Tuesday, February 28, 2012

::sukkah planting guide::

It's time to get organized to finish the sukkah - all the way.  

Here and here are some links to previous posts about the sukkah.  

I think the flooring is our first step.  Josh and I have looked at lots of options.  Its not a perfectly level area and we want it to be easy to moving dining chairs on.  That led us to cement.  Stone would be stunning but we are doing this ourselves and making stone level would be just too big of a pain in the neck.  Josh can do the cement work and I am ready to learn how to stain and seal it.   

We also need to get started on the table top.  It has to seat at least 6 people, but 8 would be better.  The stump in the middle of the sukkah is going to act as the center pedestal.  It needs to be sturdy but removable in the winter.  The engineering of this is all in Josh's corner.  I am just a decoration.  He will pick the material and I am willing to just play along.      
Round 64-76"
Square 60-72"

We need eight chairs.  They need to be comfy but no cushions.  The dogs will make the cushions into stinky beds in two days.  Color would be ideal, but cost is obviously a factor.  
Ikea currently has two possible options, but I am still hunting.

Reidar at $50 each

Urban at $40 each

Then it comes time for all the fun planting!  
Here is what I have in mind~
Weed kill two foot wide perimeter 
Hand pull grass around corner grapes
Let sit for two weeks
Add one bag of peat moss to each side and till in
Top dress with 1/2 bag more of peat moss on each side
Recycle cardboard boxes and use as weed mat
Line outer boarder of beds with rocks or bricks
Cut holes in boxes and plant 
Thickly mulch
Add drip irrigation lines

After that is all done then I will work on the lighting and the little decor things that I am sure pintrest will inspire me with.  Things like a fairy house hidden near by or other sweet whimsical stuff.     

Saturday, February 25, 2012

::breast feeding::

Two day old Lily - first time mom.  Nervous as hell.
Baby Quinn - fourth time mom.  Calm and rejoicing. 
I have seen both sides of breast feeding.  I have breast fed three of my own babies, hell one is breast feeding right this second.  Easy buddy, those suckers are attached.  I have also been a nurse at ground zero trying to teach a first time mom who is still a little gorked out on meds how to feed her little bundle of joy.  Often the babies are a little hung over too so it doesn't go well the first time.  We have lactation consultants at work but they are not always available, and sometimes a NICU nurse has to help the mamas. 


It hurts at first.  Like crazy.  Take a vacuum hose and attach it to your nipple.  That's the feeling.  I think - I haven't actual field tested that theory.  But the pain goes away - I promise.  For me the first 20 seconds hurts like hell but then it gets better.  By about week two it doesn't hurt at all.  But you have to get past the pain.  Anyone who tries to make you think that it doesn't hurt is lying or has forgotten.  

Sometimes breast feeding makes you self isolate.  It depends on how willing you are to flash a little too much skin as too how isolated you are.  With Lily I would sneak off to the back room to breast feed if any one was over.  Almost ten years later I am willing to pull out a boob just about anywhere.  For the record - I am over dramatizing.  But I don't leave the room any more, that is true.  I still cover up, but I refuse to sneak away.  If you are uncomfortable you can leave.  I say that all tough like, but I didn't have the guts to feed Quinn at Emma' swim meet the other day.  Teenage boys and these luscious boobs of mine is just a little too odd for me.  Even if they just get a little flash, I didn't want to embarrass Emma.   

Its a pain in the ass to pump at work.  Even at my nurse job that has a nice pumping room with a high quality pump, it is still difficult.  People sometimes treat you like you are going on a smoke break or you are getting an extra lunch break.  I try to pair up with another milking mom so we can cover for each other.  I have worked jobs before were I had to sneak off to the bathroom to pump.  Gross and not fun.  Now that I think about it, I have had a different job with each baby.  I found that if I was just really honest with them about wanting to pump and needing a place to do it they supported me.  At my Lily Era job I used to make company follow up phone calls while pumping.  Then at least I was still getting some work done.     

Baby Max.  Just because the other kids are here. 
Its the best snuggle you will ever have.  Ever.  For sure.  Can I express this any more clearly?  That warm soft perfect little creature is going to be a wiggly toddler who only sleeps on you after you take them swimming for four hours and wear them the crunk out (MAX!).  Enjoy them.  I keep Quinn stripped down to only a diaper as often as possible because that soft little creature needs to be enjoyed.  Some how when ever Josh is home he always seems to have a beard burn on his soft little skin.  We both can't get enough of snuggle time with babies.   

Its important.  You know this already.  You have heard it.  I don't need to drill it into your head.  Breast milk has many benefits that formula just can't perfectly replicate.  Enough said.   

BUT!!!!  Big-I-am-not-joking-around-here BUT - don't let it add more guilt to your shoulders if breast feeding isn't right for you.   Don't feel like you failed if you can't make enough milk, or your baby is a crappy eater, or you just don't stinking want to breast feed.  Do what is right for your family.  I only breast fed Max for 5 months.  By then he had five teeth and he had chewed up his entire crib.  I was literally terrified of his teeth.  I had about three months worth of extra milk stored so he got breast milk for a while longer, but I just didn't want to breast feed him with that vampire mouth.  I am really trying this time to make it an entire year with the Q monster, but if his crib looks like we are keeping a tiger in it we will see. 

My biggest tip about breast feeding is this - get a contact number for lactation before you leave the hospital.  All the area hospitals have lactation consultants on staff.  No one wants you to be more successful at breast feeding than a lactation consultant.  Have lots of appointments with them in the hospital, request them four times a day if you want them.  Make sure you know how to contact them before you leave.  You may get home and things will start to fall apart and these ladies can be extremely helpful.   

Thursday, February 23, 2012

::Quinn photo shoot::

I was laying in bed feeding Quinn and trying to nap.  But he was wiggling around.  Lily kept "checking" on us every commercial break, which also didn't help.  I gave up on sleep.  But the lighting was perfect.  So, on my next checking in I asked Lily to bring my camera.

I love the soft fuzz on his shoulders and back.
Shooting Quinn's pictures was a spiritual experience.  I know I am still overly emotional, but taking his pictures in heavenly yellow light was surreal.  He is actually here and my soul is healed. 

Lily took this one.  Love the rolls on his side. 

My favorite picture ever. 

Milk coma.

Taken by me with just holding the camera out. 

Here is what Max was doing during Q's photo shoot. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

::painting with Max::

 Josh was home so I let him have a little Quinn time and Max and I played with the paints.  

I love letting the kids make art on poster board.  It take the vigor's of a little kid with a paint brush. 


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