7QT: Library Finds and Thanksgiving Pics

Linking up with Kelly today to share some randoms, like I do. ¬†ūüôā

  1. This really needs to be quick because I should be working on Gus’ stocking. ¬†I wish I could say it’s a labor of love… ¬†It’s a doozy!
  2. It’s been really mild here, considering it’s the first week of December! ¬†Ordinarily I would be a little sad about this, wishing for a white Christmas and all. ¬†But no, this year I’m dreaming of a balmy Christmas and a mild winter, just like the one before Sara was born. ¬†I’m totally suffering from ptsd after last winter!
  3. Apart from worries about our roof and gutters surviving another winter like last year’s, I’m worried about the winter because we’ve discovered that outside time is vital for Gus’ happiness. Gus is like a little puppy; his daily needs are cuddles and attention, chow time, and outside time. ¬†He is the best version of himself when he’s outside throwing and kicking and hitting things with sticks. ¬†But when he’s been stuck inside too much, watch out!

    Just going a liiiiitle crazy.

    Just going a liiiiitle crazy.

  4. Does anyone else find Trader Joe’s Holiday Fearless Flyer to be a near occasion of gluttony? ¬†Just me? ¬†I just need to give TJ’s all my money, that’s what this is coming to. My recent favorite purchases have been gingerbread coffee and their sea salt and turbinado sugar dark chocolate almonds.

    Yes, that is me holding the flyer over my garbage can.  It eventually went in after some drool inducing reading.

    Yes, that is me holding the flyer over my garbage can. It eventually went in after some drool inducing reading.

  5. I picked up some great Christmas books at the library yesterday! ¬†One I ordered specially, Christmas in the Barn by Margaret Wise Brown, with illustrations by Barbara Cooney. ¬†I LOVE Barbara Cooney’s illustrations, and sadly this version of the book with Cooney illustrations is out of print, so I was happy to find it in the library system! ¬†I also picked up a sweet book about St. Nicholas, since St. Nicholas day is coming up. ¬†It’s called The Gift of St. Nicholas by Dorothea Lachner.
  6. I’m planning on doing a little purging this weekend to make room for presents and such. (When am I not planning on purging? Sigh…) ¬†Still, this Verily article hit a nerve. ¬†I always feel a little guilty when I purge, especially my wardrobe. ¬†I know it’s a luxury to be able to part with excess and/or replace something I don’t really like. ¬†I need to be a better steward of the things I already have and think twice before buying frivolously.
  7. Oh! And Thanksgiving! It happened, and it was lovely! We went to my mom’s house as usual and it was lovely as usual. ¬†She’s been hosting Thanksgiving for the extended family every year (with a break for the year Jim was born) since 1987? 88? One of those late 80s. ¬†That’s a long time! She’s a pro! Of course I took almost no pictures, but here are some random pictures that kind of give you a taste of McFamily-ness.
    Carmela and Sara prancing down the road to Gigi's house.

    Carmela and Sara prancing down the road to Gigi’s house.

    Sara convinced a reluctant "Uncle Chim" to dance with her.

    Sara convinced a reluctant “Uncle Chim” to dance with her.

    Baba on tv telling us all why the $15 minimum wage is a terrible idea.

    Baba on tv telling us all why the $15 minimum wage is a terrible idea.

    Happy weekend, everyone!

7QT: Frivolous Minutiae

  1. Christy pulled on my heartstrings yesterday with her “I miss blogs” post. ¬†I really miss them too. Needless to say, our little sisters blog here has never and will never be big. ¬†My older sisters have always struggled to find time to blog with their growing families and I’ve been struggling with that too. ¬†More than that, though, I’ve been struggling with what the point is. ¬†I’m not click-baity, I don’t have a major theme or area of expertise, and ¬†I’m also not terribly deep or inspirational. Honestly, I try to keep it light and even frivolous. ¬†But is that okay? Is that allowed? It’s strange how the internet and blogs started out as this place where there were no rules and you could just do your thing, but now it seems like there are rules and you have to play the game right. ¬†I’m not on board with that at all. ¬†Anyway, I’m going to still plug away when I can with my bits and pieces of frivolity. And I hope, if you have a little corner of the internet, that you will keep at it too. ūüôā
  2. ¬†I shared on Instagram a while back that I’ve been making this certain dish for lunch for myself.
    Brussles sprouts and onions sauteed in butter with soft boiled eggs on top. Salt 'n peppa!

