You guys. I am alive.

Well, we’re “done” the reno (as in, the construction stuff is mostly done, barring a few touch ups, but we are still in unpacking and decorating mode). But I’m not ready to do all my before and after shots until the decorating is done. So, patience, grasshopper.

I completely went off of the Paleo Diet thing during the last month or so of the reno. It was difficult and uninspiring to not have a kitchen and have to chose from a very limited selection of items while eating out. I ended up gaining some weight back (I think 7 pounds?), but it came off really easily during the month of November (another Whole 30). Rob joined me on the Whole 30 this time, and he lost a few pounds… not that he was even remotely near fat or even had that much to loose. However, his eczema has completely disappeared, and it seems (to me) like he has more energy/drive… but maybe that’s because the computer has been in storage until the last week 😉 Christmas didn’t derail us too much, although I did play a little food bingo, where there were certain things I really wanted to eat during the holidays that I only get to eat once a year, or even every other year.

I’ve been making an effort to move more these days, and that’s kind of my plan for this year. I feel like I have the eating thing down (I would say that I’m paleo 90% of the time, allowing for treats on ocassion), and now it’s time to start moving. So I’ve been doing some strength conditioning at home (body weight exercises), and I’ve started doing yoga at home again, as well (did you know that some people have put 1 hour long yoga routines on youtube? Amazing – now I don’t have to go take a class). I did buy a 20 punch pass card for a local Crossfit gym… but have been to afraid to go. I should just get going and receive my beating. Ha ha. I feel like I wanted to get a little bit stronger before I go. Which is stupid, as the POINT of going is to get strong THERE. But yeah.

The kids are both good. Kitten has been a busy girl, and is very into Pokemon and Disney Fairies right now. Birdie is the same as always, except she now has 4 teeth, and is willing to play in the basement (finished, all the toys are down there) for long stretches of time by herself. She has moved out of the crib in the closet, and is now sleeping on a double mattress on the floor of her new room. She was in a sleep sack for a little while, but she seems to prefer to sleep under a big blanket now. Silly girl.

Rob is doing well at work, and has aquired a bunch of new skills at home. He did all the dapping and the lions share of baseboard painting in our house. He also learned how to install laminate floor, paint an entire house in a weekend, and just generally be bonkers. It has been a fun ride, although I’m not terribly sure that I would want to live in our home during construction of that magnitude again. The major plus was that we noticed a lot of things that needed to be fixed as we went along, instead of having to make the contractors go back and fix it.

Well, it sounds like the girls are done their breakfast. I should attend them. Watch this space for new before & after pictures, for both the house and myself, as well as some new scrapbook pages (and hopefully pictures of the kids as well as of some knitting!)

Ducks in a Row

Here’s my “before baby gets here” list… take 2:

  1. Wash out carseat, bunting bag and matching hat.  Bag up together with mirror for the car.
  2. Set up bassinet in our bedroom, layout some diapers and other essentials.
  3. Prep diapers, covers and nursing pads.
  4. Wash swing.
  5. Wash baby wraps, find somewhere to store them and the sling.
  6. Make room in our closet/dresser for baby clothes
  7. Clean up Kitten’s closet.
  8. Clean out Diaper Champ and get ready for use.
  9. Organize Kitten’s toys – put some away.
  10. Eat as much out of the freezer & pantry as possible to free up some room.
  11. Make a trip to the eco-station, Goodwill drop off, the used bookstore and the bottle depot.
  12. Pack hospital bag.
  13. Wash and put away 4 oz. bottles.
  14. Wash and lanolize new baby woolies (pants, sleep sacks, etc.).
  15. Find breast pump, sanitize and store.

So I got a few more things done on my list.  And I have proof – pictures!  Yay!  I apologize to those of you who will find this stunningly boring, but this is more for my sake (and Carolyn’s, I know she’s interested.  Heh) than yours.

