Sunday, November 29, 2009

finding my voice

I've always loved music. I've played the piano since I was 7, I played the flute from 4th grade to 8th grade, and I've always loved to sing.

I was never amazing, but I always sang. Growing up I sang while playing the piano (I'm positive my siblings loved this). I sang along to my parents' Beatles and The Mamas and The Papas records. I sang in the ward choir, I sang in stake choirs, I was in musicals in high school (in fact, I was a lead in a musical, but really I think there wasn't much musical competition at my high school and I just looked the part).

In college I took a singing class with my friend, Jared. I sang in a volunteer choir performance of He is Jesus Christ with my friend, Kerri. I sang REALLY loud in the car by myself--with or without the radio on. And, of course, I sang in the shower.

Then I got married. I still sang along to songs in the car (perhaps not quite so loud), but I think I got a little self conscious about singing in the shower. I mean, there was someone who could hear me! I never really got back into participating in church choirs (nap time with the hubby was much more inviting). And when you stop singing, your voice kind of goes down the drain.

Then I had a baby. And I started to sing to him. No background music. Just me and the babe and my voice. It was nice. I sing him my favorite primary songs. I sing him "Dream a Little Dream." I sing him Christmas songs. I didn't know I missed it until I started singing again.

So today I decided to start participating in my ward choir again.

But I took a nap with the baby and forgot. I guess I'll start next week...

are you my friend?

Is your name on my side bar? If it isn't, then you probably aren't on my Google Reader list either. And that's a shame.

You see, I often find out a friend of mine has a blog, get all excited, check it out, forget to put it on my list and my Google Reader, and then forget it exists entirely. And I often repeat this process again with the same blogs since my memory is oh so good.

So will you let me know if I know you and you're not on my list?

If you don't want to be listed, that's totally fine, too. Just say the word.

Thanks!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

happy thanksgiving

I'm grateful for...

...my life.
...my family.
...my husband.
...my baby.
...my church.
...my health.
...my body.
...my mind.
...my home.
...a positive outlook on life.
...friends who inspire me with their strength in hard times.
...friends who make me laugh.
...the fact that my friends are like my family.
...the fact that my family members are my best friends.

I could go on and on, but I leave it at that. I'm grateful.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

sequoia trail run registration is open!

Okay--Whitney, Maren, Shayla, Rachel, Aubrey, Ashley (Christine, but the other Ashley should be feeling the pressure...), Liz, Kerri (Chicago equivalent), Mary, not Tyler (10k=6.2 miles), and Amy! (Maybe Mom?)

The The Sequoia Trail Run (10k and 20k) I mentioned in a post a while back is now OPEN for registration! I signed up. Shayla signed up. It's your turn. Hurray!

I will hopefully start running again in 2 weeks. Wish me luck!

real advice for itchy skin

{Skip this blog post if you have no interest in itchy skin.}

I've learned a lot with this itchy skin and thought I should pass on the information to anyone searching about postpartum itchy skin on the internet. This, of course, is just based on my own experience. Here is what I have learned:

1. The doctors will likely not have an answer for you, but go see them anyway so you can get a steroid cream and/or antihistamine.

2. If the rash/itching is an allergic reaction to the meds given to you in the hospital, the allergic reaction will show up 8 or 9 days after the baby's birth. The fact that mine showed up about 2 1/2 weeks later meant it was not.

3. Your body is going through so many changes (hormones coming and going after birth) that your skin may have just become ultra sensitive and you might just have to wait it out. I know--this sucks.

4. Go see a dermatologist as soon as possible. I saw my regular doctor after a week of itching. He said to use hydrocortizone cream, Eucerin or Cetaphil, and perhaps Claritin and said to give it a couple weeks to see if it got better. After a week it had gotten worse, so I went to see the dermatologist. She said my doctor's advice was weak sauce and gave me a prescription for a steroid cream and said to come back in a week if it didn't get better. That essentially means the week I waited after seeing my regular doctor was a waste of a week. Go straight to your dermatologist.

