Milk and Food

Definitely still trying to eat enough calories and Brewer’s Yeast…I just made a huge smoothie, complete with organic bananas and strawberries, Stonyfield Farms WHOLE milk yogurt (230 calories/cup!), agave nectar, and, of course, the nasty brown yeast stuff. Yesterday, I had a value bacon cheeseburger meal from Wendy’s, along with an enormous amount of take-out from our Thai restaurant down the street. Trust me when I say this– I am TRYING to eat enough. My mom told me on the phone yesterday, “You may be the first Honeycutt to ever be told to eat more!”

I’ve also been drinking like a race horse, which, inevitably, leads to PEEING like a race horse. Every two hours, to be exact. Lots of tea and water. One mom even gave me some Pedialyte during piano lessons yesterday.

But I’m still not sure if there’s enough milk coming in. Of course, my doubts and fears seem to be sitting right on my shoulder, interpreting every cry from G as starvation. The jury is still out…I’m gonna give this a week, and if I’m not POSITIVE he’s getting enough nutrition to gain weight, we are going to research formula supplementation options, my personal preferences aside. He’s been sleeping well though, at least a 6-7 hr. stretch at night (don’t worry, I pumped in between!) and 2-3 naps during the day. So, if anything, his belly is full enough to sleep well.

So far, we’ve tried Sweet Potatoes, Bananas, and a tiny bit of rice cereal that was incredibly watered down with breastmilk. He likes all of it. He helps me put the spoon in his mouth. It’s messy and getting everywhere (found some orange up his nose today!) but it’s getting in there. And no “icky” poo…yet…

Please pray for us, that all of this gets resolved quickly. I have been telling G, whispering in his ear over and over again for the past couple of days, that he is PERFECT and that Mommy and Daddy love him just the way he is. I know that he has to be picking up on some of the fear and negative energy surrounding this whole eating process, and I don’t want that. Deep down, I want him to feel completely secure in who he is, because even if there is someone to blame for his low weight, it’s me, not him.

 

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eating, eating, eating…

Updates: Since taking tons of Brewer’s Yeast yesterday, my milk has definitely started coming back in, at times, with a vengeance (ouch!). With the exception of a longish stretch during the night (he went to bed at 9pm and didn’t wake until 4am! If I had known how long he was gonna sleep, I would have woken him up sooner), he’s been eating every 1.5-2 hours. Each time, he’s gotten a LOT. How can I tell? For the first time in days, he’s seemed milk drunk…limbs splayed out and limp, happy grin on his face. I’ve been able to hold him afterwards, without him so much as acting hungry for a few hours. I’ve actually been feeding him again before he’s asked for it!

2 tbsp. and 30 capsules later…ugh

We’ll see how long this lasts (my pessimism), because we’re definitely not out of the woods, by any means. I still have a few giant tasks before me, such as making sure to eat at least 2,000 calories, drinking tons of water, and, of course, the gigantic amount of Brewer’s Yeast I have to consume. But it’s been a huge sigh of relief to know that there’s at least something I can do. It confirms for me that Dr. Dennis knows what she’s talking about. And it’s been nice having my happy baby back!

I’ve never been one of those mothers who envisioned breastfeeding exclusively for a year– I told Jesse, before G was even born, that my goal was to make it to 6 months. Anything after that, I said, was icing on the cake. For the first few days/weeks, I didn’t know HOW I was going to last a month, much less half a year! Now that I’ve been at it for 5 1/2 months, however, it’s something I’d be very sad to give up. As much as G “abuses me” while he’s eating (even the Dr. pointed out the major scratch wounds all over my neck!), it’s really bonding and comforting for us both. Sometimes, when G’s upset, all I need to do is hold him close in his “feeding position”, and he calms down. It signals safety and comfort to him, in a way that bottle feeding never has. And, of course, there’s the antibodies aspect, which I definitely want if I’m choosing to wait a year or so on certain vaccines. Other babies could be different, but for G, it’s something he needs– as long as I can keep providing it.

Last night, after Jesse put G to bed, we set about making some baby food. We know that a few spoonfuls/day (the average for a new eater!) is not going to be making a huge dent in his nutritional needs. But it’s a start, and, for whatever reason, the doctor ordered it. Plus, I can’t deny that I’m pretty excited about it!