So I washed and put away all our wool baby pants, etc. So far, we have two sleep sacks, 2 pairs of newborn pants, 1 pair of newborn capris (aka I ran out of yarn so the inseam is a little short), 2 pairs of small sized pants and a matching hat. I’m sure that I’ll add to this very fuzzy collection over time, but I’m not sweating it right now. I would like to knit up a soaker (underwear shaped diaper cover) for the newborn stage, as well as a small skirtie (a soaker with a skirt over top – very cute on baby girls!)… but again, not sweating it at this point.

Babies Woolies

I set up the bassinet by our bed. I know that it’s a little early… ok, really early, but it just seemed like the right time to do it, so it’s done. I suppose on the plus side I don’t have to worry about doing it AFTER baby gets here, nor do I have to do when I am even bigger at 39 weeks or something. It would be nicer if I had more room on my side of the bed, but for now it holds my knitting stuff and Star Trek dvd’s. And I did lay out some things, like some diapers and such. The night stand beside the bassinet has a few clothing items in the bottom drawer (my stuff is in the top drawer), so we’re practically set up to welcome this baby at any time.

Bassinet all set up

Under the Bassinet

I found all my baby carriers – I have two wraps and a sling to hold the baby in. I washed up the wraps, so they’re ready to go. Sadly, the sling is kind of unwashable, because the padding in it won’t last very long. Kitten wasn’t a spitty baby, so it’s pretty clean, in my opinion, so I’m not going to worry about it. I threw them in our closet because I’m organized like that.

Baby Carriers

In other, non-nesting news, I’ve been working on a new pair of socks. These are the True Love socks, and I really like the pattern, but I don’t think I love the striping pattern. I think they would have looked better in a solid or semi-solid yarn. But, whatever. They’re just for me, and I’m just happy to be knitting something semi-interesting. They’re taking their time, but I’m hoping to have them done before baby gets here.

True Love Socks

And finally – here’s a recent picture of me. Yes, I am definitely feeling gigantic, and uncomfortable. I feel like my shape is very different from how I looked when I was pregnant with Kitten, which has been rather entertaining to me.

Oh, and none of my shirts fit – they’re all too short, so don’t judge me. Even the XL shirts are too short. Yikes!

35 weeks

A moment to celebrate…

But you know I’ll be eating my words tomorrow.  You see, I just noticed after I put on my moisturizer that I don’t have a single pimple on my face right now.  I’m fairly shocked – I haven’t had a pimple-free day since I was a teenager.  Yes, at 28 years old, I get regular acne.  Thanks mom! 😉  So I’m just very excited (and aware that I’ll probably break out tomorrow!).

I think I have to credit Carolyn with this – back when I was breaking out badly in my first trimester, she bugged me every day to try Clinique.  I really didn’t want to – I wanted something natural and organic… but nothing that fit that bill was working.  I tried the Aveda Outer Peace, but it was just too harsh.  Courtesy of their no return’s policy, I really couldn’t justify spending another $100+ on their not-so-harsh line.  So I tried Clinique, because it was the bonus days, and I could get set up for under $30.  And guess what?  I totally love it.

I know that not all their products are paraben free.  I’ve come to terms with that.  I’ve decided that the one or two products that I use (in every day life, as the majority of every other body care product I use are paraben free) that do have parabens isn’t going to mean the end of the world health-wise for me.  Maybe I just cared more when I had more energy and money.  ::shrugs:: I don’t know.  All I do know is that I LOVE this stuff, and I super duper love the fact that I don’t have any pimples today.  Yay!

Knit and Crack

Here’s a pair of pants that I finished yesterday.  They haven’t been washed/blocked yet, so they’re not the BEST ever picture, but I do like how they came out in the end.  These are medium/largish in size, for a client.