    Brussles sprouts and onions sauteed in butter with soft boiled eggs on top. Salt ‘n peppa

    I usually aim to eat my lunch after the kiddos are down for a nap (for obvious reasons) but today I made lunch while they were eating and sat down to eat when they were done and supposed to be playing.

  3. Gus is an Oliver type of kid, minus the starving orphan part. ¬†Just the “Please sir, I want some more”, minus the please part. ¬†He most certainly won’t eat my brussles sprouts and eggs, though. ¬†I give him a bite to show him. ¬†But he still won’t stop bothering me and climbing all over the table.

    Gus

    I don’t know that that is, but I want it, Mommy.

  4. Then Sara walks by and says “I fink Gussie has a poopy.” Sure enough, it was a 6 alarm situation in his diaper. ¬†And meanwhile, my beautiful, delicious lunch grew cold on the table. ¬†Lesson learned: no deviating from naptime lunches!
  5. Childbearing ladies of the interwebs, I had to share this recent purchase of mine with you: 

Loft Mosaic Pintucked Shirtdress

I’m super stoked about this dress because not only is it flattering on me now (not pregnant), but it also has room for a first-second trimester bump and it buttons in the front so it’s perfect for nursing. ¬†I consider that a sound investment! Loft is having a 40% sale right now (like always), but maybe if you hold off they’ll have one of their flash sales and it’ll be even cheaper.

6. ¬†I’ve been planning on trying out Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue because it’s name alone sounds like it would help my adolescent skin issues, and also Fran recommends it and she is my fashion and beauty guru. ¬†However, after doing a little research (*cough* googling good BB cream for oily skin *cough*) I stumbled upon Dr. Jart Dis-A-Pore beauty balm and this stuff sounds like magic! Plus it has Dr. in the name, so it will cure my acne, right? Right? Anybody else tried it/heard about it? ¬†I’m waiting to get some Amazon points before I pull the trigger.

7. And, just to make sure this a completely random post, you all really need to make this crockpot soup ASAP. ¬†It’s been a favorite of ours all this fall.

Alrighty, that’s quite enough of my random ramblings. ¬†Check out the other quick takes at This Ain’t the Lyceum!

7QT: Whaddup wid us

Linking up with Bonnie today for 7 quick takes.  Make sure to click back there and congratulate her on her big news!

1. Worst mommy (blogger) ever over here. ¬†Gus’ birthday was 2(?) weeks ago and I still can’t believe the dude is one. ¬†Except I can, because he’s the size of a 2 year old. ¬†He is bigger than Sara was when she was 2, and she’s no peanut! ¬†He needs to walk soon for my lower back and left hip’s sake. ¬†My left arm, however, is looking quite svelte! IMG_4566

2. ¬†He is such a jolly fellow, though. ¬†He says Momma, Dadda, thank you and happy, and sometimes “puhboo” for peekaboo. ¬†He’s only nursing once a day now so he’s been taking little milk bottles during the day and he’s OBSESSED with them. ¬†And he finally popped his top front teeth and it seems like the side ones on the top and bottom are close too.IMG_4480

3. ¬†Oh! And most importantly, he sleeps! ¬†I thought he never would sleep through the night, but at the beginning of June Dave finally had it with the night wakings and subsequent grumpy wife the next day, so he took it upon himself to deal with Gus’ wakings in order to break the night nursing. ¬†And it worked! ¬†I’m wondering why we didn’t night wean sooner. ¬†Now I know for next time. ¬†Life is so much better with sleep, ya’ll.

