Thursday, December 19, 2013

A devastating blow for veterans

Yesterday the boys and I did something completely new. We watched C-SPAN all day as the senate debated and ultimately voted on the Ryan/Murray Bipartisan Budget (H.J Res 59).

Having an official budget in place and avoiding another government shutdown sounds great, right?! But did you know they also included a bit about where they should get funds to help lower the deficit. I know, what you're thinking, and no, congress is not taking a pay cut.

Instead they voted 64 to 36 that retired veterans, disabled or not, will take a COLA decrease every year until they turn 62 years of age.

Let me put this another way. An E-6 who retires after 20 years of service is only eligible for $14,820 yearly. The current poverty line in America is set at $15,510 a year for 2 people. So if this E-6 is married, supporting children, or has a former spouse entitled to part of their retirement pay, this E-6 is not making a living wage according to our nations stats. And this is still before the COLA decrease.

That's kind of the low end of the spectrum. Let's look at a retired E-6. After 20 years of service they are only eligible for $37,312 a year. Again, that's assuming that they are getting every penny of their 50% pay after taxes.

That's not a shockingly high number.

I'm not going to go into what a congressional members pension looks like, but if you want to see a high number, I recommend reading this.

Here's what's worrisome. These veterans signed a contract. In this contract they were PROMISED certain retirement benefits, and now congress is laughing.  Promised? Promises are for campaign trails.

In fact Senator McCain stood on the senate floor and asked "What's the big deal?"
The big deal senator, is that not only are you stealing the "benefits" these men and women worked hard for, but you are sending a message to every single American, that we, as a country, will not take care of our own.

Military members don't get paid overtime. They are not guaranteed holidays with their families. Their bodies aren't even their own- they are considered "government property".
Many military members live paycheck to paycheck, and even with their full-time job, they still qualify for low-income subsidies. Why was it necessary to implement WIC overseas? Because sometimes it's hard to live on a military paycheck.

There is a petition asking President Obama to veto the bill. If you're interested you can sign it here.

Senator Murray- who co-wrote this bill stated that the inclusion of disabled veterans in this bill was a "technical error", yet made no attempt at trying to fix it. In fact, the very opposite happened. This bill was not allowed to be amended. Yes. You read that right.
It was not allowed to be amended.

You can also contact your state senators and urge them to fix the bill, as they promised to do on the senate floor yesterday.

Edit: Here's how the decrease will directly affect one family- This is an E-8 with 20+ years of service.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Wanna Know A Secret?

A funny thing happens when you find yourself pregnant for the third (or more) time, and your other children are both boys*.

Suddenly the pressure is on. Everyone you know begins to send pink baby dust your way. 
Random strangers on the street smile at you knowingly and say "Trying for a girl?"

Even though we've only recently announced our pregnancy, we've gotten everything from "PLEASE have a girl!!" to "You DO want a girl, right?!"

Well since I was asked, I will share my heart's desire.

What I want…… What I really really really want…..

Is to stop throwing up. Seriously.

If we have a boy, it's going to be awesome!! 

If we have a girl, it's going to be awesome!!

As far as the sex of this baby goes, boy or girl, it doesn't matter to me. I am just praying for a strong, healthy, full-term baby.

The boys however, do not share my enthusiasm.

Alex would like a sister. He figures, he's got a brother, why not a sister to complete the set.

Spain would like a robot. Robots are awesome! They walk funny, and sometimes dance. oh, and the best part; THEY'RE ROBOTS!!!

*I have no doubt that this happens in families full of girls too.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Older Than You Know

The other day I was chatting with my neighbor, Kate. 
Kate was super excited, because she had just met our newest neighbors. They had just moved in to the house next to Kate's "And the best part," Kate gushed "She's 25! Someone who's FINALLY my age. Well closer anyway."

Admittedly, Kate's still not old enough to legally drink, so it's kind of like asking Alex how old he think someone is.  Everyone is either; 1) younger than him. 2) his age. 3) The crypt keeper.

Okay, not really. He doesn't know anything about the crypt keeper. Now that I think about it, he probably doesn't know what a crypt is.

The point is, I don't appreciate being thought of as "old". I have been SEVENTEEN for years. Years, people!

Most people believe me without question. 

I remember when Alex was a baby. Strangers would approach me in the grocery store and ask if it was hard being in high school with a baby. I would be aghast that they would dare to make such an assumption, and quick to let them know that I was in fact, NOT a high school student. I really can't pinpoint when, or even why, but at one point I figured I should just embrace it. 