Roxy's Goldfishies

In other news:  I saw the new chiropractor today.  I think I just might like this new guy – well, husband/wife team.  I saw the male doctor today, and he seemed like a good enough guy.  We share the same birth day, actually 🙂  Anyway, he was able to get both hips cracked, as well as adjust my pubic bone (he has an instrument that does it, so he doesn’t actually have to touch me there, thank goodness!).  He also wants to see me get in to some sort of low impact activity, like deep water aerobics.  Anyone want to join me? Ha ha.  I go back on Wednesday for another adjustment and to talk about our action plan.  Obviously I can’t be going to him three times a week – we can’t afford to pay out of pocket for that, and our coverage would end very quickly after that!  So I hope that we can agree on a schedule, and only deviate as very necessary.  I also loved that they were so accommodating to Kitten and I.  I wasn’t able to leave her with anyone today, so she accompanied me to the appointment.  The female doctor didn’t have any clients, so she came out to play with Kitten while I was getting adjusted – it was so nice to be able to not have to worry about Kitten touching their computers or leaping off the chiro tables!  Ha ha.  Next time I’m leaving her at home! 

The only sucky part of our visit was that today was the first day of the H1N1 flu vaccine clinics, and sadly there is a clinic located in the same building as the chiro.  Convenient, except for when the entire south end of my city (well, what seemed like, it, anyway) showed up for the vaccines today.  It was absolutely bonkers.  I had to park a block away, and across a very busy street.  This wouldn’t have been an issue at all, if it were just me, but Kitten walks very slowly and there was much craziness going on from everyone trying to park willy nilly in the parking lot and the huge queue of people standing around outside (and inside the building as well!  It was truly shocking to see people line up like that!).  I guess some people are really terrified of the flu?  I mean, we have enough vaccines in Canada for everyone to get one that wants one (my understanding from what I’ve read and what’s being reported), I don’t really understand why everyone was in such a hurry to get one today.

For the record, I am currently on the fence about whether Kitten and I will be vaccinated.  For one, I’m leary of the newness of the vaccine, and I typically deny all vaccines during pregnancy.  The issue is that H1N1 seems more dangerous for pregnant women than the “regular” flu, so I’m nervous about not getting the vaccine.  Especially because tamiflu (if that’s even available here – I don’t know) is a C level drug and NOT something I’d be comfortable with.  Hmmm… I wonder what level the vaccine would come in as, I can’t seem to find the name of the H1N1 drug to look up online.  Probably at level C, as there isn’t any ethical way to test on pregnant women.  Rob will be getting both flu shots this year, he usually gets the regular one anyway. 

Anyway, that’s what’s new.  Well, kind of new, anyway.  I pulled out all my baby stuff the other day and took pictures of it (minus Mom’s most recent additions!), so I should really get those up! 😀

Trip to Sephora

So I’m a “bee in my bonnet” type girl – once I get an idea in my head, I’ve really got to go with it.  So last night I trucked off to Sephora to see if I could find the Philosophy “On a Clear Day” skin care set (it’s the one I had picked out online).  When I got to Sephora, they didn’t have it in stock, and I was very disappointed.  So the sales girl tried to tell me that it had these three products in it… but totally the wrong products.  She had thought I meant the “Makeup Optional” kit… which has completely different stuff.  She wasn’t even sure if they were getting the On a Clear Day, or when they’d be getting it, but they might be?  Because they don’t have the full line of stock in yet?  ::sigh::

So I had her show me the rest of their acne specific skin care stuff.  They had a Clinique set that I was kind of ho hum about (and wouldn’t buy there, because it’s gift time at either the Bay or Sears, I forget which), as well as two Very Serious acne lines.  I was also kind of ho hum about those two – one I knew I wouldn’t use half the items because I don’t really care to use a “mattifying serum”, because my skin isn’t that oily… just pimply and I’m not all that patient for a 15 minute mask, either.  The other Very Serious set was just very strong – a dermatologist strenth kit, that I didn’t *really* think I needed, at least not at this point in my life.

So my other option was Juice Beauty(I’m sure I had more options, but this was the only other kit, unless I wanted to wait for the philosophy one – and they didn’t carry the On a Clear Day in seperate items either).  So I figured for $51 (yeesh) I could try it.  It’s a lot of money to be out if I don’t like it, but comparatively, not awful.  I suppose that I could have got something at the drug store for MUCH cheaper, but I think I’m happy with this line.  It’s certified organic, contains no yucky preservatives, and has very low concentrations of salacilyc acid and the other nasties that are used to cleanse your skin.  I sincerely hope that it works well, otherwise I’m going to have at least another  month of craptastic skin! Ha ha. 

