the outs, and we could drive our vehicles. So we continued on our way. Both of us were on our way to 8am classes.

So, I call my Dr. this morning because I just wanted to make sure nothing got too jacked up. But he doesn't handle liability stuff. So, I can't make an appt. with him regarding my accident. Sure, I can regarding my back, but not my back because of the accident and file it through my health ins. I have to have my appt., pay out of pocket, and then claim it under the vehicle ins. It's so much of a hassle, I'm not even going to do it. Oh, and the soonest they could get me in would be Monday. Hell, I'll be better by then.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Rollin' rollin' rollin'

From tummy to back. He did it last night. I'm so excited! And unlike his sister, he did it more than once. Now we have to get him interested in going from back to tummy. Then he can roll his happy butt around the house and give my back a break.

Friday, February 06, 2009

It's Over

The signs have been there for weeks.

Disinterest, stress, crying, impatience.

This week.... well. We decided to end it.

The Squirt has broken up with my boobs.

He decided that I am too hormonal.

Naturally, I feel rejected but at the same time I have a new sense of freedom.

Mothers will always mourn how fast their children grow.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

5 Months

I'm a little behind. I am a week late in posting the Squirt's 5 month progress report. I'm also behind on the dishes, the laundry, vaccuuming, and general housecleaning. However, I'm not going to use this time to gripe about how overwhelming these little things are for me. Little things like a pacifier laying on the floor under the swing for an entire week and noone picking it up. Said E, "Oh, I didn't even notice it." Yeah, you don't seem to notice a lot.

NO, I am going to use this time instead to talk about the Squirt!!

Again, I will say that it isn't fair that he has grown so much. I didn't get a lot of pictures. Not good ones anyway. Who knew a baby could move at the speed of light and blur any attempts at documenting his babyhood? See how devious he is?
With my start of classes he has started spending about 5 hours twice a week with a sitter. The first couple of weeks were rough but he's starting to get into it. I realized that he loves me and misses me when I am gone.
I look at the picture above and for a moment I get a glimpse of what he will look like when he is older.... like 5.
He is back to a milk only diet. If we try anything else this is the response we get. Also, he will hold what ever we try to give him in the back of his mouth and try to yak it out. It's quite funny and I find that I try to give him things like juice, cereal, Orajel, and Tylenol just to see the look on his face. The above picture was Orajel.
His greatest achievement this month was the discovery of his feet. He is completely in love with his toes. He will lay like this for a long time and lift his legs up, then down, up then down. It is endless fun for him.
Still no rolling over, still now worried about it. He is very snuggly. When Dani plays with him he grabs her hair. She squeals, then he squeals, then E and I say, "Look, the kids are playing together."
Then we sit back and sigh, "Wow, we have KIDS."

Monday, January 26, 2009


We've been working with Dani on a project for school for Black History Month. We found this while proofreading.
We also fixed it, but not before I died laughing on the floor.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Laundry Soap

Along with my recent endeavor into coupon shopping and building a stockpile, I made my own liquid laundry detergent. There are several recipes floating around on the internet and even some for powdered, if that is what you prefer. This is the one I used.
1 bar Fels Naptha Soap. It is located in the laundry aisle. I really like how it smells. Grate this.
Add it to 12 cups of water, heat and stir over medium heat until the soap melts.

While it melted, I put 1 1/2 cups of Borax, and 1 1/2 cups of washing soda into a 5 gallon bucket. These are also both found in the laundry aisle.

This is your melted soap. It is yellow because the soap itself is yellow. You can use other types of soap, Ivory was the most substituted in what I read.

Add your melted soap and 8 more cups of hot water into the bucket. Stir this until the Borax and washing soda are dissolved. Then add 12 cups, and 2 more gallons of water. I added cold and it seemed to gel instantly with the temperature change. I'll try adding warm water next time. Stir, and stir, and stir some more. I also used a whisk to break up a lot of the clumps. I was literally elbow deep in laundry det.