And that's when I became seventeen indefinitely.

(Me and my mom. Taken in May. My youthful looks come honestly!)

In the last year I've been asked if I was the boys' babysitter (and what my rates were). And my personal favorite, while ALONE at the hospital I asked for directions to the allergy clinic, the person behind the desk refused to give me directions for anything other than the pediatric clinic.

Unfortunately, as Alex gets older it makes it harder for me to tell people that I'm seventeen. He'll gasp and yell "MAMA!" 

When an older child calls you "mama", people have a harder time believing you're not old enough to drink. 


Sometimes kids ruin a good thing.

I can only assume that when Kate did the math (8 year old + 2 year old + sews(?!) + makes cheesy 90's references), she came up with the only logical explanation….

I'm 84 years old.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Sometimes It's A Need!

I never had real pregnancy cravings while I was pregnant with Alex or Spain. Oh sure, certain things sounded good, but I was never consumed by the overpowering desire to consume the object of my thoughts.

Until now.

Between my extreme morning sickness and my inability to drink most fluids, I've had to be very careful to stay hydrated. One evening, I realized a popsicle would be a fantastic treat for me. I waddled to the freezer and was slightly dismayed to see that we only had mixed berry popsicles. My pregnant senses do not like mixed berry flavored anything. 
I added popsicles to the shopping list, then took my customary place on the couch. 

Fast forward to bedtime. I couldn't sleep. My every thought was consumed by popsicles. I could all but feel my lips wrapping around the frozen piece of nirvana. My dreams were filled with me begging Sweet Husband to bring popsicles home after PT, and in one dream I remember crying because he only brought home four teeny tiny popsicles. FOUR. 

In another dream, I realized that I had a giant bald spot on the top of my head, but I didn't really care because Sweet Husband had brought home boxes of popsicles for me. 
By the time Sweet Husband got up for PT, I had asked him to grab popsicles on his way home no less than eight times. In my mind it was set in stone. As Sweet Husband walked past me on his way out of our room, I grabbed his arm like a woman possessed and rasped "Don't forget the popsicles!". It could have been my pregnancy induced dementia or the fact that I had been waking up all night long, but in the darkness I could see confusion sweep across Sweet Husband's face. 
"What?" He asked. In a moment of lucidness, I realized that I may not have vocalized my need for popsicles in reality. 
"Please stop by the store and get some popsicles on your way home. Not a ton of them, just two or three boxes."
He nodded, probably doubting my mental awareness.

The hours ticked by as I waited for him to return home. I fell into short sleeping fits, where once again, popsicles taunted me in my dreams. I was so thirsty, but I knew I couldn't drink anything in the house without spending the next half hour purging every trace of it from my body.

Finally, after an eternity, Sweet Husband arrived home. I groggily worked my body into an upright position, I slowly, made my way to the kitchen, I opened the freezer to see that Sweet Husband had arranged the popsicles by order of nausea-inducing properties (I LOVE HIM!).
I selected my popsicle and trudged back to bed, where I snuggled myself under the blankets and finally tasted the sweet frozen nectar.

(The first one stayed down. Every popsicle since, has not.)

Helpful Household Hints

Today's Helpful Household Hint comes from Alex.

To properly wash a sippy cup, one must first remove the lid.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Throwing up is hard to do.

I know, I dropped off the face of the blogosphere, but I promise that I have a really good excuse.

Hyperemesis Gravidarum

That's right. Baby #3 should be making an appearance next Spring.

I wish I could say that the last few months haven't been that bad, but the truth is that they have been hell. However there were a few positive things that came out of it… You know, besides a baby.

1. I can say with absolute confidence, bulimia is not for me!
     In fact I would be very happy if I never had to throw up again.

2. Weeks of bed rest meant I got to catch up on some reading.
     My 13 year old sister very sweetly lent me several of her books, so as an added bonus I feel caught  up in the popular topics found in the YA book section.

3. Weeks of bed rest also gave me some time to catch up on some knitting.
      Aren't these booties sweet! I made them for a friend who will be welcoming her baby any day now.

4. I had the most restful vacation ever!
     Sweet Husband took me to see my mom (sometimes a girl just needs her mom). I spent two weeks laying on her couch and throwing up. Seriously I barely moved. The part that made it amazing though, was that I didn't have to worry about where the boys were and what they were doing. I could be sick and miserable, and have complete confidence that they were safe.

