May 31, 2012

Do You Experience Mother's Intuition?

I hear my baby cry (in my head) right before she actually cries in real life. This has happened on several occasions since she was born. We have some eerie, unexplainable, mother-daughter connection. I'm sure you have heard the phrase, "Mother's Intuition". Let me tell you that there is no way to describe what it is happening so you will just have to take my word. It exists. I'm not sure if fathers experience something similar but this connection is genuine and not limited to just genetics.  

Earlier today I experienced this connection (for the hundredth time). We were both enjoying a lovely afternoon nap. I semi-woke up and just laid in bed until I heard my baby cry in my mind. A split second later, my baby woke up and cried. A SPLIT SECOND LATER.

This happens so often!

Usually I wake up from a dead sleep early, early in the morning and think about her crying. A split second later, she cries. She doesn't always wake up to stay up, but she will cry and wake me up (before actually crying) and fall right back asleep. It is the strangest thing ever. I find it very fascinating. My husband tried telling me that my baby had already been crying, which is why I thought about it... and then the baby cried a second time. Bologna. That is not what happened.

I ain't be no charlatan fool! 

I have a superpower that was given to me at the time of my daughter's conception. Okay, so the exact time is debatable but even before I saw the two lines on the pregnancy test, I knew I was pregnant. I KNEW IT. Sometimes, mothers just know and there is no scientific explanation for it. Let's leave it at that and enjoy our special bond we have with our children.

Has my experience happened to you? Feel free to leave your own personal stories in the comments below. I find this subject highly interesting!

May 30, 2012

How to Keep Your Baby Still During a Diaper Change

Do you have a baby that refuses to sit still during a diaper change?

It really is a silly game that babies like to play with us parents.

It all starts when your baby starts begging for her diaper to be changed. She looks at you, whines, and then spitefully squishes her poopy diaper against the floor until it oozes all the way up her back. You gasp and hurriedly pick her up. You TRY to change her diaper just like she wants but as soon as you lay her down and undo her diaper she screams, flails her arms and legs, and then rolls over desperately trying to crawl away from you. You see how this is a funny game?

You basically end up having poop all over your hands, arms, floor, baby's legs, feet, and body. I'm not exaggerating even a little bit. In fact, I left out the fact that your baby's entire outfit is now ruined for the day, possibly forever. It's disgusting and I'm sure if you have a ten month old baby, you know exactly what I'm talking about.

So as routine, you grab the nearest toy or even your own cellphone or nasty keys she always insists on sucking on and hand it to her to play with. You just need to keep her distracted for about 20 seconds while you quick clean her up and throw on a fresh diaper. But of course, your baby has no interest in these things at this particular moment. Again starts the flailing and you frantically yell for your husband, "BILLLLLL! HELLLLPPP MEEE!!!" He panics and runs over to you. His stomach turns as he notices the poop splattered over everything in the surrounding vicinity. He catches the baby's arms and holds her down while she screams bloody murder...

Diaper changes should not be that stressful. Oh my gosh...

So as you would expect, several diaper changes later I had had enough! I accidentally did the thing that will forever keep my baby still while changing her diaper.

Take a look.

This is how to keep your baby still during a diaper change!!!!
I'm not joking, this works every time I change Miss A's diaper. I pin her down and sit on her backwards (without putting my weight on her of course). She instantly starts laughing and patting my butt. This is sooo funny to her. Really, it's the funniest thing that has ever happened to her. Look at that face. While she is giggling (and still flailing her arms), I have plenty of time to peacefully change her diaper without worry of a natural disaster.

Yes it is a little difficult to change a baby's diaper upside down at first, but I know you will master the skill quickly.

Warnings: BE SMART. Do not put your weight on your baby. Do not sit on your baby's mouth. Do not sit on your baby period.... If your baby does not like this method of distraction, DON'T DO IT. You are doomed and stuck with a flailing, runaway, poop-butt baby!

