Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The new sandbox.

Pretty Cute.... and nice flowers. Team.
Yeah! Clap your hands.
See me play in the sand and NOT EAT IT???

This is her Innocent Look.

Looking at Clouds

Look Mama, I treed a bird!!!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Because he'll look cute in a black and white striped onsie.....

It's always a Bad Thing when you see a name and think, "Oh, cute baby name... must remember" and then realize you are reading the Correctional Offender Network site.

Friday, May 11, 2007


This one is for Pickle....

We are (if, ya know, we ever get our teeny new bedroom done) going to do Darling Girl's room in vintage cowgirl/farmkid. I can't afford the stuff on the web but I'm going to scan photos from old nursery books, print them on the computer & frame them with dollar store frames....

And we have the booger beds.... twin beds/bunk beds with wagon wheel headboards. They were, honest-to-jeebus, my uncle's when he was a kid. How much more vintage can you get?? But we need to firm them up and put more slats under them because they can be, um, collapsible at the, um, most unfortunate times...... if you know what I'm saying....

Some paint. Oh lordie... what color? Here we go again.....

Put some cowgirl fabric up for curtains and throw in some Nick-n-Nora cowboy sheets from Target and call it decorated.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Several Thoughts....

Sweet Boy says (in that peculiar way he has... with heavy-long emphasis on the first B), "Daddy, why don't we have any Barbies??"

Daddy, "Uh, Boys don't play with barbies."

SB, "Yes they DO. I play with barbies at Daycarista's house. She have boy barbies and girl barbies. Paige likes the boy barbies and So. Do. I."

Daddy, "Boy barbies are called Action Figures."

Huh. Guess that makes it all ok.


So I'm thinking about gender-roles... blah, blah, blah.

I was a bit uncomfortable when Darling Girl got a pink princess "my first book of words" book for Easter. I'm not particularly a Disney-hater (although I'd rather eat green glass than be caught dead in a theme park with an oversized rat) but I do understand the argument against "princess culture" or whatever you want to call it.

Here at the Homestead we try to be fair. But you have to remember it is Redneck-Fair. Boys can play dolls, dress up and tea party but you will probably hear the male contingent refer to it as "action figures, costumes and camping" so as to maintain the appropriate level of manliness.

Of course, the flip side is girls can play race cars, swords and cowboys but you will probably hear it referred to as "choking hazards, getting whacked with a wrapping paper tube and oh-shit-SB-is-sitting-on-his-sister-yelling-yee-haw-again."

I heard an interview with an 80-something pediatrician on NPR this morning (Yes, even Rednecks listen to NPR) and he said the most important thing you can teach your kids is resiliency.

So for this mother's day I'm going to set aside goals of perfection and reflections of guilt and just work towards teaching myself and my kids to be resilient.

Naked in the Light.

I confess. I have 5 pairs of khaki capris.

In light of the fact that putting a closet under the stairs in our "new" tiny bedroom will cost, oh, about $3000 dollars.... well, I've decided the best idea is to get rid of all my clothes.

So I started through my closets.

Now, let me set the stage.

I have 2 closets. One has a 54" rod and one has a 36" rod. Both are tucked under the eaves so they are very short. I know... any of you living in an old house are already jealous.... because I actually HAVE a closet.... well, soon, no more.

I also have a dresser with 2 large drawers (one for socks and unmentionables and one for jammies and workout clothes). I have a small plastic tub for winter gear, a plastic drawer for swimwear and various other unmentionables and a stack of about 8 sweatshirts.

All this has to fit into.... nothing. No closet.

Ok, well, the 36" rod closet has 60 white plastic hangers containing knit shirts.... t-shirts, long sleeved t's, sleeveless.... surely some of those can go, right? And pants... I've weeded out a lot of my black pants... well, actually, all but one pair. So that's a start. I have 3 pairs of wear-to-work jeans.... but one pair is pretty ratty so they can be retired. I have 4 pairs of weekend jeans.... surely one of those can go. I trashed all of my old workout t-shirts..... I don't work out anymore so why bother? I can get rid of a lot of shorts if I can find 1-2 pairs of decent ones to replace them. I should get rid of some jammies... I have more jammies than anything... pretty funny for someone who prefers to sleep in the buff, eh?

Ok, people, how many and what types of clothing do you have? What do you really need? And what do you really wear??
Best baby gift idea I've seen in a while.....

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Overheard at The Homestead:

Our neighbor is mowing his lawn.
His mower is bigger than yours.