At this point, I feel confident that I am harboring a baby (YAY) And not just one too many croissants.

Exercising can be hazardous

So Sweet Husband found a bakery by our house that makes glazed croissants.

Let me just say that again. Glazed. Croissants.

That take everything flaky, beautiful and majestic about a croissant and then put doughnut glaze on it. 
I don't have enough words in my vocabulary to tell you how much I enjoy these. 
They're better than unicorns people.

Sweet Husband being the sweet husband that he is, started buying a box of these every time he made a grocery store run. I felt like a kid at Christmas time, and I made sure to do my part and eat at least a few of them, every time they appeared.

But, then my pants starting getting a little tight. I sadly resigned myself to the fact that I needed to start working off these croissants before everything in my closet got too tight.

I dusted off the workout DVDs, grabbed a set of weight bands and got to work. 
Three weeks into sweating off the croissants, tragedy struck. 

My band snapped. While in use. 

The rubbery tube of doom wrapped itself around my upper torso, shoulder and face leaving angry red welts in it's wake. 

I spent the rest of the night icing my injuries and letting Sweet Husband take care me.

I should probably take up yoga.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sleep Is For The Weak!

I've suspected for awhile that Sweet Husband secretly believes I'm overly dramatic about Spain's aversion to sleep.

To put everything into perspective, during the last deployment The No-Cry Sleep Solution never left my bedside. I read it daily, putting everything into practice. It would still take me HOURS to get him to fall asleep.

We've finally reached a plateau of understanding; bedtime takes a minimum of 2 hours every night, that covers: pajamafication, stories, cuddling, teeth brushing, diaper changing, and nursing, not in that order.

I don't let him sleep past 3pm and he normally lets me fall asleep before midnight.

Last weekend, after unsuccessfully attempting to get Spain to nap, I tapped out. Sweet Husband was planning on dropping a friend off at home, and I had high hopes that the gentle lull of the drive would help Spain fall asleep. Spain and Sweet Husband left.

An hour later I noticed they still weren't back. As I was deciding whether or not to start frantically calling Sweet Husband's cell phone, I heard the back door open. Spain's voice filled the house as he chattered away, shrieking in delight over something outside. Sweet Husband walked slowly into the living room. Shock, disbelief and horror radiated out from him.

"What's wrong?" I asked.

Sweet Husband shook his head slowly, "Spain started to go to sleep in the car, but every time his eyes drifted shut, he would open them, stare into the mirror above his carseat and yell "HEY! YOU! NO SLEEPING!!!!""

I stifled a laugh.

Sweet Husband's eyes filled with horror as he continued "We drove around for a long time, but the same thing happened over and  over. He just kept yelling "Hey! you! no sleeping!!!!!"".

I guess I shouldn't have been surprised when I found Spain slapping himself to stay awake a few days later.

Not gonna lie, I'm a little worried.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Newest Super Hero On The Block

Haaaaaaaave you met Aquatot? 

He guards the city from sea serpents, kraken and giant jellyfish. Strategically placed water messages, or "puddles" to the untrained eye, assure the citizens of our landlocked city that Aquatot is there. Working silently and until now, anonymously to protect our city from villanious sea creatures.  

The next time you come across an unconventional puddle, know that Aquatot is keeping you safe*.

*Please watch your step. Aquatot assumes no responsibility for water related injuries.   

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

In which we are food snobs...

Today has been one of those days where I just feel frumpy and awkward. I've been really tired lately (No Dad, I'm not pregnant) and I think today it just caught up with me.

I was in the kitchen baking cookies for Sweet Husband's soldiers as Sweet Husband washed the dishes for me (*swoon*).

Sweet Husband sighed and said "I have to tell you something, and you're not going to like it".
He paused briefly before continuing "I've been seriously craving spaghetti with that powdered parmesan cheese in a can..."

My spoonful of cookie dough dropped to the counter with a clunk, and I gaped at him in horror.

"I will buy you real parmesan cheese." I gasped, as I waited for my heart to resume beating again "I thought you were going to say 'Those jeans look awful on you.' I was prepared for that."

It was Sweet Husband's turn to look at me in horror "Why would I say that?!" he gasped.

I held up my cookie dough encrusted hand "Because it's true. I was prepared for that. You can't just spring cheese flavored potato starch on somebody!"