Let it sit for 24 hours before you use it so that it will gel appropriately. I whisked several times in this 24 hour period. You use 1/2 cup per load and 1 cup for large loads. It is low sudsing so it is safe for HE machines.
This made a little more than 3 gallons for me and it should last me 6 months. I have lots of the Borax and washing soda left to make more batches when I run out. I refilled old detergent bottles that I had kept for this purpose. I did notice that it tends to separate as it sits, so I give the bottle a real good shake to remix it. I may fill up another container halfway so this shaking is a little easier. I am suffering from Tennis Elbow from schlepping around the Squirt so anything weight bearing is a little painful.
If you want a different scent, you can add essenstial oils. 1/2 oz. to 1 oz. depending on what you like. I'm wondering about getting some lemon grass so that it will help detract mosquitoes.
I calculated the cost that it took me to make. Based on what I used of the ingredients, not including the water, it was $2.00 to make just one batch. That works out to .02/load.
This was a lot of fun as I enjoy doing things like this. I am really enjoying this frugal lifestyle that I started. Do me a favor though, when I start cleaning and reusing zip top bags, have me committed, K?

Saturday, January 24, 2009


It's official. 75% of our household is in school. E's online class started this week. My classes are in full swing. Dani just brought home a good report card. Yay!!

I'm trying my best to make the transition easier for all of us. Tues. and Thurs. nights are slow cooker nights. I'm trolling sites like here and here for ideas. Before I leave for school in the morning, I put dinner in the crock pot. This leaves me time in the afternoon to catch a nap if a certain smallish person in our house doesn't let me sleep through the night. We have been working ahead in Dani's homework on the weekends and on non karate nights so that she has some extra free time. E's routine is very flexible as his class is online and he can check in several times a week.

Speaking of transitions, the Squirt is growing, still. I know, right? He will be 5 months old on Monday. I had to start moving him up to 6mos. clothing. I think it is more in his height. I've also realized that he doesn't like wearing pants. I think that they may be too tight on his waist. So we have a lot of diaperless time, or as the wildly cute newest internet term in the Nicky noo-nah!! Love it.

And lastly, I had to give him a suppository today. He hadn't pooped in 5 1/2 days. Now, I am really perplexed in this. He only gets a formula bottle four times a week. Two each day that he is at the sitter. He has decided that anything that is not milk, he hates. So, we have had no cereal. Only in the last day or so have I introduced juice because I am desperate to get things moving, so to speak. Right after I administered the suppository, I sat him on the toilet and he did go. So, at least some of the pressure is off. Oddly enough he hasn't exhibited any signs of discomfort over the past week. So, I am guessing he wasn't in pain, but I thought that 5 days was a little excessive.

Otherwise, things are good. I have pictures to post of my homemade laundry soap making experiment. My class load isn't too bad. I'm sleeping better. Dani is awesome. I have an amazing husband. I'm really happy.

Wow.... I'm REALLY happy.

For real.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

This post sucks

What's the point of having a baby that sleeps through the night if he doesn't sleep through the night?

I don't know what is wrong with him.

Maybe its because his quilt needs to be washed so he didn't get to sleep with it the past 2 nights? See previous post and the bullet referring to the Puke Bath I was subjected to. Maybe he doesn't like being swaddled anymore so he has to learn not to flail his arms while sleeping and wake himself up.

Maybe he's teething? He has been gnawing on his hands and wrists for a couple of weeks, but not drooling.

Getting a cold? His nose sounds very snuffly. He coughs a little bit, but most of the time I think he just likes to make the noise but there are a few 'real' coughs in there.

Come to think of it, his naps haven't been that great for the past few days either.

As for other Squirt news , he currently uses a bink. Though it seems that the only time he really uses it is when he lays down for a nap or for the night and when he gets really upset and needs to be soothed. I have seen him suck on 2 fingers but his coordination still isn't that great to have formed it as a habit. Also, when he is in the swing, he doesn't use the bink to fall asleep and sometimes when I lay him on the floor to play he dozes off with nothing in his mouth.

