A Beautiful Site

Now that David can read simple books, and Elias can sit through a story, these boys have found something new to do together.

Photobucket

It’s a beautiful site.

Photobucket

And it’s not wrestling.

Photobucket

But I’m sure someday, these two will figure out how to make it into a full contact sport, or at least some sort of competition.

Mai Tai

I’ve been so good about working through my “almost finished” pile in my sewing room. My goal has been to finish one thing a day, or at least put a significant amount of work into a longer project. I’ve been doing better than expected, and have actually finished 5 or six things some days. The day before yesterday I finished a whole pile of Knut work clothes that needed mending, and even some ski things of his. I hate that kind of work and I’m so glad to have it out of my creative space!

Speaking of my creative space, my sewing room has been going through a mini-makeover. Clutter was starting to take over, and pieces of projects were just strewn everywhere. I used to have a policy of only having enough fabric on hand that fit in the cupboards in my sewing room. Well, when things get messy, things start to pile up. Part of my problem is that not everything was fitting in the cupboards anymore. So some of my top projects have their supplies stacked in my “almost finished” pile as well. I’m on a fabric spending freeze until I get myself back on track here.

Photobucket

Then there’s the other storage issue. Up until now my patterns have been organized in a plastic tub/filing cabinet. Then there’s the yarn issue. There’s the tub of cheap yarn, and the tub of scrap wool yarn that I use to embroider some of the wool items in my store. Then there’s my slowly growing reference book library of some amazing crafting books that I use a lot while I’m sewing. Some of my favorites are a cute applique book, a quilting encyclopedia, a pattern alteration guide, a guide for sewing clothes especially for children. All of these have amazing information that I pull out often and I wanted to add a bookshelf to my space. Then there’s the scrap problem, although I wouldn’t define it exactly as a “problem.” When I work on projects, more specifically projects involving cotton woven fabrics, like quilting fabrics, I like to keep as many scraps as I can for future quilts. I keep them fairly organized, per instructions of www.quiltville.com

Anyway, I got this little cubicle unit with a little opening for a bookshelf, a fabric bin which is now full of “almost finished” things. I have no problem having this bin, except there’s this bin and the entire top of my washing machine that has almost finished things. I’d like to cover this bin with coordinating fabric leftover from the bulletin board I covered that’s hanging right above this unit. However, I can’t find all my leftovers. To me that’s a red flag that my fabric problem is really in need of containment! I’m sure I’ll find it one of these days. I just don’t have time to look for something when there are plenty of projects looking for me.

If I can just work my way down to just this bin, I’ll be happy. Then I got some shelves in another cubicle which has a drawer for my various elastics, one is full of buttons, another with trims and bias edging, still another one with all of my double pointed knitting needles. It really organized all the things that were shoved in the one drawer in my sewing desk. Target didn’t have 2 deep drawers, so I had to get a rain check for one, and for the time being my ribbons will just have to sit there. Then I ordered the bottom left bin which is actually a filing cabinet to hold all of my patterns, and replaces the other tub. It’s a bit smaller than my other tub, but it fits the space so much better, and fits with the other cubicles I got.

The next 2 things I want to do is to paint the cupboards in the room white, (I’m thinking this will get done after this baby is born) and to make a fabric cover for my serger, to protect dust from getting in the gears. Plus it will look cool. I’m still undecided if I want some sort of valance in the room, or if I just like as much sunlight to flood in as I can.

So last night, I needed to get something off of my “almost finished pile” and the project I picked wasn’t even started, but wouldn’t fit in my cupboards. My “almost finished pile” also contains my “get done before baby” projects, and since this one was relatively simple I decided to make something from scratch because I’d been so disciplined to finished all of these tedious little projects. I had just finished mending Knut’s work clothes and my machine was all hooked up with the denim weight needle and color thread, and this project included denim as well, so it saved me some set up time.

Photobucket
It’s an Asian Mai Tai. Since Elias was born, I’ve learned so much about the parenting technique of baby-wearing and let me tell you I love it! I don’t wear Elias anymore, but in his first year, having him always there and always close made it so easy to teach him things and soothe him while I was doing dishes, gardening, or helping one of the other kids. It was great as we needed extra bonding to catch up from all of his hospital issues, and we sure got it. I used a ring sling with him mostly. My problem with that is that it only pulled on one shoulder which wasn’t an issue for a long time, but as he got heavier it became more and more difficult.