5. Hydrocortizone cream is "like spitting in the ocean." Those words came out of the dermatologist's mouth. In other words, it sucks and isn't worth using for serious itching.

6. Over-the-counter antihystamines (like Claritan and Alavert) are not strong enough to affect itchy skin. Dermatologist said I'd need a prescription antihistamine, which she didn't give me for reasons I list below.

7. Prescription antihistamines are transferred through breastmilk to your baby and make him/her drowsy. The dermatologist recommended against doing this since it's important to be able to notice changes in your newborn's behavior in case they get sick. If they are drugged up and drowsy, those changes may not be noticeable.

8. The dermatologist prescribed a steroid cream for me (which she said was fine to use while breastfeeding) and said it would both treat the problem and the itching, while other topical creams only treat the itching.

9. Warmth actually makes the itching inflamed. Hot showers may feel good at the time, but will make the itching worse after the shower. The reason you wake up at night itching horribly is because you are all warm and toasty in bed.

10. Your body isn't good at detecting itching and cold at the same time. Cold wins. Take lukewarm (cold is best if you can handle it) showers and baths. Dress to keep cool. Use Sarna anti-itch lotion. It gives you a menthol feeling on your skin so your skin feels cold.

11. When you get out of the shower, pat yourself dry, and immediately put on the steroid cream followed by Eucerin or Cetaphil cream. Not the lotion. The nasty, super thick cream. This supposedly locks in the moisture. I think it just feels gross. But you do what you gotta do, right?

So there you have it. Everything I learned in the last 3 weeks. Itching sucks, especially when you'd like to be snuggling with your baby and you are instead handing him off to your husband so you can go get in a cold tub.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

babies for sale?

Life is so entertaining when I'm actually out and about. I saw this out of the corner of my eye this morning and went back later in the day to confirm what I thought I saw. And confirm I did. Too funny. It all made sense when I saw what kind of store it was...


I will send cookies to the first person who can tell me what kind of store had this sign out front. No googling the answer!

Monday, November 23, 2009

dear itch monster

Dear itch monster,

My name is Graham and I'm writing to ask you to leave my mom alone. All she does is talk about how her skin itches and it's getting kind of annoying. She's kind of a wimp when it comes to being uncomfortable. She's not as fun as she was before all the itching, and she is spending our life savings on every lotion, cream, and ointment recommended to her. She doesn't sing to me as much as before and she's constantly trying to convince me to sleep even when I'm not tired (just so she can sleep). I'd like my fun mom back.

She keeps talking about how she'd like to clean her room, and organize my room, and make our Christmas stockings, and make Christmas presents, and make food for Thanksgiving. Instead she takes lots of showers and baths, puts on sticky creams, sits on the couch all day, and takes naps.

It's really boring. SO, itch monster, if you could just move on and leave our house alone, we'd greatly appreciate it. You're welcome to stay until her dermatology appointment on Wednesday, but after that you've officially overstayed your welcome.

Thanks,

Baby G

Friday, November 20, 2009

discrepancy clothing



I was going to introduce you all to Discrepancy Clothing a month ago, but then this little baby named Graham kind of distracted us and I completely forgot. But he's old news now so I can get back to what I was talking about. (I didn't mean it, Graham! You're still new and exciting!)

Back in 2002, our friend Josh Denney started Discrepancy Clothing Company. Last year Christian joined him and they reignited the company. They came up with some new shirt designs, stocked up on more hats, and got things going again. This month they'll be adding sweatshirts to the mix. The shirts are printed on American Apparel so they are soft, comfy, high quality, and made in the USA.

Check out the web site here.

Check out our friend Jona rockin' my favorite shirt here.

Become a fan on Facebook and Myspace.

Check out Christian rockin' a little Discrepancy for the ladies:


Even Baby G represents:


Can't figure out what to get your brother/husband/boyfriend for Christmas? Well now you know...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

son of an itch!