I don't really love oak cabinets.

I have a tiny addiction to and their nursery site.
Why? I don't have an apartment. My decorating style is trying-to-avoid-clutter-and-failing or trying-to-pick-a-paint-color-and-failing.
We have a little-little interior remodel going on that will leave us with a small living room and a 10x12 bedroom with no closet.... seems ideal, no?
So I was thinking as long as we are going to truly do this to add a bedroom I might as well get serious (finally.... it HAS been 3 years) about painting. I love to paint. I hate picking the color.
And if I'm painting I really should re-think the accessories in the room to get that more modern and serene look I'm going for..... Modern Primitive. That's my style.
And I want bookshelves. Because most of our books are in big rubbermaid tubs in the feed-shed turned storage-shed/closet.

But anyway.
I snapped a photo of my kitchen and realized I have the perfect accessory. It's one-of-a-kind and fits my decorating style perfectly.

In case you can't tell:

This photo was taken on "the day from hell" actually. 72 hours of almost constant body contact with me, her favorite teething object. Seriously. The only time I could put her down was in the water in the kitchen sink (see my baking). Otherwise:

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Because what would the weekend be without movies?

Night at the Museum. I will admit I don't usually like Ben Stiller. Sorry, I don't. But this movie was pretty cute and Sweet Boy absolutely loved it. And I'm all about movies we can watch as a family. And I don't care what you say.... my son is brilliant. At one point he looked at me and said, "Mom, does that dinosaur think he's a DOG???" Oh, we've been having fun with that the last few days... pretending we are dinosaur-dogs and dinosaur-cats and dinosaur-frogs... because, really, what is more fun than hopping around and roaring??

Deja vu. Denzel. Need I say more??

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Earnest Mommy Strikes Again....

I need to have an earnest mommy moment here.

The last time I had a real blow-out one over potty seats.... the kid promptly quit needing the Dora seat and, last I checked, was perfectly capable of using the toilet without a step stool or cartoon character throne.

My, er, production is down.

Background: With Sweet Boy I pumped 3 times a day at work and if I didn't get 12-15 ounces a day I was a freakin' wreck. With Darling Girl I pump twice a day on work days and hope for about 10-12 ounces a day. If I need to "catch up" I will toss in an extra 3-4 ounce session on the weekends. She eats more solids and just doesn't need as much milk at daycare it seems.

But my Bessie-sessions lately have been yielding about 6 ounces a DAY and, while I have lots of frozen stock pile, I am starting to worry. She's 9.5 months so I guess she could wean but I'd rather not.... she is already slimming down with all the crawling she does... once she is walking she will need all the extra calories she can get.... my little turbo-girl.

I changed the valves on the pump.... always the first thing you should do... it's like checking to make sure the computer is plugged in before calling customer service.

I added at least 16 additional ounces of water to my day. I already drink a ton of water naturally and breast feeding makes me drink a ton more.... seriously, when I came back to work our water guy even commented on it.... we use 2 additional 5 gallon bottles when I'm around....

Then I started drinking a cup of mother's milk tea every afternoon. Two days into that and, maybe it is psychosomatic, but things are picking up.... it tastes like what I imagine licking the cat's ass would taste like but whatever.... I'll make any sacrafice for motherhood and blah, blah, blah..... Besides... you can make anything taste better if you put in enough milk & sugar.....

I haven't gotten so bad that I'm taking Fenugreek yet (although I tried that with Sweet Boy) but I am considering it. Again with the.... maybe it is psychosomatic.... and I do believe it makes your sweat smell like maple.... but, hey, I don't mind smelling like the back booth at IHOP if it means (insert noble sacrifice everything mama tone here) my child can be on the boob a few more months (read: I'm too cheap to buy formula).

So take a note Sarah (oh and did you see the colace, perineal massage & witch hazel comments in the last post?? I recommend them all... even though I don't like the smell of witch hazel) here are the things to stash in your mommy arsenal should you find yourself needing them: Mother's Milk Tea (Traditional Medicinals I think? They also make "Smooth Move" if you find the colace isn't doing it for you....) and Fenugreek capsules. There is a 'scription medicine that has an off-label use as a production booster but I can't remember what it is....

Gosh... with my teas & herbals and my holistic Hyland's teething tablets and my last post about not using toilet cleaner.... ya'll will be thinking I'm all green and tree-huggery and stuff.... I better go spray something with Round Up or bleach or something..... and hide my Birkenstocks.....

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

There should be a 12-step program, I swear.