The whole process of making 8 jars of baby food took less than 15 minutes, so we’ll definitely have time for it. We didn’t use anything fancy– just a food processor and a pot of water to boil the sweet potato (after skinning it, of course). By the way, a shout out to my wonderfully supportive husband. He made sure to periodically hug me at various times the entire evening, saying what a great mom I was and how he couldn’t ask for more. He comforted G for at least an hour while he screamed from exhaustion. He put him to bed while I went to Curves with Julie for some much needed positive energy. Then, he even devoted part of his evening to making baby food with me, after first making sure a “play list” was in order (every song had to do with something “sweet”, such as James Taylor’s “Sweet Potato Pie”). My heart warms, just remembering what a wonderful friend and support he was to me.

My $1 organic sweet potato made 4 tiny jars of baby food. Not bad! And, since it was just pureed sweet potato, Jesse and I were able to snack on the leftovers!

2 organic bananas, for a total of 77 cents, made only 3 jars of baby food. Did you know that bananas taste waaay sweeter when they’re pureed? Yummm!

My baby cubes and tray, a present from Tess

And then, this morning, we did a trial run w G and sweet potatoes! I took one small container out (only halfway filled), microwaved it, mixed it with a tablespoon of pumped breastmilk, and tried to put G into his high chair. No such luck…even though he can sit, he was waaaay to small for it and slid down too far. So, I got out the Bumbo chair.

Unsure of what to make of this…

All done and proud of himself!

Did he like it? At first, he did, grabbing the spoon and helping me put it into his mouth. We actually got a small spoonful or two this way. After that, however, he started shuddering whenever I gave him more. I figured it was time to stop for now 🙂

One of THOSE days

I’m so glad that I was already able to put into words everything that’s been in my head.

Because, wouldn’t you know it. Today was one of those days.

I’d already been dreading this day for a long time. G’s 4 month appt., which was actually taking place at 5 1/2 months. The day where I finally have to make up my mind about his second round of vaccinations, after the miserable experience that was last time. I actually had nightmares about it.

If you remember, I switched Doctors, which is why it took me so long to get into the rotation. Dr. Dennis was highly recommended to me by Courtney, because she is a DO, which means that she is trained in a little bit more of a “whole body” approach to medicine.

Really, finding Dr. Dennis was the only good thing about today. She patiently talked with me for about an hour, never seeming rushed (even though we were 10 min. late for the appt.). She took time to explain each vaccine, reactions she’s seen to various versions of it, which ones she thinks are absolutely necessary, etc. She also took the time to explain homeopathy in more detail (which really helped, since it confirmed everything I’d read online). Together, we decided not to immunize G against Pertussis for now, seeing as this was probably the reason for his bad reaction last time. She said that her granddaughter had the same reaction to the “DTaP, and that once they took out pertussis, she no longer screamed or ran a fever for two days following the vaccination. We also decided that since G is breastfed, I would forgo the Rotavirus vaccine, seeing as she’s had two children in the past year go to the ER with distended intestines as a result. A breastfed baby has a very small chance of getting anything GI tract related, since that’s the very place which breast-milk coats with antibodies. Things like the polio vaccine, she said, are pretty benign, as far as vaccines go, so I got it, along with the rest of the vaccines that the AAP recommends.

But she had some pretty bad news for me. G is not only underweight, as I suspected, he is very underweight. 13 pounds, 5 ounces. That’s under the 5th percentile. By now, she said, he should be close to doubling his birth weight. Instead, he’s only gained 2 pounds in the past 4 months.

Part of the reason is genetics. I love that she took the time to ask about Jesse’s body type so that she could take this into account when determining the problem. He is a very active baby, so his metabolism is going crazy right now. Even while we were talking, he was trying to climb out of my lap so that he could crawl on the floor. I don’t think he stopped moving the entire visit.

But I have noticed that my milk supply has been diminishing. In the beginning, I had too much. Ever since G’s cold, however, I’ve noticed that I have a hard time pumping any extra for piano teaching days. For the past three days or so, I’ve also noticed that he’s still hungry, even after I’ve just fed him.