I itch soooo bad. It started with my belly. Is it the stretch marks? Then spread to my boobies. Irritation from breastfeeding? So I went to the doctor. He pretty much said, "It could be lots of things. Doesn't look serious. Use these topical creams. Give us a call if it doesn't get better in a couple weeks."

Weeks?? Weeks?! I can't wait weeks!!

So I went home and decided to tough it out. What's a little bit of itching, huh?

Within 3 days it has spread to my arms and legs. I'm going crazy.

After looking it up online, it looks like lots of women have unexplained itchy skin after having a baby. None of them really got answers from their doctors either.

I'm seriously going crazy. Anyone have any advice for me?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

bumjoy cloth diapers

So we're planning to use cloth diapers. We bought a bunch of prefolds and a couple of covers (read: inexpensive, old-school cloth diapers and covers) as well as a number of one-size pocket diapers (read: more expensive, "new-fangled," fitted cloth diapers that are supposed to adjust to fit from newborn to toddler). Our plan was to use the prefolds until we figured out which pocket diapers we liked and then order more.

Some cinch up in the sides in order to make the diaper smaller; some double over and snap up in the front. Let's just say that not all the "one-size" diapers are truly one-size-fits-all. Most were absolutely ginormous on our little guy, and he's probably over 10 pounds now. They aren't necessarily too loose--just WAY too bulky. The poor kid could barely move in some of them.

In fact, the one that led to the wonderful crack shot in a previous post was so big and bulky in the front that I almost refused to try it. But I'm not going to write them all off as failures yet. They are just too big for now, so we may end up liking them in the future. Who knows?

That said, I have to give a shout out to the one-size diapers that really did work. The BumJoy diapers weren't too big, didn't necessarily look like they were doubled up in the front, and didn't leak. Sure, they are bulky compared to disposables, but that comes with the territory when you cloth diaper. The best part? They were the cheapest one-size diaper we sampled. Hurray! I ordered a few more to confirm that I like them, and now I'm ready to really stock up. Pocket diapers are so easy that it feels like we're cheating the cloth diapering system.


Not to mention the colors are absolutely perfect! Check them out at www.etsy.com/shop/bumJoy.


Graham says they make him feel like a super hero.

Monday, November 16, 2009

his first name is barack...



I saw this in the check-out line at CVS Pharmacy (I guess I spend a lot of time at drug stores). First I was confused (why is the "&" there? It's Michelle Obama), then I laughed (Ohhh, Michelle AND Obama), then my English teacher side kicked in and I was annoyed by the whole thing (Come on, people. It's "Michelle & Barack.").

If you're going to use first names, be consistent. Just a little pet peeve of mine. I know the magazine is a tabloid and none of what it says is true, but it should still have an editor who uses parallel structure, right?

{Oh, and as for the other headline story--perhaps we should be congratulating Clint Eastwood for being the only person in Hollywood who actually looks his age. I mean, he's almost 80.}

{Also, I think the best part of this post is that someone pointed out that I had spelled Barack "Barak" the first time I posted. Ha! Oops. Awesome.}

Saturday, November 14, 2009

breastfeeding

Since the mentioning of breasfeeding was so popular in my last post, I'll post my top 10 reasons to breastfeed your baby.

{PS--Thanks for all the advice. Things actually started getting a lot better that day and it's not so bad now. I guess the 3-week mark was the turning point for me.}

Top 10 reasons to breastfeed your baby
:

10. It's a way for your baby to prove that he's in charge: he'll stay awake when you want him to sleep, and he'll sleep when you are trying to feed him.

9. It guarantees the kid will bond with and want you even though your husband is the kid magnet of the family.

8. Because nothing makes you feel more attractive than wearing pads on your boobs.

7. So you can have the TV and laptop all to yourself in the middle of the night.

6. It's just a complicated way to get the kid to sit still so you can cut his fingernails.

5. You always wanted to know what it feels like to clamp lobsters onto your nipples.

4. Everyone needs a way to make guests feel awkward.

3. So you'll have more money to spend at Target.

2. It's the perfect time to challenge someone to a weight loss competition.

1. So you can finally fill your over-the-shoulder boulder holders.

'Nuff said.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

gross!