4. ¬†Sara is loving summer time in her backyard and her swimming lessons. ¬†Swimming lessons are her first “little thing” that she’s done. This fall, she’ll be doing Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at a nearby parish and I’m so excited for her to experience that, not only for the catechesis, but also for the independent learning experience with her friends. My friends and I are also doing the co-op again, and this coming year Sara will be in the classroom with me. ¬†She’s VERY excited about that and I’m excited to see how much she grows in the next year. ¬†3/4/5 year olds were my specialty back in my teaching days, so I’m looking forward to experiencing that age group again with my own kids.IMG_4428

5. ¬†Life has been humming along at a good pace. ¬†I feel like we’ve finally made our backyard a comfortable place to hang out, ¬†so we’ve been doing a lot of that lately. ¬†Dave made us a huge picnic table which we christened on the Fourth of July when we had some friends over, and since then we’ve been trying to have dinner out there when the weather allows.

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6. ¬†The garden is doing pretty well now! ¬†We were worried it was all going to be a wash in June when our backyard groundhog decided that it was¬†his garden, not ours. ¬†We weren’t able to harvest much broccoli and no snap peas at all because of his pilfering, but since we put out a trap, he’s stayed away. ¬†He’s a pretty old guy (or gal?) and I wonder if he knows what the deal is with the trap and he’s keeping his distance? ¬†Anyway, we haven’t had an issue since. ¬†We did have an issue with squash root borers in one of our zucchini plants, but the rest seem unaffected. ¬†We have more yellow squash than we know what to do with! I’m thinking of trying to make these soon.

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Carrots too!

7. ¬†Tomorrow we’re going on a date for our anniversary (which was on the fourth of July)! ¬†We’re finally going to check out the Isabella Stewart Gardner museum and then get dinner in the city somewhere. ¬†This is a big deal for us homebodies!

Happy weekend, everyone! I’ll be following along with all you Edel ladies on Instagram, trying not to be too jelly. ūüėČ

7QT: Blog Angst, Goals and Some Happenings

Here’s hoping that hopping on the 7 Quick Takes train will help me out of my blogging rut!

1. I’ve started and thrown out several posts over the past few weeks. ¬†I lost my groove! First I tried to write about my quest for cute summer sandals, but the quest came to an abrupt end when I succumbed to the siren call of Target’s shoe department.

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Gus is unimpressed.

They’re cute, I like them. ¬†I just always do this. ¬†I cave for the cheapest, easiest buy because the nicer, better made and probably more comfortable pair is so much more expensive! No doubt I will pine over this pair for the rest of the summer. But I made my choice. (Aren’t you glad I saved you all from a post full of this nonsense?)

2. I thought about and even started writing a What I Wore Sunday post about how more often than not, my Mass outfits are not nursing friendly because I’m a heartless mom¬†because Sundays are the only days that I have an excuse to get dressed up nicely and it’s only for an hour, so I don’t see what the big deal is. ¬†And then I decided that, indeed, it is not a big deal, so I trashed that post!

3. I guess I’m having a bit of a blogging existential crisis.

Moving on!

4. Last week was Dave’s birthday, and I made him this cheesecake.IMG_4247

I don’t know which good deed earned me best wife award: making the cake or selflessly leaving the last piece for him. ¬†Anyway, I dun good.

5. The month of May so far has been positively magical. ¬†The garden is thriving, my lilacs are starting to bloom and we’re all beginning to shed our pale ghostly gray complexions and don our summer glows.IMG_4219 IMG_4244IMG_4234 IMG_4261_2

Or, in my case, my first sunspots on my forehead. ¬†Hello sunspots, you go well with my prescription sunglasses and forehead creases. ūüėČ

6. This month I set a fitness goal for myself: run 40 miles in the month of May. ¬†I got my 10 miles done in this first week, so I’m feeling optimistic that I can hit my 40 mile goal. ¬†I’d been plateauing a bit with running because my hamstrings have been killing me.¬†I think my lower back is a mess in general and that’s making my hamstrings tight, but I also have never been the best at stretching, so this week I really focused on stretching after running. I also started drinking coconut water again, since it helped my leg cramps and soreness significantly at the end of my pregnancy last year. ¬†Anyway, if any of you seasoned runners/fit people have any tips about stretches, etc., please let me know! I’m a complete hack at this running thing.

7. What I really need to do is set some housekeeping goals for myself! Gus is almost a year old, which means I don’t really have an excuse any more, huh? I mean, I figured once Gus was sleeping through the night, then I could really get my rear in gear and tackle more than the basics. ¬†Are you laughing yet? Have you figured out the punchline? Gus isn’t sleeping through the night. And the rare nights he does sleep all night, Sara wakes up screaming about losing Minnie or her blankets. ¬†As Jenny brilliantly wrote last week, when it comes to sleep training, there are no victors. ¬†Har har.