He grinned "I did say you weren't going to like it."

I grimaced "You know how I feel about it. There is nothing worse than cheese products that don't need refrigeration." I grinned as I saw him shudder slightly.

I was mentally giving myself a point for messing with him when he turned and gave me a slow grin "Babe, you know I'm a classy guy. It's all about eating *trashiest fast food restaurant ever* off of your stomach."

I mentally erased my point. He won. Hands down.

I need a shower.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Expect The Unexpected & All That Jazz

After six long months of Army purgatory, Sweet Husband has received his orders. Our family will be embarking on a new adventure starts next spring.

But let me back up.

In December, a mere six weeks after Sweet Husband returned from deployment, his unit made the announcement that it was deactivating in June and everyone would be up for orders. This was unexpected for us, as Sweet husband had re-enlisted with the added bonus that we would remain at our current post for a minimum of 12 months after the deployment ended.
We began to prepare for the move. Sweet husband became proactive in trying to choose a new post. But because of the “you-don’t-have-to-move bonus, he had to jump through extra hoops to “voluntarily” forfeit the benefit.

Days turned into weeks.

Weeks turned into months.  

We found ourselves in Army purgatory.

We were finally given the green light to proceed and Sweet Husband contacted his manager to request orders. He had been given a list of available options and together, we chose our top two choices. One was a mere four-hour drive from our hometown and families.

The other was six-hours away from our grandparents and seven-hours away from our parents.

We floated on marshmallow clouds as we went back to our hometown to visit our families. We had practically been assured one of our picks. We were just waiting for the official confirmation.

Then Sweet Husband checked his email.

Your space has been reserved in the recruiting school. See you next spring….
(I’m paraphrasing)  


Next Spring?


I’ve had a couple weeks to really let this sink in.

Recruiting is a three year commitment.

That means for three years we won’t have to worry about deployments or moves.

That’s pretty exciting!

I was sharing this with my dad over the phone one night.

Me: We’ll actually get to live together for three whole years!!

My dad: That’s great!

Me: I know! The last time we actually got to live together for three continuous years was… Never-

That’s right. Sweet Husband and I have never lived together for three continuous years.

We’re getting ready to celebrate our ninth wedding anniversary.

What’s more, since we’ve become a military family six years ago, we haven’t lived together for a solid year. There’s always been some type of deployment, or out of state training that lasts longer than a month.

I won't lie, I'm freaking out a little. 

So I did the only reasonable thing I could think of. I called a friend and asked if I could spaz out for a minute. 
After all the spazzing, I talked to Sweet Husband

Me: I'm freaking out about living with you for three continuous years. What if you finally figure out how neurotic I really am?

Sweet Husband: I knew you were neurotic before I married you. You can't scare me.

Best. Husband. Ever!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Learning new things....

The boys were sitting in their room playing with Legos on the floor. Alex was narrating the scene.

"This is a bomb. Mama told us not to touch it, but we didn't listen and it exploded!"

Lesson of the day: Always listen to mama!

Tip of the day:
Always check to make sure the camelback you're sitting next to doesn't have a slow leak. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Know your Audience

According to Blogger, I get a lot of referrals from a vampire stats website.

I don't really know what else to say.

Dirty Little Secrets

While doing laundry like a good housewife, I found a handful of small chocolate candies in the washing machine.

Yes. I am sure they were chocolate candies.

My first thought was someone who's name rhymes with "Crain" stuck a handful in his pocket to avoid detection and forgot them, but the load was full of grown up clothes. No little boy clothes anywhere.

Which leads to a very important question. Why hasn't Sweet Husband been sharing his chocolate stash?!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Flats&Handwashing. The END!

Day 7 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

The flats and hand washing challenge ended last night. I felt a sense of satisfaction as I put Spain to sleep in a flat diaper. I hadn't had a chance to wash diapers all weekend and I was down to the last one.  All things considered this challenge was pretty easy. The hardest thing for me was staying on top of the diaper laundry. We had three days of non-stop rain, and the extra humidity made the drying time much longer. I ended up needing to iron dry a few diapers, so we could finish the challenge. 

I woke up this morning and stared at the full diaper pail of weekend diapers. Technically the challenge was over I could throw them in the washing machine, but a small part of me felt like I would be cheating. The washing machine already had a line of laundry waiting it's turn to be cleaned. I resigned myself to hand washing the diapers. 