It became really clear last night. I pumped after G went to bed, as I usually do. When G woke up at 2am, ready for his night feeding, I had nothing. NOTHING. My body just wasn’t producing. I ended up burying my head in the pillow helplessly while Jesse rocked him back to sleep, hungry belly and all. All day today, he hasn’t been latching well, mostly because he’s been acting impatient, as if he’s saying, “where’d it go?”.

It was my worst fear coming true. The moment she said he was very underweight and looking pretty scrawny, I started crying. I realized that deep down, I already knew something needed to change. I knew that G wasn’t getting enough food. But hearing someone else say it stung bad. Luckily, she was very gentle. She asked about my diet, and reminded me to get enough calories and water and to keep taking my prenatal vitamins.

Surprisingly, she didn’t even say the word formula. Instead, she told me to go out immediately and buy Brewer’s Yeast and start taking 3 capsules/day. She said it was the quickest way she knew to increase milk supply. She also said to start him on solid food immediately, slowly starting with the yellow/orange veggies, going for fatty things like avocado soon.

After his vaccinations (Julie came with me for support, which we realized was a bad idea, seeing as she faints when she gets shots or has her blood drawn!), I dropped Julie off at her car and headed straight for the Sunflower Shoppe around the corner from our house. Brewer’s Yeast only comes in powder form, so I also bought vegetarian capsules to put it in, seeing as the taste is supposedly terrible. On Dr. Dennis’ recommendation, I also bought him homeopathic belladonna tablets, seeing as all of Hyland’s Teething Tablets have been taken off the market (mainly, because the FDA doesn’t understand that homeopathic is not the same as actually containing the herb!). She would prefer me use these instead of chalking him full of Tylenol for the pain. She also told me to tie a small washcloth in a knot, soak it, then freeze it. He can hold the ends of the washcloth while chewing on the frozen part in the middle.

I ended up cancelling all of my piano lessons for the day and going over to hang out with Courtney until Jesse got home. I was too emotionally shot to think of leaving my baby (who was screaming, by that time, from lack of food mostly), plus, I couldn’t burden Courtney with him right now. Turns out, it was a good move– once Jonathan and Topher were awake, all 3 kids took turns being fussy and crying! Too much for one person! I made my yeast tablets, took one, and nursed G. When he was still fussy, Courtney graciously heated up 3 oz. of her own stored milk. G gobbled it down and for the first time in days, actually acted full!

Jesse is now home from work, and so we are tag-teaming the still screaming baby. At this point, I don’t think it’s a reaction to the vaccines– he’s only slept a total of an hour today, so he’s EXHAUSTED. We have a few jars of organic baby food given to me at one of my showers, so we have that for now. I will also be trying my hand at making a few different kinds of baby food tonight.

Thanks for all the kind words and comments. It really means the world to know that there are other moms out there, going through some of the same things as me.

 

Update later in the evening: Turns out, the serving size for the Brewer’s Yeast is 2 tbsp. It took me 30 capsules to get all of that! 100 empty capsules was $6…don’t think I can keep this up! As an experiment, Jesse made me a smoothie with 1 tbsp. of the Yeast. Although not Jamba Juice, for a health smoothie it was pretty good! Two bananas, blueberries, a serving of Greek yogurt, the Brewer’s Yeast, plus a tbsp. of the Agave Nectar for yumminess. 450 calories later…definitely beats the 1/2 hr. it took me stuff 30 capsules!

Apparently, I’ve lost another pound since last week. I am now betting that part of the problem is I’m not consuming enough calories. So I also drank a beer tonight. And ate an entire chicken breast. Hopefully, these mega smoothies will help!

Some thoughts on motherhood

This post was brought about as a combination of two things: 1. thoughts I’ve been having lately, and 2. a response to a friend of mine who commented recently.

One of the biggest struggles I’ve faced as a mother is the intense desire to pity myself. I am NOT a selfless person, by any stretch of the imagination. On a good day, being a mom is challenging. I like challenges, especially if they can be overcome. It’s permanently ingrained in me.