Anyway, don’t pity me, I’m not dying from lack of sleep. But I might die from lack of dusting in my bedroom. ¬†Oy! I finally deep cleaned my bedroom this morning and it. was. shameful. ¬†No more! Once a month (hey, maybe the Saturday that I go to confession since I actually have stuck to that New Year’s resolution!) I need to dust and swiffer the bedrooms. ¬†No more neglecting the upstairs since nobody sees it. As the internet is my witness, the dustbunnies will never get that bad again!

Happy Mother’s Day weekend, everyone! And don’t forget to click back to Kelly’s place for more Quick Takes!

 

7QT: Mommy Blog

 

 

Okay, 7 quick takes. Let’s do this!¬†

1. First, an obligatory weather take:

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It might as well say sunny skies and high of 75 for the next week!  I am so flipping excited that spring is finally on the way!

2. So, SK loves Mary Poppins, and I love Mary Poppins for all the obvious reasons, and also because it’s soooooo looooooong. SK does the typical toddler thing where she watches some scenes very intently, but she also plays through large swaths of the movie. ¬†But during the dancing & singing scenes, she dances. ¬†And she demands that we dance with her. ¬†During the chimney sweep part, she grabs her electric toothbrush and demands that I do the same and come dance with her and today I finally got a picture of this craziness. ¬†IMG_3897

3. She also loves to sing (and dance, and make us dance) Let’s Go Fly a Kite. ¬†It’s terribly sweet, but also a little grating. ¬†See, Sara has a very high-pitched sweety-sweet voice and when she sings, she somehow sings in an even higher pitch. ¬†So when she’s belting out “Wets go fwy a kite up to the highest kite (sic)” her voice is literally up there with the highest kite in the highest heights. ¬†It’s a good thing we don’t have a dog.

4. You want more SK sweetness? Okay! This week we got out of the house (!!!) and brought several boxes and bags of stuff to Savers and then shopped for a bit. ¬†I picked up some much needed galoshes for Sara since we’ll have melting snow and mud till June at least. ¬†When we checked out, my clearly cooped up girl starting chatting up the cashier.

SK: Hi! My name is Sara Kate! I’m number 2

Cashier: Hi, I’m Chris

SK: Hi Chris! This is my baby bruver, Baby Gus. ¬†He’s so cute. ¬†Want to say hi to him? It’s my birthday, but it’s not my birthday. My birthday is in April. ¬†We going to Mimi and Baba’s house for my birthday… (and so on and so forth. ¬†She wouldn’t let the cashier get a word in edgewise but she shocked us at the end when we were leaving.)

SK: Bye! Thank you, Chris!

5. Don’t worry, guys. ¬†I have iphone pictures and anecdotes about Gus too.IMG_3860

Gus is 8 months old, such a mama’s boy, and absolutely huge. He also has the most ridiculous shock of white blonde fuzz on the top of his head, and it’s growing taller and taller every day. ¬†We can’t wait to see how high it grows.

He hasn’t quite figured out how to get around which is mostly a relief to me, but it is annoying when he goes on a whining bender because he wants to move but he just can’t do it yet.

But what he can do is jump. He loves his Johnny Jumper. And he bellows as loud as his little lungs will allow while he’s doing it. They’re happy, but serious bellows. ¬†He means business when he yells, I just don’t quite know what kind of business and why! ¬†Anyway, between his jumper bellowing and Sara’s Let’s Go Fly a Kite, it has become much noisier in this house lately!

6. I haven’t been reading much on the ole’ interwebs lately. ¬†I didn’t give it all up, obviously, but I did give up bloglovin for Lent and I’ve been keeping my computer closed until naptime. So my apologies to my blog friends if I’ve missed any fun posts of yours recently. ūüėČ

But! I have been keeping up with Emily Stimpson’s food blog, The Catholic Table. ¬†Not only does she have some great recipes, but I also really appreciate her insight on how our faith should inform our relationship with food. ¬†Check it out!