I came across these at Walgreens last night.


Who comes up with these? Who thought that sucking on a reindeer's tongue sounded like a good idea? GROSS!

what we've been up to

1. Trying out various cloth diapers. Some seem to fit. Some don't. We got a good laugh when we found Graham like this after his nap. Thank goodness he hadn't pooped.


2. Not feeling like sleep-deprived new parents. Graham sleeps a ton and we are doing just fine. I feel like I've had the kid forever and everything feels quite natural for us. It helps that he's super mellow and easy.

3. Introducing Graham to his cousins. Luca and Graham are less than 2 months apart!


3. Celebrating Christian's birthday. Happy birthday, Christian!! To celebrate his new life as a father, I got him a skateboard. Every new dad needs a skateboard, right?




4. Visiting the cousins in Loomis. Happy birthday, Sutton! We had so much fun. Ian and Kitty--if you can find Christian a good job, we'll come live by you. :)




5. Having a little cry. I've done so so well since Graham was born. But the other day I broke down and cried. Breastfeeding hurts. 2 boobs x 8 times a day x 18 days = 288 painful latches (okay, the first couple days didn't hurt). Makes me cringe. But I think it's starting to get better...

6. Watching Christian's soccer game. Isn't he a cutie?


In other words, we have been having a lot of fun. And we love that Graham has attracted visits from lots of friends. We love you all and have loved all the visits! Keep 'em coming!

Time for me to go get back in bed...

Monday, November 2, 2009

something to work toward

Alright ladies (and gentlemen). It's time to talk fitness. Here's how a conversation with Christian went last night (we were chatting about what we'd like to improve about our bodies):

Molly: Let's have a fitness competition.
Christian: Okay, whichever of us gets into our ideal shape first wins $100.
Molly: Awesome. Deal.
Christian: I can live with my body the way it is. I'm done. I win. Should I go get the $100 now?

Ha ha. Very funny, Christian.

But seriously, I have a plan, and I'm wondering who wants to join me. The Sequoia Trail Run in Joaquin Miller Park (in the hills behind Oakland) is on February 27th. That's 16 1/2 weeks away. There is a 10k (6.2 miles) and a 20k (12.4 miles).

I plan to walk for the next 4 weeks until my body has fully healed and is ready to start running. I will then use the next 12 weeks to increase my mileage 1 mile a week. Sounds like a feasible plan, right?

Reasons you should sign up for this race:

1. It's only $35.
2. You don't have to do the 20k. You can sign up for the 10k! (Or the 30k or 50k if you really want.)
3. There's a limit of about 100 people for each distance, so you don't have to deal with crowds and crowds of people.
4. It's part of the Pacific Coast Trail Runs, which means it's beautiful and all on trail. But consider yourself warned--it's hilly. They don't mess around when it comes to hills. You need to train on hills. And you need to remember that on beautiful runs like this, there's no shame in walking up a hill. Trust me--sometimes these runs are more like hiking. {I love the hills and the hills love me!}
5. You'll be giving me peer pressure to get back into running shape!
6. It's not very far away and doesn't start at an insanely early hour, so you can sleep in your own beds the night before.
7. Packet pick-up is right before the race, so you don't have to make two trips to the race site.



I will be signing up as soon as the registration opens, and I'll remind all of you as well...

And now I'm off to take a walk.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

halloween!

We had a very calm Halloween. Friday night we went to our church's "Trunk or Treat" and Graham made his debut as a dragon. The outfit was a bit big but cute nonetheless. And, of course, Graham slept the entire time.


Dianna got to meet Graham for the first time!


Christian and I were jellyfish. Can you tell?


Then on Halloween itself, we sat around all day. We watched the Batman movies. I fell in love with Catwoman's yellow chenille couch. I want one like it some day.


And around 9:00pm, we finally got around to carving our pumpkins. Hurray!