On the BAD days, however, the Pity Monster is waiting. I just want to curl up into a ball and close my eyes until it all goes away. The thought is constantly popping up in my head: “This is NOT your life! How can this be your life? How did you let it get to this? You deserve so much better!”

What I’ve come to realize, is that the extent to which the day was hard does not directly correlate with how hard the day was! In some ways, in fact, the difficult days are easier, because I feel justified in saying, “Yup. This sucks.” For example, the last few days, I’ve been dealing NONSTOP with poop and vomit. Last week, G had 2 poop blowouts/day, along with Claire vomiting and having bloody diarrhea all over the house (and my foot…ugh). For some reason, while I was temporarily exasperated by the whole thing, I wasn’t undone. I felt okay. Sure, I gladly accepted Jesse’s offer to finish bathing the dog for me (she had been rolling in her own feces, so she was DISGUSTING), but I didn’t feel like I was at the breaking point.

But there are other days when I feel as though life is just too difficult. It can be something as simple as G dropping his pacifier for the upteenth time.

And I feel the Pity Monster creeping in.

It causes me to stop relating with others around me. Jesse says, “Whew! I am Sooo tired!” and I give him a glare and launch into how I was up all night with G, he has NO RIGHT to talk! Courtney tries to say that Jonathan only took three naps that day, and I interject how I would kill for that. Instead of being able to hear other people and accept their struggles as valid, I can only hear the din of my own thoughts, telling me that my pain is sooo much worse than anyone else’s. Not only that, but my pain can often become more precious to me than these relationships. It’s almost like I’m saying, “Don’t you DARE try to take away my pain!” because if someone discredits it, I feel as though I’ll be exposed as a failure.

I think that mothers are very prone to this feeling. We are each deeply attached and connected to the way in which we parent, because it isn’t just a job description, it’s a calling. When that baby enters the world, a whole new level of love and commitment opens up. Naturally, how one first comes to know and navigate this new world is of first rate personal importance. Every mom wants to share the details of how they did it, because they can’t help but fixate on it. Who wouldn’t? Life, as we knew it, has changed forever.

Naturally, as a result of being so wrapped up, it’s difficult to see the forest through the trees. Every problem becomes a huge deal. Many emotions are overblown (this could also be due to the sleep deprivation). Add in the hormones, and sanity is all but a distant memory. (Disclaimer: I am not trying to say that the reason Moms have hard days is only because their emotions are out of whack.  I love it when Jesse has a chance to “play mom” for a day– he always comes out of it with a greater appreciation for how much work it is to care for a baby!)

What I AM trying (ever so feebly) to say, is that a natural result of all this is that Mothers can feel very alone. They spend all day, fixated on a million tiny details that don’t mean a thing to the average Joe, but mean EVERYTHING to them and the well-being of their baby. A stay-at-home mom has this double-fold, especially if they were accustomed to being out in the world, amongst others every day. Ever wonder why so many moms blog? They’re LONELY! You would be too, if you spent all day with a little person who can’t speak!

I think that the Pity Monster feeds voraciously on this lonely, myopic Mom. If you already feel separated, in large, from the rest of society, then it is merely a tiny step towards feeling like your pain, your struggles, are worse than anyone else’s. How hard the problem actually is, at this point, is irrelevant. Anything, even something small like dropping a pacifier on the ground, will encourage the Pity Monster.

I write all this because it’s something I’ve been struggling with a lot over the past few months. Giving in to pity, even for a split second, pulls me into a despair vortex like no other. In an effort to stay sane and not let the drudgery of the day to day hardships get to me, I’ve taken the offensive approach– combat these feelings with humor and optimism. Even if G only smiles once, I take that and run with it. Even if he’s screaming his head off at me, I talk away happily back at him. If he’s screaming and nothing I do helps, I leave him in his crib and try to get something productive done in the kitchen. That way, I am at least distracting myself from the lurking pity and despair.

Really, there’s not much else I can do. If the kid is gonna scream, I think, the only thing that I can control in this moment is my response.

I haven’t built up the nerves to withstand days upon days of incessant screaming, because, thank God, I haven’t had to. God has allowed me to dodge quite a few bullets thus far in my short time as a parent. Perhaps those same bullets are waiting for me later on down the road. I have no way of knowing. I can’t control it.