Best of luck to you! :D

Daydream of Becoming a Farmer

If there is one thing I love about my small town in west Michigan, it's watching the breeze slightly roll across the many rows of farmland behind the main strip of town. We went on an hour long bike ride today along the back roads and it was very peaceful. Miss A was being a sweet little girl riding behind me silently playing with her toys. Bill was up ahead. My eyes drifted to the fields of young grains and some kind of row crop just beginning to sprout. It was then when I instantly got lost in a daydream of becoming a farmer.
I'd grow wheat and other grains and learn to make my own bread. I'd grow several different fruits and vegetables... peppers of every color, some spicy, some not... several tomatoes, corn, a variety of herbs... I've always loved the fall festivities so I'd definitely grow pumpkins, squash, and other random gourds. If I grew those then I'd definitely have to become a beekeeper to get my favorite thing in the world-- honey. Alongside the garden and away from the bees, I'd have to have my own cow or two for milk and hopefully learn to produce cream and butter as well. Not sure the whole process for that but if I had a cow, I'd have to grow hay using its manure to fertilize the crops... Watching a plant's first sprout to blooming and producing its fruit is actually quite fascinating... Then of course you're rewarded for all your hard work and effort with delicious homegrown meals and a surplus of food for the next seasons. 
You can tell I'm good at romanticizing simple things in life. Though I have always been in love with nature, I have never truly understood the beauty of farmlands until today. All that hard work put onto a piece of land to grow and produce something so valuable is a priceless experience. The only feeling that comes to mind is from the song, Fly Over States by Jason Aldean.

Right now my own garden consists of red and green peppers, jalapenos, habaneros, cucumbers, red and yellow tomatoes, strawberries, cilantro, oregano, chives, and pineapple mint. I have all the herbs potted in individual pots so they are easily transportable into my home come wintertime. So my garden is pretty small right now but I have some exciting goals once the fruit grows. I hate the taste of plain tomatoes but I planted three tomato plants to experiment making homemade salsa with my peppers, cilantro, and possibly some with pineapple mint. I'm also hoping to have enough cucumbers to make my first fermented dill pickles. (It would have been smart to plant dill too... Hmmm I will have to buy some of that too... Not too late!)

My small, (rocky) garden
Redskin Pepper
Oregano
Pineapple Mint, Cilantro, Chives (check out the flowers on the chives...pretty cool!)
It's obvious by looking at my pictures that I have a LONG way to go on my journey to becoming a farmer... but everyone has to start somewhere right? I would really love to make my garden bigger and bigger each year until it eventually turns into a substantial amount of farmland. I would have my own big, cool, green John Deere tractor/ big agricultural machinery to be non-specific............

It's very unlikely that this will happen though because I also have dreams of living in a small town in the middle of the mountains out west somewhere... And in southern California close to the ocean... In Europe... Taiwan... Southern Florida... Southern France... Anywhere else besides Michigan...

What can I say? I'm a dreamer.


Note to those not from Michigan: Michigan is fabulous. You can't ask for a better state... Rare to have major tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, (blizzards are nothing and always a blast)... Beautiful Great Lakes... Four seasons of fun... Porcupine Mountains... Mackinac Bridge/Island... Lots of camping... Beautiful scenery... and much, much more. I just have an urge to explore new places.

May 26, 2012

Miss A's First Big Girl Step!

Not only can my ten month old Miss A...

super speed crawl,
smother me in a million huggies and kissies (maybe just two or three),
wave "hii" and "bye bye" (even to strangers),
say Mmmmmm after eating all of her fruits and veggies,
stand up in the middle of a room all by herself,
make it through day long trips to flea markets, garage sales, and shopping malls,
play patty cakes and mime the itsy bitsy spider,
say ducky, quack quack, baba, mama, dada, doggy, kitty, bye bye, ball, stop, paci and button,
point out every single button on your clothing and then manage to lick it,
wiggle her shoulders and dance to any music,
and create extremely disgusting poo pooed diapies,