Handwashing really isn't bad. It's not as long and arduous as I first expected. But having double the normal amount of diapers to wash, it did take longer. I ironed them after washing to try and help speed up the drying process. My poor drying rack was loaded down. Ever rail was holding diapers, liners, and wipes. With he dark clouds overhead threatening more rain, I figured the diapers could use all the drying help they could get.

Now with the challenge officially over, it's time to test out Spain's new fitters! 

Oh, and you know, upload the rest of the diaper photos from my camera.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Flats&Handwashing Day 6

Day 6 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

I'll be honest. I'm drawing a blank as to what to write about today. Yesterday I had a thousand ideas running through my head. I was deep in "Diaperland" yesterday. I started making  some diapers and wet bags for our new niece (coming in September!). I scored some grab fitteds, and then realized Spain had to wait until Monday to try them on. *sad sigh*
I thought about telling you about the crazy wonderful thunderstorms we had ALL day. I stuck the diapers on the porch to finish drying, and they ended up completely drenched. I didn't even bother to bring them in. 
I even briefly debated sharing a little story about how Spain's new favorite game is to hide the diaper pins. I caught him hiding a set of pins inside the cover of a couch cushion. I can only imagine where the others have gone. I have no idea where the Boingos are, I haven't seen them since Monday.
Today is a day jam packed with activities. I'm praying that we have enough diapers to get through the day, and that Spain goes to bed early so I can have some special bonding time with a pint of ice cream.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Flats&handwashing Day 5

Day 5 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

What is working for me?  
My nighttime Kissaluv fitted is definitely NOT working out with hand washing. Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic diaper, and pretty much bullet proof when I add in the bamboo doubler. The issue is that I can't wring it out enough by hand. I checked it after 36 hours and the poor thing was still slightly damp.
However, flats topped with a bamboo doubler plus the wool cover have proven to be pretty magnificent at night time.
I cleaned everything out from underneath the boys' bunk bed yesterday. I found a crazy amount or books, and hidden under three shoes, a ball and a handful of legos, was a dusty receiving blanket. I decided not to ask questions, and threw it into my dirty diaper pile to add to the rotation.

I'll leave with my little speed demon, and go wash some more diapers!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Flats&Handwashing Day 4

Day 4 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

Let's talk about hand washing.

My basic routine is to rinse the diapers out in my shower as soon as I can, whether they're wet or unspeakable.
Warm wash in the bathroom sink, followed by two rinses. I wring the diapers out as best as I can, and then I hit the diapers against something hard a few times before hanging them on the drying rack.

Beating the diapers is a great trick to keep them soft as they dry. I do not appreciate folding stiff diapers, and I imagine that Spain appreciates a soft pliable diaper on his derierre, than a stiff scratchy one. So I use this technique. 

We have a handheld shower head that packs a wallop with water pressure. After I rinse the diapers out, I throw them in a diaper pail. I learned last year, that washing through out the day is less tiring than washing all at once. This year we're working on the joy of using the potty, so Spain isn't going through as many diapers in a day as he was last year.

Last night I had a total lightbulb moment. We'd been running around all day trying to check things off the always growing to-do list. I hadn't had time to wash diapers until 10pm. I stared at the pile of diapers in dismay. Washing them in the sink was going to take forever, and I just wanted to crawl in bed. Sleep deprivation is mother of invention. As I began to resign myself to the fact that I was going to spend an eternity washing diapers in the bathroom sink, inspiration struck.
I dumped the diapers on to the shower floor, flung the pail liner across the room, and proceeded to fill my now empty diaper pail with warm soapy water. After a thorough rinse, I tossed the diapers into the diaper pail and gave them some manual agitation TLC.

After two rinses to make sure I got all the soap out I deemed them clean and loaded the drying rack. Sidenote- I love that I can load the drying rack at night, and have a full rack of dry diapers by morning!

I even gave myself extra points for being green, and poured the wash water over my pitiful flower garden.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Flats&Handwashing Day 3

Day 3 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

I'm sure the maintenance man found himself wondering if he had accidentally driven through a magic time portal when I answered the door yesterday. Alex was sitting on the couch working on homework, I was folding the mountain of laundry that had taken up residence in our papasan chair, and Spain was running around  in nothing but a flat diaper, complete with pins. The soundtrack of our morning was a radio drama we were half listening to. The only thing missing from our vintage domestic picture of bliss, was a poodle skirt. Oh, wait, poodle skirts were not "mom clothes".