My reason for introducing the bink in the first place is because I currently have a 7 1/2 year old who still sucks her thumb.

So, at what point do you start weaning from a bink? I was thinking at 6 months. But is that too soon and will it cause him to find a substitute soother such as his fingers or thumb?

Monday, January 12, 2009

About Last Week

Oy. I'm glad last week is over with. I'm giving it to you in bullet style because every time one of these things happened, I felt like I was dodging one.

  • I emailed E at work to ask him a question and as soon as I hit 'send' my laptop POPPED and the screen went black, it partially rebooted and told me I had a system error. I suspect that the hard drive died.
  • I missed an appt. of Dani's with the ortho. for her elbow. When I made said appt. the receptionist asked about the 5th. I said I have another appt. that day, so she set me up for the 6th. Well, when I get to the appt. on the 6th, Dani's Dr. is not even there on that day. She was still scheduled for the day before. And they didn't bother to call and let me know that I had missed the appt. That would have been nice, wouldn't it?
  • While leaving for said appt. I back out of the driveway and close the garage as I'm leaving....only the garage door gets ALL kinds of jacked up on the way down. Well, the 3 feet down that it made it anyway. The cable had popped off the pulley system and on the opposite corner the roller had popped off the track. E and I had to force the door closed without squishing ourselves and now we have to replace the door. Bye-bye tax refund.
  • My left hand was practically useless for 2 days after the garage thing because evidently I strained my muscles somehow and I lost most function of my left thumb.
  • It took me 2 hours to do my grocery shopping because it seems like every 5 minutes I had to stop and soothe the Squirt. I was so exhausted by the time I was done. And between schlepping all the bags into the house, feeding the baby, getting Dani from her Scout meeting and throwing something together for dinner, it took 3 hours to get everything put away.
  • The night that I needed the Squirt to sleep through the night, he didn't. I was up with him twice the night before my classes on Thursday. He must has sensed my excitement.
  • E came home in a foul mood Friday. Male PMS I swear. He was grumpy and impatient and short with Dani. Which makes me feel that I need to compensate for him so I am extra sweet to her. I spent the weekend being a mediator between the two of them.
  • We spend Sat. shopping in P'Cola. Dani wanted a new Webkinz and I had a coupon for a bookstore that sold them. Only the one that she wanted had had the tag stolen off of it.
  • We bought ourselves a new computer chair because it was on sale for $50. Only on the way home I realized that our total was a little high.... the sale didn't go through at checkout so E had to go and reconcile the receipt the next day.
  • The kids got E a dartboard for Christmas. We have been trying to get a nice space of wall accessible in the garage to hang it up and we still haven't gotten to it.
  • My bio teacher (who is a 5 ft. Asian woman and speaks with a Jamacain accent) assigned 12 chapters to be read for our first section.
  • And as an honorable mention. Last night I was getting the Squirt's quilt ready to put him to bed. He still likes to swaddle so I was getting it and him into position (he was over my shoulder). I was seconds away from putting him down, then he burped.... sort of, and I heard him spit up a little.... only he didn't get his head away from my shoulder so he kind of breathed it back in through his nose and his mouth, and think that make him choke which made him throw up. He wretched 3 times and each time a substantial amount of milk came back up. I think he threw up everything he ate from the whole week. He was literally covered head to toe, it was up his nose, in his ears, on his head. Then there was me. It had pooled on the burp rag then ran down my back, he slammed into my head which put it in my hair, and when E grabbed him the pool ran down the front of my shirt, down my cleavage, and all over the floor. Of course I had given him a bath an hour earlier.

This week has to be better.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

One Fun Hippie and an Old Crow

Today is my first day back in class. My self prescribed maternity leave is over. I'm currently in between classes. I have a lot of time to kill so I'm at the library scouting websites to see if I can get any good deals on a Bio book. Hopefully I can find one and return the one I paid full price for before the return date.