7. ¬†And finally, I’ve also really been enjoying all the 50th anniversary articles about and tributes to The Sound of Music, my favorite movie of all time. ¬†I was absolutely dumbfounded by Lady Gaga’s Sound of Music tribute performance at the Oscars. ¬†Flawless! ¬†What the heck was NBC thinking when they cast Carrie Underwood as Maria last year?

50 years of solving a problem like Maria.

An interview with Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer.

The real Von Trapp Family.

Happy weekend, everyone! Good luck springing forward! And, of course, click back to This Ain’t the Lyceum for more Quick Takes!

7 Quick Take-Aways from No Sugar January

Well, I did it. ¬†I can hardly believe it, but I did it! I went mostly sugar free for most of January! Of all the diets and health crazes I’ve tried, this has been the biggest success for me. ¬†Maybe because it’s not a diet or health craze; it’s just common sense! ¬†Here are my take-aways from my not-so-sweet experience.

1. ¬†It wasn’t too difficult. ¬†This was the most surprising take-away for me. ¬†The first week I felt hungry most of the time, but I made sure I ate a lot to maintain my milk supply. I just didn’t eat sugary things. ¬†Then suddenly, the hunger pangs went away, which just goes to show, I wasn’t hungry to begin with! My body told me I was hungry when it really just wanted sugar. ¬†Sugar really messes with you!

2. Good begets good.  That one little effort of not eating sugar led to me changing my eating habits.  I ate more good fats to keep me full: avocados, full fat greek yogurt and eggs by the boatload.

I think I have a future in food photography, don't you agree? I mean, I make that paper plate and laminate countertop look good.

I think I have a future in food photography, don’t you agree? I mean, I make that paper plate and laminate countertop look good.

I also upped my vegetable intake, and (don’t tell them) the veggie intake of the whole family. Being mindful about what I wasn’t putting into my body and why made me more mindful about what I should be putting into my body and why. ¬†Its not rocket science, I know, but it was a welcome development for me. ¬†See, before I would attempt to make these changes but then I would feel defeated by my daily sugar cravings. ¬†Without the sugar cravings distracting me, I could focus properly on eating healthfully.

3. I’m the boss of my diet. ¬†When I first was researching sugar detoxes, I found all sorts of gimmicky programs. ¬†It was really overwhelming and frustrating. ¬†Wasn’t the idea to simply not eat sugar? ¬†But sugar is technically in everything! ¬†Some programs called for eliminating fruit, honey, maple sugar and carbs and anything with even trace amounts of sugar in them. ¬†I’m such a goody-goody; I worried that if I didn’t do these programs to a T that it would all be a waste and my sugar cravings wouldn’t budge and inch. ¬†I worried that if I had a little honey in my tea the heavens would open up and God would bellow “Fail!!”

Eventually I resolved to give it a shot anyway, but to do things my way. ¬†And my way was to allow natural forms of sugar like fruit, honey and maple syrup. ¬†I also would eat things that contained sugar, as long as it wasn’t a predominantly sugary food. I did get into reading labels more (which is so obnoxious, I know) but now I have better knowledge of what contains sugar. ¬†Newsflash: a lot of things contain sugar!

Oh, and I drank wine and occasionally beer. ¬†I ain’t crazy! Real sacrifice is for Lent!

4. ¬†There was an end in sight. ¬†The whole month I had the mouthwatering goal of my birthday cake to work towards. Not only was it the dangling carrot that I needed to keep me motivated, but just the thought of turning 30 and entering that new chapter of adulthood was enough to keep me focused on improving my health and striving for an adult relationship with food. It’s still a work in progress, but I feel like I made great strides this month.

Furthermore, it was good to take this break from sugar, knowing that it wasn’t for forever. ¬†That’s always been my biggest hangup with diets. ¬†You starve yourself to be skinny and then… you eat again and the dreaded cycle continues? ¬†It’s so discouraging! ¬†Like I said in my initial post, I love food. ¬†I love sugar. I love to bake. ¬†I’m not going to throw that away, it’s not a bad thing! ¬†The bad thing was I was addicted to the sugar. ¬†It’s a powerful, addicting substance and it’s not good for you in big daily quantities! ¬†My goal was to kick my cravings and dependency so that I can enjoy the occasional treat without guilt.