I know I'm in the minority, but I prefer pins. Snappis always left me cold, I've used them a few times, and then decided that I shouldn't bother trying to force myself to like them.  
I always keep at least one spare set of pins in the diaper bag "just in case". With a pair of diaper pins you can make almost anything into a makeshift diaper. They're also great for tightening saggy britches, holding together a tear, or just pinning something to your shirt. They're multi-purpose!
Pins don't scare Sweet Husband either. When Alex was a baby pins and prefolds were the first thing Sweet Husband would reach for when changing a diaper. I stocked up on fitteds, thinking Sweet Husband would prefer them, but he still went for the prefolds. 

A couple tips for using pins:
-Make sure they're sharp! Like knives, pins should be kept sharp. A dull pin can cause much more damage than a sharp pin.
-Store your pins in a bar of beeswax or soap.
-Here's a universal truth: A little lube makes insertion easier. If you're having trouble getting the pin through the fabric try oiling the tip. I run the tip of the pin gently across my scalp, but some people prefer a little olive oil or diaper cream. Remember: A little bit goes a long way!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Flats&Handwashing Challenge Day 2- Supplies and Prep

Day 2 of the 3rd Annual Flats and HandWashing Challenge. The challenge is to use only flat cloth diapers and handwash them for 7 days. No washing machines or dryers allowed!

My stash for this challenge is almost completely comprised of receiving blankets. You know the kind; they are too small to swaddle your baby in, and yet you have several of them. Receiving blankets are kind of like rabbits, and scobies, they just keep multiplying. My favorite place to find them is in thrift stores, around here you can pick them up for $.50 a piece. I'm also using a couple of Ikea burp cloths as flats.
My nighttime diaper is a Kissaluv fitted with a bamboo doubler. I'm not sure if that was the best choice, I'm not 100% sure it will be dry by bedtime. We'll find out.

Here's the break down.

10 Recieving Blankets -  $1 (Most were gifts, but I did thrift a few of them)
2 Ikea Burp Cloths -$4
1 Kissaluv Fitted -$10 (Used)
2 Grovia Covers -$15 (Clearance)
2 Bummis Covers -$15 (Used)
1 Wool soaker -$15 (Clearance)
3 Pocket diapers -$21
3 Bamboo doublers -$3
1 Wet bag -Free (I won it 6 years ago when Alex was in diapers. It's still going strong!)
1 set of Boingos -$4
Assorted Pins -$3

Grand Total =$91

I could cut this down further if I needed to. I totally splurged on the Ikea burp cloths. I could pick up eight receiving blankets at a thrift store for $4. Last year I didn't use a night time diaper, this year I wanted to give it a try and see if having a night time diaper would be feasible with hand washing in the morning and being ready to use at night.
Last year, I didn't use wool during the challenge, but I do love wool, so I decided to throw some into
The pocket diapers are necessities this year, as Spain spends a few hours each week in our church nursery. The nursery workers are more than happy to use cloth, as long as pins/snappis/boingos aren't involved.
If I had cut out the wool, the nighttime diaper, the Ikea burp cloths and commited to either Boingos OR pins I could have shaved ~$33 off my total cost.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Flats & Handwashing Challenge (The Sequel) Day 1

We were "supposed" to move this summer. I had to use quotation marks, because we're a military family, and plans have a way of changing in the military. 
When I decided to do the Flats & Handwashing challenge this year, I had planned on using it as a moving trial for me. Moving means hotel stays, life without a washer and dryer, and lots of expenses that you didn't quite plan on. I was hoping to simplify things by switching to flats for a while. Alas, I made to many plans in advance, and our plans were unexpected changed. We're no longer moving!

Sweet husband was deployed during last year's challenge, so he's never had to deal with flats before.
I  sat Sweet Husband down this morning to break the news to him. I gave him a quick outline:
-Flats only. No All-in-ones. No prefolds. No fitteds. For one week.
-No Dryers or washers, you must hand wash.
As soon as I said "hand washing" he looked at me and deadpanned "that's all you."

I figured, I should probably show him how to fold a flat into a cover anyway. Sweet Husband, isn't afraid of changing diapers, but he is afraid of messing with my "crazy Hippy ideas"*

So, ready or not, here we GO!