I also have a Baby Bjorn which I like, and find comfortable, but I don’t think my kids find it quite as comfortable as I do. When they’re not as comfortable, it kinda defeats the purpose of holding them to soothe them. Plus, I can only wear the baby on the front with the Bjorn, and I prefer to wear a baby on my back. On the front, the weight pulls on my back, and the heavier the baby gets, the more I hunch over. On the back, the weight pulls on my abs and I feel like I’m getting a good ab workout…something that any new mom is eager to squeeze in.

So this is the kind of carrier they use in Asia, and can be worn on the front, back, or hip.

Photobucket

Mine is reversible and I used a pattern that I’ve been holding onto for way too long. So I can either have the designer Amy Butler fabric facing out, or the lightweight denim. This was a great “stash buster” project as I let go of some fabric I’ve held onto for way too long, and it came together so fast. Really there’s the waist strap, 2 shoulder straps, the front panel, and the pocket. That’s it. There’s some hidden “X” supports on the inside, but it’s not too complicated.

I also whipped together a Moby wrap out of some $1 Walmart knit fabric I’ve had for I don’t know how long. Really, you don’t have to “make” a faux-Moby. There was no sewing involved. I took 5 yards of fabric (I think a real Moby is 5-6 yards, but I’m small so I thought I could get away with only 5…plus that’s all I had) and cut it in half “hot dog style” as my kindergarten teacher used to say (length-wise). Viola, 2 faux-Mobys for $5. This fabric does not unravel, so I didn’t have to serge the edges, although I wanted to. I didn’t, though, because I only have white serger thread, and the fabric I used is chocolate brown and I didn’t want that much contrast. Buying brown thread would have added about $20 to the cost of my project, and I liked the sound of just $5 from a few years ago better.

I’m happy to say that with my daily work on this goal of finishing all of these projects my pile is down by half, and I even have one Christmas present almost finished! My goal was New Years to get it all done, and I’m surprised how fast these “5 minutes to finish” projects are just flying out of my sewing room. O, it feels so good!

Big Brother

Elias has been working on some molars. For the most part, besides running around like a madman with his fingers in his mouth, he’s been pretty good about it. Going to sleep has been a bit more tough for him. It takes a bit of Tylenol. Still, there are times when he gets up in the middle of the night crying and just needs to be picked up. He nuzzles his head into my neck, and I hold him in the rocker, and his body goes limp in my arms.

There’s nothing like holding a sleeping baby. Knut and I have kinda an informal system when I take care of a newborn in the middle of the night, and he takes care of the older kids during the night. That way, when I’m getting up every few hours with a newborn, I can sleep straight through one of the older kids having a wet bed, a nightmare, or needing a drink of water. The older ones rarely get up at night, so he’s still doing pretty good as far as workload.

For the most part, I love getting up in the middle of the night to snuggle a baby. I know when I was first a mom, I was so eager to get my baby to sleep through the night. To an extent, I’m pretty sure all moms are eager for some uninterrupted sleep. We’re so eager to them to roll over, and crawl and walk, and even talk. It’s good and normal, I think, to desire to see them develop into the person they were designed to be, but I think with each kid, I have pushed them to these milestones less and less.

If they potty train at 18 months or 4 years old means about a hill of beans in the long run. When they walk, roll over, or sleep through the night means less to me now. I don’t worry because they will do it, and while they’re not doing whatever is the next thing to do, I can enjoy that stage of their babyhood. I don’t know exactly what I’m trying to say.

As I was holding Elias last night, it was way up high on my chest, with his little bum sitting on my big tummy, I was thinking of how life will be different with a new baby. When the new baby comes, Knut will be getting Elias’ midnight snuggles. I’ll be too tired from getting up at night with the new baby. Already, I hold him less during the day, and hold his hand as he’s walking in parking lots and such.

I guess I’m trying to say, I wonder how it’s going to be with a new baby in the house. Silje survived David coming, and David survived Elias coming. I’m sure Elias will survive. Not only that, I think having another sibling will be good for him. It will help develop his character, force him to grow up a bit. O…there we go. My baby will be growing up. He won’t be my baby anymore. Not in the “youngest” sense.

When talking with other moms who are adding their second and third child, and feeling nervous of how it will change their older child’s world, let me say, that anxious feeling is still there for the forth. Even with the full knowledge and experience you’ve had before of everything turning out fine, it’s still bittersweet.