My other class in Eng. Lit. My teacher is a hippie. I love her already.

I think I did great getting myself and the Squirt out the door this morning. I even donned a real bra instead of a nurser. I'm feeling like I belong in society and everything. The only things I forgot were my cell phone, and to put on a real pair of shoes. I'm wearing my fake Crocs. I meant to put on sneakers, but oh well. At least they aren't my slippers.

The old bird in the book store wasn't impressed with me I don't think. Nor I with her. She rang up my book, took my card, gave me my card and I started putting my things away and getting them ready to carry. While my receipt was printing she said, "Slow down, you're awfully brisk. I need to tell you that you have until the 15th to return your book and you must have your receipt." I guess I have to go as slow as the staff that works there to understand that I need my receipt to return my book. My speed in doing things is a curse of being a highly efficient person.


Tuesday, January 06, 2009


There has got to be a better way. Today I started my FOURTH blocked milk duct since December 23rd.


I want to cut off my boobs.

Friday, January 02, 2009

4 Months

The Squirt's fourth month was almost magical. He went from a mewling newborn to an excitable baby. He squirms and twitters with excitement when he sees a member of the family. He loves Dani and the feeling is mutual. She makes him dance by moving his arms and legs for him and he loves it. We've gotten full on laughs and, toward the end of the month, hyper squeals.
My waning breast milk supply made me curious to try a little bit of cereal before bedtime to make his belly fuller while sleeping. He can take it or leave it. Most of the time I leave it. He can eat it, but he doesn't get excited when he sees the spoon. Now show him a boob and he gets excited. He flails his arms and when I pick him up he turns his head into my breasts waiting for me to feed him.
He had his first visit with Santa. And there was no crying!! I don't even think that he realized that there was a strange man in a red suit holding him. Though I think we missed the traditional Christmas squawl by mere days. He has started to look weary when a non family member is holding him. It's almost as if he believes that if he avoids eye contact then that person doesn't exist and all is well.

Christas was good to him.... at least as good as it can be for a baby who is completely immobile and gets by on his good looks alone. Just toys for this little boy.

And because everyone needs a "Stupid Christmas Hat Picture" I donned reindeer antlers on him. He loved it. Everytime he moved a little bit the bells would jingle which caused him to move again.
He has grown 7 inches since birth making him a tall 26 inches. He hasn't gained any weight since turning 2 months old. Part of me is a little concerned, and part of me is fine with that. He gained a lot in his first 2 months and I think he plateaued. Also, I don't think he has been getting enough from me.
So we started the 5th month off by supplementing formula. I still feed him every other feeding. That is exactly the time frame that I did that with Dani so it doesn't come as a huge surprise. However this time it makes me sad and upset because now I know it is attributed to PCOS.
He isn't rolling over yet, tummy time is grounds for a huge tantrum, and laughing is on the top five list of favorite things to do. Naps are predictable after about an hour of awake time in the morning. He exhausts himself and must rest. Baths are a joy.... he splashes incessantly. And as for sleeping through the night, for the most part we are there. Sometimes he wakes up though and replugging the bink just will not do. And there is the occasional 3 am poopy diaper that can't wait til morning.
I got so lucky. He is so precious. E and I have a hard time remembering when he wasn't here with us. Yet he has only been here a short time. He has just fit in perfectly. I stare at him and wonder what he is going to be like when he is 1 or 2 or 3... then I stop myself and say, "Liv, he'll get there... don't forget what he is like now." So, I stop, and trace my fingers down the bridge of his nose, and brush away his non hair off of his forhead, kiss his cheeks and snuggle into his neck. And I vow to never forget what it feels like... because I will never be able to do it again.

Thursday, January 01, 2009


I guess it's that time of year to jump back on the fitness train.

Last night I drempt that I won the title of "Meatiest" in a beauty competition.