*My words, not his.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Facebook Evidence

  • Something happens every Wednesday. Every Wednesday, rain or shine, without fail. It probably has something to do with the spacial orbit of the moon, the fact that there is a "W" in the word "Wednesday", or maybe slow sales from the liquor store down the street. 
    Every Wednesday Alex and Spain stare forlornly out the window, sighing and counting every second until Sweet Husband gets home. 

    Last Wednesday:May:
    Both boys are standing at the screen door waiting for you. David keeps calling "Papa!" and Marcus chimes in with an occasional "Where are you papa?". They're little lost souls....
  • Sweet Husband:

    LOL...Poor guys.

    Sweet Husband came home for lunch like thirty minutes later. They were so overjoyed they started doing blackflips and singing praises. For real.
    When he left an hour later their worlds came crashing down.

    This Wednesday:
    • May:
      They're already chanting "When's Papa going to be home? Is he coming home? Where is PAPA?!"

      Sweet Husband:
    • Man...I thought that it was going to be sooner. They held out for a while.

    • They started at 10:50. I just didn't want to turn the computer on.

    I'm pretty sure 5:00 took 3 days to get here.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


Sometimes being a military spouse, straight up BITES!*

And, yes, I had an idea of what I was getting into when he signed away our lives. We had been married for two years when Sweet Husband felt called to join the military.
Sweet husband signed on the line, and two weeks later we said goodbye for the first time. He went through eights weeks of basic training, followed by twenty-four weeks of specialized training, before we were able to live together again.
Over the years, we've spent almost as much time living apart as we have living together. One might think that saying "goodbye" that often has left me hardened, that Sweet Husband's comings and goings are nothing more than turn-of-the-mill events.

One would be wrong.

Sweet Husband is adored. Everyday, when he walks through the front door, he's greeted by squeals and cheers. Occasionally the paparazzi is also on the scene to document such goings on. Everyday that Sweet Husband gets to come home. Our household rejoices. So when he gets orders to leave for weeks at a time. It is devastating.

Sometimes dealing with the craziness and politics of a unit leaves you feeling emotionally bruised and battered.

Combine the two together, and it's no wonder military installations have liquor stores.

*Yes, it bites. It does not suck. Think about it. Biting is ALWAYS bad. Sucking is not.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

My Secret Life...

I've been quiet for awhile because I wasn't sure how to publicly acknowledge the atmosphere in our house. But secrecy and pretending everything is okay is exhausting.
I've done everything I could think of to stay away from this blog. As of this typing, there is no dirty laundry in our house. But I realized that all seven people who read my blog will probably love us, even after reading this.
So here we go...........


For real people!

Spain has the ability to control water. He can take ONE teaspoon and turn it into FIVE gallons simply by letting it touch his skin,

You scoff?

Allow me share a story.

Last week I took Spain and Alex to the Pediatrician. Alex needed a sports physical and Spain was there because he had just turned two (there's no cure).
After Spain throughly inspected the exam room trashcan's foot pedal, I took him to the sink to wash his hands. I carefully balanced Spain on one of my knees, keeping him stabilized with one hand, and used the other to operate the faucet.

I turned the water on gently. I didn't need a geyser, just a soft stream.
Spain thrust his hands into the stream of water with a gusto that I would normally save for chocolate. The world slowed down. With crystal clarity I saw a geyser water shoot to our right. The world jolted back to the proper speed and I shut the faucet off 
This happened so quickly, I hadn't even had a chance to take my hand off the water handle.

Water dripped of the doorknob. I grabbed a paper towel to wipe off the knob and realized I was wadding... In a pond... On the exam room floor.
I set Spain on the floor and handed him a handful of paper towels. 
"Help Mama" I chirped cheerily "Let's clean this up!"
Spain dutifully set his wad of paper towels in the puddle. They turned from crisp crinkly light brown to soft soggy mud brown instantly.

Methodically I worked. scooping up handfuls of soggy water towels and water. The hem of my pants got heavier and heavier as they desperately tried to soak up all the water they could.
Finally, after almost emptying the paper towel dispenser, I deemed the floor "dry enough".

I grabbed a stack of books off the exam room desk to distract Spain, who was yelling "Hands! Hands!" and trying to climb inside the sink. Glossy colorful pictures did nothing to dissuade him. Instead his desire burned deeper and hotter.

Still not convinced?

You'll have to come over for dinner. He's really good at taking a glass with three drops in it, turning it upside and leaving you to look like you left your Depends at home.