5. I lost 5 pounds! ¬†It doesn’t sound like much, but keeping in mind a. I did not cut down on my food intake at all and was constantly eating to make sure I had enough milk for Gus and b. I was already below my pre-pregnancy weight, I’m pretty stoked that I lost weight at all!

It would be a bald-faced lie to say I wasn’t trying to lose weight. ¬†I’m your typical vain woman; I’m always looking for a way to lose a little weight and feel better about myself. ¬†But I can honestly say that I’ve slowly let go of my obsession with those pesky numbers on the scale and on the tags of my clothes. ¬†I’ve put too much stock in those numbers in the past. ¬†I’ve let those numbers ruin my mood and shatter my resolve to be healthy. ¬†It’s so discouraging to work hard and feel better physically but those numbers taunt you and tell you that you’re still a “fatty”. ¬†¬†It’s so unhealthy! ¬†My worth is not in my pants size. ¬†As much as it breaks my heart, I know my daughter will probably have these same struggles in her adolescence and young adulthood but that’s why it’s so important to me that I work to conquer these struggles in myself.

6. ¬†My work is not done. ¬†Going forward, I hope to mostly keep to my no sugar resolve. ¬†I’m aiming for 70-80% no sugar as my norm. I think a key to staying on track is not making sugar a daily thing again. ¬†I don’t know about you, but I used to be one of those people who needed a “little treat” pretty much daily and I didn’t see anything wrong with that. ¬†I’m pretty sure that was my downfall. ¬†I mean, I don’t even let my toddler have sugar every day. ¬†She gets a “special donut treat” after Mass on Sunday and that’s her big sugar bomb of the week. ¬†I need to hold myself to the same standards.

I know there are going to be seasons when I fall off the bandwagon completely. ¬†Valentine’s Day…

Yes, please.

Yes, please.

Easter, Halloween, Christmas, parties, rough times… it’s just life! ¬†But experiencing this success will help me in the future in getting back on track. ¬†That’s just how I am. ¬†I resist trying new and scary things. ¬†I tried getting into running for years before I actually succeeded. ¬†It was hard and I always gave up, but when I finally stuck with it after Sara was born, it was a huge boost to my self-esteem. ¬†Getting back on that bandwagon after Gus was born was tough, but I had the memory of success in the past to motivate me. ¬†And I finally got back into shape and ran a 5K this past December.

7. If I can do it, so can you? ¬†Well, I honestly don’t know. But if I’ve learned anything from this experience, it’s that it’s worth a shot. ¬†Maybe you don’t have a problem with sugar. ¬†Maybe you already eat healthfully and exercise daily. ¬†But maybe there’s another area of your life that you need to work on. ¬†Maybe you’re scared to start because you’re afraid to fail. ¬†Or you’re lazy. ¬†I am both! ¬†I’m just saying, it’s worth a shot. ¬†Face your demons, take that first step, don’t get discouraged and try try again.

Well, that’s 7 things, so I’m going to call it a “Quick Takes” (SNORT!) and link up with Kelly and the other quicker takers at This Ain’t the Lyceum. ¬†Happy Friday!

Almost Christmas Combo (7QT) {phfr}

Is it blasphemy to combine these two great link-ups? ¬†I guess I’ll find out!

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1. We got our tree last Saturday so we’ve been enjoying our Christmas tree honeymoon. ¬†We made the switch from colored to white light lights, and I have to admit I’ve been loving every minute of it!

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2. We always go to the same little farm to get our tree, Pakeen Farm. It’s a sweet, family run place, and they have the most delicious hot mini cider donuts and hot cocoa! Sara had fun running around all the trees, saying hi to the light up Santa and (not pictured) partaking in her most recent favorite pastime (and my least favorite of all time) of checking out the bathroom!

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We bought this on Sara Kate's first Christmas and now she finally gets it!

3. We bought this on Sara Kate’s first Christmas and now she finally gets it!

Every day they grow to be better buddies!