This new little love will be arriving in about 2 months. I’m sure I’ll be overloaded on baby snuggles and midnight feedings. It’s just silly to say that I’ll miss getting up with Elias, as few and far between those times actually are. He’s not going anywhere, just like David and Silje didn’t go anywhere either. I still get to snuggle with each of them.

He’s almost 2 now. I know he’s not a baby anymore even without a new little one coming, but it seems to be so pronounced this way. Everyone notices that he’s getting bigger. We stopped by our favorite ski place the other day to get the kids measured for skis so we could keep our eyes out for the right size of used children’s skis for this winter. As we entered the building, our friend the owner said “Where’s your littlest one?” We pointed at Elias who was tottling all around the room. His eyes got big, and he said “No! This can’t be your little baby!” Yep, he’s getting so big that he’s not even recognized as a little baby anymore. He’s a little boy now.

He likes to do what the big kids are doing all the time. He talks a lot more now, but with his own set of words. For instance, food is “Ummm! Ummm!” and he acts like he’s chomping. Cars are still “Brrmmm Brrmmms” and water or milk has become “Mo Mo.” He still says “no” 100% of the time, which means that 50% of them actually mean “yes.” If you ask him if he wants more, and he says no, and you don’t give him more, he’ll get very upset.

He loves to point out pictures of “Bo” (boats) or “Bi” (bikes). One of my favorites is when he points out a bird and gets an enormous smile on his face and then says in a very high pitched voice “Teet teet! Teet teet!” He “moos” when he sees a cow, and says “woof woof” and then pants when he sees Lena. When she bothers him, he takes out his stern finger and shakes it at her saying “Doe Doe!” which reminds me of Gus from Cinderella.

He says “Haaa ooooo” when he gets a hold of one of our phones, and loves to wave “bye bye” to people. Don’t even get me started on his obsession with wearing shoes all the time. He’ll bring me his “oos” and “ocks” whenever he wakes up. When it’s time to eat, he’ll set down his cars that are always with him on a shelf and say “bye bye, brmm brmms” and then promptly marches to his chair.

Yes, my little boy is getting bigger. I suppose the main thing this new baby will bring to him is the title of “big brother.” He has shown more love to babies than either of the other 2 ever have, and I know he will just dote on his little sister. He doesn’t strike me as a jealous kid, rather very very nurturing.

He’ll be a good big brother. We’ll all be fine. I’m sure of that. In a logical, unemotional way at least. The emotional me is going to snuggle his little body over my big tummy as much as I can

Belly Pics

Since I got my hair cut, actually had at least some make-up on I thought that today would be a good day for Knut to take a belly pic of me. (And of course, Knut had to get a picture of the gorgeous corn field in the background.)

Photobucket
Not too bad for 28 weeks. I’m finally starting to gain some significant weight, and that’s no surprise to me since I’ve been hungry pretty much all day every day. I seem to always gain the vast majority of the weight in the third trimester. I think I about gained the same amount of weight this last month as I have all the previous months of the pregnancy combined. It’s really been tough to keep the kids on their snack/meal schedule when I constantly have food in my mouth. However, if I let them eat food all day, I can’t, because I’m too busy getting it ready for them, cleaning it up after them, and when that’s done and I get to have my portion, another kid comes up and asks for some. So really I’m at the point of either hiding my eating as much as I can from them, and constantly saying no, you have to wait for your snack time. It’s mommy’s snack time now. Actually it’s always mommy’s snack time. I’m such a mean mom.

This baby is extremely active. I feel her move almost constantly. Seriously, I don’t know when she sleeps. She gets the hiccups now a lot too, which is fun. We’re still not any closer on deciding on a name. We’ve narrowed it down to 3, but can’t seem to narrow it any further. We may just wait until she gets here and see if that helps us decide. Names have been moving up and down the list here and there with such fluidity that it may just be the one that happens to be in the #1 spot at the time of her delivery that she ends up with. We’ve never gone to the hospital with more than 2 names on the list, and normally we’re leaning towards one.

Elias was the closest we’ve ever had to an undecided. At the time of his birth, we were 60% leaning towards Elias and 40% towards Ethan. So Elias it was. He pulls the name off pretty well, so I think we did okay. Ironically, Ethan didn’t make it on the list this time if this one were to be a boy. Go figure.

Photobucket
Yup, stickin’ straight out. I’m not really liking how the lady styled my hair today, or maybe that’s just me critiquing pictures of myself. I hate posting pictures of myself. I will anyway. That’s how much I love you guys.