BUT she can also officially take a step now! She took her VERY FIRST STEP last night! She was being really silly and constantly standing up and laughing. I held out my arms to her and she moved her tiny little foot towards me... and voila, A STEP!!! I covered her face in kisses and picked her up high in the air! This moment totally made my whole night and so much more! I'm definitely one proud mommy. <3

While this is all extremely exciting... it does mean that our first little baby girl will soon be walking. WALKING... like a real person. She is growing up way too fast. I already miss her being a little tiny baby... she is getting so big already. I cannot believe it. It feels like just yesterday when Bill and I were putting Miss A on her blankie for tummy time and then when we had to place pillows all around her so she could sit up and play with her toys without falling and hurting herself... *sigh*deep breath*wipe tear*silence*..... Moving on.

So my Miss A is pretty talented if you ask me. My opinion as her mommy might be biased... but I don't think so! She's one talented little cookie taking her first big girl step!

May 9, 2012

Poem: Losing My Grandma

At first there was nothing
Just the thought of deep sorrow,
Concern of feeling numb to the pain, 
Agony of being unable to cry

Months and months pass but still nothing
Only the harsh realization
She is dead
My grandmother is dead

I will never see her again
Not in this lifetime anyway
And I'm only twenty three years in
What if I'm stuck another seventy?

Unfelt emotions begin to surface
Intense pain and depression sink in
I force a couple of tears
Has she really disappeared forever?

A thunderstorm of rage erupts
Gut wrenching aches spread like fire
I scream into my pillow
Feeling hopeless for my own survival

Soon enough nausea forces the storm to let up
Fatigue tricks my body into sleep
The dark clouds are clearing away
And my heavy mind disappears

I wake to a shocking silence
The eerie peace of the eye has come
Confused by the previous night's outburst
I continue on once again with nothing

Monica


Read my first reflection on Losing My Grandma.

May 6, 2012

Video of Miss A Milestones & More (Almost 10 Months!)

My daughter will be ten months old in four days! How crazy is that! Her first birthday is coming up so fast I can hardly believe it. I decided to make a video that sheds some light on some of her accomplishments these past couple months. People aren't joking when they say babies grow up so fast! Here is my living proof!

FYI: I am experimenting with iMovie  '11 so please bare with me on my lack of video editing skills. I'd love to spend much more time figuring out the iMovie program because it promises awesome home-video-making potential. However, with a fast crawler rummaging throughout our home, I don't have enough spare concentration to learn quite yet!

video

May 1, 2012

How To Get Rid of Acne Caused By Pregnancy

I want to share an excellent tip I just learned from a friend on how to rid acne.

I've always had a fairly clear face with the exception of puberty and the occasional breakout that cleared up with Clearasil. (I have always been a big fan of all Clearasil products. Their products just work great for my skin.) I have never needed to visit a dermatologist.

Then my whole world changed and I got pregnant.

My hormones got out of whack and BAM.

Uncontrollable acne. 

Nine months later, I popped out my baby.

Uncontrollable acne.

Another nine months later... My acne is still a problem.

What do I do? I complain to my best friend. She tells me that her doctor gave her the cure-all solution.
This solution is SIMPLE.

Wash your face two times daily with a bar of Dial soap. 

Nothing girly and soft feeling like Aveeno, Clinique, or Dove. Dial.
Funky smelling, boring, old, been there, done that, your grandpa uses Dial.

I laughed at my friend and said "Ugh... BAR SOAP? *grumble* okay..." I ignored her advice and then complained to her once again a few days later.
She says, "You seriously need to try Dial. It works. It dries up your skin and clears away the acne."

A few more days of grumbling about Dial and I broke down and bought it. Boring, old, non-feminine, plain Dial.

And now my face is miraculously free of acne. I didn't even have to wash my face twice a day and my pores have already shrunken down after a few uses. My forehead is much clearer now and it doesn't bother me at all anymore. Thank you Dial. Thank you friend for sharing valuable information with a pizza faced new mother.

So there you have it! The easy solution to rid acne caused by pregnancy! I really suggest you all try it. Very simple and cheap. Double bonus! =)
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