But I can control my response and fight hard to keep everything in perspective. Remembering my priorities also helps, because who cares if I have a clean house but my child is neglected and miserable? Who cares if I checked off every box on my chore list, but am too tired to relax with Jesse in the evenings?

My response to these things is all that matters, because it’s all that God has given me to control. Maybe when I’m done solving that, I can move on to World Peace 🙂

Loft Living

Um, how cool would it be to live here?? Seriously considering it right now!

Psalms

I was reminded of this beautiful Psalm as I was reading a friend’s blog the other day:

Psalm 3:3-5
When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away
Through my groaning all day long.
For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me;
My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer.
I acknowledged my sin to You,
And my iniquity I did not hide;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord”;
And You forgave the guilt of my sin.

It’s so good to be reminded of Confession, and why it’s so good for us. I should definitely be going more often– even when I acknowledge my sins/faults to myself, it’s totally different than repenting before God. Repentance is one of the most important aspects of a Christian life– daresay, more important than “being a good person”. Repentance involves acknowledging where we are weak, where we need Christ, but it also involves rooting the sin out of your life. It can’t just be an apology– repentance HAS to involve change. It’s essential to loving God, which is the first commandment.

The last line really stands out to me: “you forgave the guilt of my sin”. As a Protestant, I was always taught to believe that this “guilt” the Psalmist is referring to is the damning effect of sin. By forgiving my guilt, God is allowing me to go to heaven one day, removing that sin from His perception of me.

While I’m really NOT in the mood to go all “Orthodox vs. Protestant” (really), I would like to offer a second read, one that I think is extremely important on a practical level.

The “guilt” of my sin could also (especially in this context) be referring to the effect that sin has on us in the here and now. It’s heavy, it hurts. People who fail to confess their sins on a regular basis literally fall apart physically, because the spiritual and the physical body are inextricably linked. When our soul is sinning, our body pays the price. When we fail to confess our sins, our body can’t handle it. The Psalmist says it well: “My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer “. It’s not quite right to say, “I feel as though a weight was just lifted off of my shoulders!”– once the guilt is gone, a weight literally HAS been lifted off!

But most people, most Christians even, don’t confess their sins on a consistent basis. I’m not talking only about capital “C” Confession, and I’m definitely not talking about “accountability groups”, which, let’s face it, don’t really work. As a result, most people walk around with this build-up of guilt. Layers and layers, born from years and years of sinning without true repentance. Many make New Years Resolutions and attempt to change the sin before ever confessing it. Doesn’t work. Changing the outside action doesn’t get rid of the layers of guilt, it just keeps one from adding additional filth.

I think this is why so many in our society feel the need to self-medicate. They are running from the filthy layers that have accumulated and are weighing them down. I know people who can’t sleep without having music or the tv on. A good majority of the people I know are incredibly busy. Who do you know who HASN’T seen a therapist? How many people do we know with addictions? How many people skip apologizing and instead just try to jump straight to “changing”?  Everyone has a “go to” place to escape the guilt.

A friend of ours said this at lunch yesterday: “People are used to ‘hearing God’ in the earthquake, in the crisis. What about the ‘still, small voice’?” It’s true– why are people so afraid of silence? So unable to spend 10 minutes, just sitting– no book, no radio, no conversation, no task. Seriously, when’s the last time you saw someone do that?

My go-to addiction, sadly, is self reliance. I know whenever I’m trying to control EVERYTHING that I’m actually running away from repentance. Running away from confessing certain favorite sins of mine. Currently? My “favorite” sin is being judgmental. ALL. THE. TIME. I should be going to confession every day for this– it’s a definite constant battle. The moment I let myself dwell on even ONE judgmental thought, it takes root, and for the rest of the day I’m fighting a constant war within myself not to think bad things about others. It takes vigilant effort to keep this from happening.