It really is a sickness. The budget. It's like I have obsessive-compulsive binge-n-purge budgeting habits.

I was so proud I only spent $50 at the bull's-eye store last month... and then, this weekend, we dropped $100 there**.... and then.... we went to Shopko and spent TWENTY DOLLARS on a pair of sandals for Sweet Boy. TWENTY DOLLAR SANDALS. (Any applications I had in to be in those cool mommy gangs were just REJECTED.)

I make shopping lists and then decide -mid-store- that "We don't really need that." Right. We don't really need pit stick... let's just go all free and natural and jungle and native.... skip the razor blades & shaving gel too. We can brush with baking soda... it's good enough for Grandpa so it is good enough for us.... heck, we're rednecks let's just skip the toothbrushes too.

Hello. My name is Homestead and I have walked out of stores without half the things on my list because I can't stand to spend the money.

Wait. I must pause mid-rant to say this.... We don't use toilet bowl cleaner. It is bad for the dog and it is bad for the kids. The kids who clean the toilet. What? Your 2-year-old doesn't clean your toilet? Then you, my friend, are doing something wrong. Toss in a little vinegar & baking soda, call it a science project and let the little fiends scrub away. Seriously. They are so fascinated by the toilet they want to play in it all the time? Let them. I say... why fight nature?

I wake up late at night worrying about budgets. (Nah, that's not true.... I wake up late at night with strange cravings for powdered-sugar donuts.... but rarely do I wake up obsessed about how much they would cost..... it just sounds so nice and dramatic.....)

And the returns. This makes my husband crazy. Please tell me other seemingly sane people do this?!?! Buy things. Take them home. Decide you can't afford them or can't stand the clutter. Return them.

My life took a big turn for the better in October when I swore off Target clearance end-caps (unless I really, really need it) and gave in to my list-making ways and just kept a running list of "things we need should you see them on a great sale" and wrote down the amounts we will spend on various holidays (Hot Stuff is the master of the last-minute $100 Father's Day gift.... No. No. No. Not in this budget) and birthdays and then let myself thrill in the hunt.

Yes... the hunt. I love the bargain and I love finding it. (Thank you Grandma, bless your soul.) I've just managed to trick my brain into thinking getting the slipcover (I've been shopping for 3 years now...) I love (Pottery Barn) cheap on Ebay somehow makes me superior to all those fools who pay retail. I also like to look down my nose and feel superior about reduced clutter and how much more earth-friendly it is to not buy things. Oh, hell, I just like to feel superior....

Hot Stuff got me a power ball ticket (a week early) for Mother's Day and if I win that 68 million.... THEN what's gonna happen??

**I did, however, buy TWO booster carseats, stuff for our trip the end of May (window roller shades, travel aquadoodle, travel pillows) and my ONLY impulse buy was a $1.14 batman toothbrush.


So Mary P. hosted a book love-in for the month of April. In case you were interested in what we’re reading here at the Homestead…. I thought I’d just quickly type up my list. It isn’t long. And. I. Can’t. Remember. What. I. Read. This. Month. At all.

So, um, here’s the short version….

To the Nine’s –Janet Evanovich
The 9th (imagine that) in a series about Stefanie Plum…. So easy to read.

Full Tilt –Janet Evanovich
Another one by Janet. Really, I just read this one because I knew it would be quick and it would boost my book-count. Hee-hee.

The Fiery Cross –Diana Gabaldon
I finally finished it. I’ve been working my way slowly through this one for a long time. I like her “Scottish Sci Fi” books but I have to take them slowly over time or I get bored. And I’m still boggled by how you spell fiery.

Lord John & the Private Matter –Diana Gabaldon
I didn’t finish this one. I like this character in the other books but this book just didn’t do it for me.

Something by Sandra Brown. You know. Something.

How to Organize Just About Everything (again… the title??) by some guy who is on a popular tv show we don’t get. But I liked the book…. More of a reference book for most but I read it cover-to-cover.

Some cheesy Louis L’amour paperback I read while at my parent’s house.

The tooth section of The Portable Pediatrician AND What to Expect During the First Year. Seriously. Because isn’t it odd my daughter’s top SIDE teeth came in before the front ones??

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

The Weekend In Movies

Smokin' Aces: Brutally violent and hilarious. How's that? Loved this but I realize it might not be for everyone.

Stranger Than Fiction: Lovely little flick. Cute. Easy to understand. Will Ferrell playing an IRS auditor... which is.... interesting.