4. Every day they grow to be better buddies!

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5. Poor SK. ¬†She dropped an unopened Costco jar of peanut butter on her toe yesterday. ¬†We ended up at the doctor’s office because they wanted to check and see if it was broken. ¬†So it was a day of some firsts for SK: first real bloody incident (she didn’t know it was called blood so she kept on saying “It’s red Mommy! There’s more red!”) and first x-ray (calling it a silly robot taking pictures of her foot seemed to make it less scary). ¬†But in the end, it was not broken and she got a special viewing of Frosty the Snowman when she got home, so not too shabby!

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Can’t…stop…eating…muddy buddies…

6. ¬†I’ve started the Christmas baking and treat making over here. It’s great, and I’m excited to deliver plates and tins of goodies to my neighbors and friends, and I love sneaking bites here and there and freezing some for us for later… but I’m really trying personally not to overdo it this year because I’ve made a New Year resolution. ¬†Well, a first 20ish days of January resolution. ¬†I’m going to do a sugar detox before my 30th birthday at the end of January. ¬†Sugar and I, we’re tight. ¬†Too tight. ¬†Its time for me to grow up a put a little space between me and this toxic friend. ¬†We’ll reunite for my birthday, but I want to have a healthy reunion. ¬†I want to be able to have my slice of birthday cake and enjoy it and not feel controlled by it. Anyhoo, that’s the plan. ¬†We’ll see how it works out in real life!

7. ¬†I’m sure everyone has plans for a busy weekend, huh? I think we’re doing the customary running hither and thither pulling together all the lose ends. ¬†We’ll be staying here for Christmas and we have a wedding to attend on New Years Eve, where we’ll see some of my family members as well. ¬†I hope you all have a blessed 4th week of Advent and joyous Christmas feast!

~Linking up with Kelly of This Ain’t the Lyceum for 7 Quick Takes and Like Mother Like Daughter for Pretty Happy Funny Real.~

Today

1. Today we’re having a lazy, at-home day after a couple days of crazy.

2. Today Gus is back to his old self after a scary high fever on Wednesday that sent us to the doctor.  We went to the doctor again yesterday because it was his 4 month check-up anyway.  Gus is off the charts for height, having grown 4 inches since September.  And he weighs a whopping 17 pounds 9 ounces!IMG_3400

3. Today SK and I tried a new chocolate chip cookie recipe.  So far so great!IMG_3393

4. Today SK has been in and out, helping me with the cookies and going out to enjoy the fall snow.IMG_3394

5. Today I’m still in my workout clothes and unshowered. ¬†I foresee a naptime shower and maybe(!) a very much needed pedicure afterwards. Fingers crossed!

6. Today I’m angsting as I tend to do, this time about the future. ¬†I love these at-home days. ¬†I love that Sara can play outside or inside independently, just being creative and no one rushing her. ¬†I’m worried that when school starts in a few years, life is going to be crazy and these peaceful days will be no more. ¬†I wonder whether I should homeschool, but then I worry that my tendency to be laid back would get the better of me. ¬†Either option requires a lot of growth and discipline from me, and honestly, that’s probably where most of this anxiety is coming from. I fear that I don’t have it in me to have school-aged children.

There’s no right answer, I just have to keep praying about it and be open to all the options. ¬†Good thing I have a few years!

7. Today, obviously, I’m blogging! ¬†This is sounds so smugly cliche (much like the whole”today”theme of this post), but life is just really full lately. ¬†I’m not over-committed, but I just feel like I have my hands full with the house and our activities and these two. ¬†I don’t want to give up on the blog all together, but I clearly can’t keep up. I guess I’ll just pop in from time to time when I have some time and some working brain cells.

And look! Seven things! ¬†Linking up with Jen¬†¬†Kelly at This Ain’t the Lyceum for 7 quick takes today. ūüôā

7 Things that happened while the husband had the week off

1.  Dave may or may not have gone to Costco all by his lonesome and came back with gallons of booze and 72 Eggo Waffles.  Breakfast &/or Happy Hour at the Johnson house!

2. We took a trip to the zoo!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

3. ¬†Our bathroom finally got a fan. Dave just decided on Wednesday that it was going to happen so he started to cut holes in the bathroom ceiling and in the exterior of the house. No really, that’s how these projects start. Don’t get me wrong, I love Dave’s git er done personality, but I don’t like the 150 year old horsehair plaster all over the place.IMG_3088 IMG_3090

4.  Dave has let me sleep in every day for the past 7 days.  I might have a nervous breakdown come Monday morning.

5. He finally convinced me to watch Breaking Bad with him (this is his second time around). I’m mostly disturbed but a little bit hooked.