Please pray for me, a sinner, as I prepare for Confession sometime this week. I’ve been going to Pre-Sanctified Liturgy on Wednesdays and Fridays, as well as our usual Sunday liturgy, but most of the time I’m in the choir singing or helping Jesse take care of G. Not much time for Confession! Luckily, Jesse’s told me that he also needs to go sometime this week. Perhaps we can devote one service entirely to this. I hate to go on Saturday “just to do confession”– wouldn’t want to be one of “those” families! (again, my judgmental thoughts!!!)

This Time Last Year

I’m officially in trouble. For a whole week now, I’ve been fighting the desire to have another baby. I know, already!

It doesn’t help that exactly a year ago today, we announced that we were pregnant.

G has difficult days, sure, every baby does. I think that it’s sometimes easy for Moms to feel like “their kid” is the exception, the super difficult high maintenance one, but I just don’t get that. ALL babies teeth. ALL babies have some difficulty taking naps or sleeping through the night. For me, knowing it’s something that everyone goes through makes me feel better, especially on nights where his teeth/gums hurt so bad he screams for a few hours.

So, what I’m trying to say is that this desire for another baby does NOT come from thinking that “this whole baby thing is so easy now!”. Quite the opposite– lately, I’ve felt quite incompetent and behind.

But I love it. I love being G’s mom. And I can already tell that I have way too much love for just one baby. If we keep going at this rate, he’ll be spoiled rotten!

As I dream about a potential future, the day when we ACTUALLY get to settle down somewhere, the day when I get to start homeschooling them (perhaps), I picture more than one kid. More than two. Possibly, more than three. I want a house full of them, even though I know that will come with more than the fair share of crazy messes, accidents and imperfections.

Luckily for Jesse (who’s still not used to having the ONE kid), I still haven’t gotten back the ability to get pregnant, if you know what I mean. Like I said before, though, it’s been nearly a year and a half since I’ve had a period! Apparently, this is pretty common for moms who are breastfeeding exclusively around the clock. It’s a good reminder that children are a gift, not a right. I don’t get to decide when the next kid shows up– God does.

So, until then, I will just live vicariously through all of my friends who are having babies. I am on facebook/blog watch for at least 3 right now. Our good friend, Katie Gaspard just had her beautiful baby girl, Victoria Margaret, a little under two weeks ago, so that’s one down.

Now, it’s time to go tend to my “screaming bundle of joy” who just WILL NOT take his afternoon nap!! 🙂

Playtime

G loves playing with his Daddy 🙂

Indoor Pollution

Warning: Green Jihad alert 🙂 But perhaps you should hear it out, for the sake of your health!

As G gets more mobile, I’ve been researching how to make my own cleaning products. I’ve seen too many articles on how bad the harsh chemicals in most store-bought products are (yes, even the “green” ones at Target). I’ve always known that once G is crawling around, drinking bath water, etc. that things should be clean. But I never realized that the very same cleaning agents keeping away harmful bacteria (read: Claire feces) could also be hurting him! Bleach residue, for example, is HIGHLY toxic, especially for young kids. Almost all cleaning products also contain ethylene-based glycol, which is classified by the EPA as a hazardous air pollutant.

Cleaning products are one of the reasons indoor pollution is starting to exceed the outdoor! From Web MD: But the truth is, the air inside homes, offices, and other buildings can be more polluted than the air outside. The air inside your home may be polluted by lead (in house dust), formaldehyde, fire-retardants, radon, even volatile chemicals from fragrances used in conventional cleaners. Some pollutants are tracked into the home. Some arrive via a new mattress or furniture, carpet cleaners, or a coat of paint on the walls.

Radon, a known carcinogen, is responsible for 20,000 lung cancer deaths/year. According to the EPA, based on a national residential radon survey completed in 1991, the average indoor radon level is about 1.3 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) in air in the United States. The average outdoor level is about 0.4 pCi/L. Apparently, houses act as a vacuum, drawing radon in from the foundation and soil around it. Radon is also released into the air from the water when one showers. I can’t let myself be terribly worried about this, simply because we don’t OWN our residence. All we can do is make sure we ventilate our rooms with plenty of fresh air.