6. We finally got to the beach! In September! On the hottest day ever! Dave captured my resting witch face when I asked him to get a picture. IMG_3117 IMG_3118 He got a better one after that, though.

[We took Sara to the beach for the first time when she was 4 months old and we both remember it being SO STRESSFUL. Clearly, this time around we’re pros. ¬†Gus basically sat around in his diaper and got really sandy and we all had a great time.]

7. As if it wasn’t already established, Dave has firmly cemented his status as everyone’s favorite parent and spouse. He needs to take weeks off more often. ūüėČ

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For more quick takes, clicky-click back to Conversion Diary. Happy Friday!

PS Dave also worked on the comments issues we’ve been having here on McSisters and we think it’s all fixed now. ¬†Please let us know if there continues to be more issues!

7 Quick Reasons to Smile

I’m pushing against this postpartum quicksand feeling today and actually getting a post up, by golly! I thought I’d do a combination of a Quick Takes post and a reasons to smile post, which is a happy challenge posed by my friend Annemarie earlier this week. ¬†So, here goes!

1. Our garden is in full harvest mode, and it’s helping us to be not so unhealthy in this survival season of life. ¬†So, while we’ve been eating a lot of freezer food lately, we have fresh tomatoes, green beans and squash to go along with it.

Tried out and loved the tomato zucchini gratin recipe found here. :)

Tried out and loved the tomato zucchini gratin recipe found here. ūüôā

Our carrot harvest back in July was piddling, but SK was impressed nonetheless.

Our carrot harvest back in July was piddling, but SK was impressed nonetheless.

2. And speaking of farmer Dave, not only has he been busy growing veggies and helping me stay sane in the evenings and on weekends, but he also landed an awesome new job this summer. ¬† I’m so proud of him and grateful for all his hard work for our family. ¬†Also, on the days when I get around to pumping, he takes the first feeding at night. ¬†What would I do without this man?

3.This little girl is growing in leaps and bounds every day.

IMG_2956¬†She has so much to say lately, and it’s so adorable. ¬†The other day, SK woke up from her nap in a grumpy mood so we cuddled on the couch with some milk and some Curious George. ¬†Gus woke up a little while later and he was in a bad mood too, and Sara said “It’s sad, Mommy! Why Baby Gus sad?” and I said he was just grumpy after nap and sometimes she feels grumpy after nap too, right? ¬†Sara looked at me solemnly and said “No, I just happy atter nap.”¬†IMG_2978

SK found a faint sliver of the moon outside and said “Wook ower dere! It’s da moon! It wook wike a bana (banana), yum!”

4. And this guy. ¬†IMG_2961He has his moments after nap and his little tummy does NOT like it when I eat Mexican food (sad day!) but otherwise he is such a happy fella. ¬†He’s much more smiley than SK was.

5. My friends and I are doing a preschool co-op this year, and we just had a planning meeting last night. ¬†Part of me is a little stressed because I’m the teacher. But I think I’m stressed because my experience with teaching preschool was in a professional setting. ¬†This is just friends, and we’re all there to help one another. ¬†There are no parent teacher conferences or difficult bosses to please, just a bunch of moms dipping our toes into cooperative at-home learning. ¬†I am enjoying flexing my preschool muscles again. ¬†It’s going to be a good year!

6. And speaking of muscles, I’ve started exercising again! ¬†I started doing my maternity barre dvd again and I’ve gotten out of the house for a few jogs since last week. ¬†I really missed running. ¬†My first run went well and I felt like a rockstar, but I’m pretty sure there was a lot of this going on:

Basically, my baby pooch kinda irritated my incision scar; I was wishing the whole time that my compression leggings had more compression! ¬†So on my second run, I wore spanx. ¬†(Underneath my running clothes, sheesh!) So. Much. Better. That’s right, folks, I run in spanx and I ain’t ashamed.

7. And this definitely random crazy and weird, but it’s been making me chuckle all week. O Fortuna Misheard Lyrics.