Until we own a home, there’s nothing I can do about the fact that most paint is bad for a baby’s room (the only kind that ISN’T has to be specially ordered online. Just because the “paint” smell is gone doesn’t mean the fumes are!). If I’m gonna have to repaint it when we move out in a couple months, I’m NOT spending $45/gallon on non-toxic wall paint. We’ll just have to make sure G’s room is well-ventilated.

But there are things we can do to reduce our indoor air pollution (North Americans spend 69-90% of their time indoors). It’s one of the reasons why I’ve always tried to have lots of indoor plants. It’s also one of the reasons I’m so thrilled about trying to find a place with wood floors– I simply don’t have the money for a fancy steam clean vacuum. Wood floors are extremely easy to keep clean, and the only rugs I’ll buy will be 100% machine washable (who in their right mind would buy an expensive rug when they are planning on lots of kids? Have you seen that Modern Family episode?). I’m also going to institute a “no-shoes” policy at our next place. I don’t want my sons hands and face in a pile of e-coli bacteria.

That’s why I’ve decided to figure out how to make my own cleaning supplies. Most involve pretty cheap ingredients, such as white vinegar and baking soda. I have no idea how they work yet, especially when it comes to disinfecting a bathroom. You may not believe this, but the first time I cleaned a bathroom was when I lived in Stewart Hall at Biola!! You could say I was spoiled, and I definitely was when it came to not having to do chores, but I just happen to have a really selfless Momma 🙂

Anybody got any tried and true recipes/concoctions they want to share? Please!

BUSY day!

This morning, after teaching 3 hours of piano lessons (Jenny Folsom watched G, seeing as Jesse also had to work a few hours– she did a GREAT job!), I got caught in the worst traffic jam EVER. Major construction has been taking place on an interchange right near us– the same one that both Jesse and I need to traverse in order to get to our jobs.

The construction has now taken an agressive turn– they demolished an overpass today.

Only one of 3 lanes was open on the freeway. This interchange is where THREE FREEWAYS intersect. It’s also 1 mile away from DFW airport. It’s one of the busiest stretches of road in all of Dallas/Fort Worth, and that’s on a GOOD day.

Totally forgot to avoid it. Ever wish you could go back in time?

I was sitting in the parking lot that was the freeway for 1.5 hours!! Ick!

It got pretty entertaining, though. People were getting really really ugly, the longer they had to wait. Picture this– 2 miles of cars at an absolute stand still. Suddenly, one of them decides to dart into the shoulder and speed ahead of everyone…only to still be at a standstill for twenty minutes, just a hundred yards down, with everyone honking their horns at him. This became a regular enough occurrence that the shoulder just became an extra lane (again, NO ONE WAS MOVING, SO WHAT WAS THE POINT?). One mail truck became so sick of it, that when we DID move a few feet forward (I was getting a car-length/10 minutes), he moved INTO the shoulder, blocking it off completely. That didn’t stop angry drivers, no sir–ee! They just went into the median ditch, barely avoiding a collision with the wall. Others forged their own roads up steep grass hills on the other side of the freeway, hoping to join in with the busy 3 lane frontage road there. It was nuts!

Once I got through, I found solace in retail therapy at Plato’s Closet and Target. Didn’t spend much, but had a good time. That was when I realized that it had been 6 hours since I’d nursed G! I’d left plenty of pre-pumped milk for Jenny and Jesse to feed him, but I knew it was time to get home.

Luckily, when I arrived, Jesse and G were both taking an afternoon nap together. I decided not to wait and pumped over 8 ounces!! I was crazy full. Sorry, mommies out there know what I mean. Let me put it this way— when G woke up, he only needed half of that for his meal. The other half, I was able to store in our fridge for Jesse to feed him next week while I teach.

After I pumped and ate an ENTIRE box of mac and cheese (not too healthy…) I went to do our grocery shopping at Aldi. On the way home, I picked up some pictures I’d ordered at walgreens.com and filled the car up with gas.

Once I got home, I made myself eggs for dinner (healthy! yes!). Jesse and I then decided to take a walk with G around our complex. We loaded him into the stroller, and off we went!

After we got back, we put G to bed and I went running on the treadmill in the gym.

Now, I am FINALLY relaxing. Jesse is over at the Unruhs, smoking with Michael.

All in all, it was great getting out of the house for a day!