The girl that explained it to me didn’t really understand the products at all, but that’s all good, because I can read directions.  Yay me.

So I tried it last night.  I washed my face, used the peel (a mask you leave on for 5-10 minutes once a week), the blemish clearing serum, and the moisturizer.  Here are my initial thoughts:

  • The cleanser is ok.  I don’t love the smell, but at least it doesn’t reek of awful perfumes.  My skin felt fairly clean after, although slightly tight, but lets be honest – I haven’t washed my face with cleanser in a very, very long time.  So it could be in reaction to that.
  • The peel smells even worse than the cleanser.  It’s supposed to be made out of green apples, but it doesn’t smell like that to me.  I understand that they don’t use any fragrances or perfumes, and yay on that, but it means that the product smells how the product smells.  I’m not sure if you’re supposed to put on a super thick layer of the stuff, but I put it on rather thinly – I didn’t want to use very much of the little pot, I’m hoping that it lasts a long time.  Even if I pick this skin care method to go with for a while, I’m not sure that this is a product that I will continue to buy.  We’ll see how it goes, though.
  • The Blemish Clearing Serum was ok.  You really need so very little of it, even if you spread it all over your face.  This is good news – my teensy one once bottle will last me a while! Ha ha.  I can’t speak as to whether I like it or not.  It doesn’t smell like much, and didn’t sting or anything to go on, so my opinion on this will be fairly results based, I think.
  • The Moisturizer is a little heavier than I would personally pick.  I think I prefer the Philosophy moisturizer.  If it was thinner and “disappeared” off my face right away, I would love love this kit.   I definitely won’t be using the moisturizer at night again.  I just don’t like how it feels.  Maybe I’m just used to the way that my skin feels with its natural oils on it, but this feels way worse than that.  I guess it’s not *awful*, I just don’t love it.  I think I was spoiled by the super light Mary Kay moisturizer that I used before, and now I’m just looking for a replacement that is very much like it.  ::shrugs::  I might also prefer this cream once the weather turns cooler and dryer. 

Over all, my first experience with the Juice Beauty line has been ok.  No reaction to the peel (I did the test patch first), and my skin isn’t overly tight or cranky, so we’ll see how it goes.  I should take before and after pictures, but I’m not sure that my acne is severe enough to really tell the difference.  I am starting to break out, but it’s not too bad yet.  I didn’t want to wait until I was hideous! Ha ha.

Bits and Bites

I’m lazy and tired and have WAY too many things to do, so here’s a short list of things that you might want to know.

  • Kitten has renamed Nybbles.  She’s now called “Moses”.  Don’t ask me why, but it is what it is.  Also, Kitten has learned how to make that “pssss psss pssss” noise and rub her fingers together when she wants the cats to come to her!  It’s hilarious.  “Moses” usually ignores her, but Tych has been known to come on the occassion (depending on how much love he’s received lately). 
  • I’ve still bee knitting like I have lost my brain.  Here are some of my most current items:

I did a set of three pairs of shorties for a wonderful lady on Cloth Diaper Nation. Here they are (please excuse the terrible photography in the first picture)

RoxyRocks Shorties

RoxyRocks Shorties

RoxyRocks Shorties

I also had time to crank out a skirtie for Kitten. I really love it, even though it took nearly 12 oz of wool (that’s a lot) and a zillion hours to do!

Kitten in her new skirt

  • My site was hacked.  It was kind of funny, but I’m just grateful that they didn’t do anything malicious… like corrupting my files and such.  So I’m doing a backup again today, and trying to figure out how to change my ftp password.  It’s lame right now, so I want to make sure it’s more secure in the future.  It’s possible that they guy just hacked everyone on the server… but I’d like to be a little responsible for my own security, you know?  Anyway, I have high hopes of moving my blog hosting to our server, but Rob isn’t sure if  it will slow my blog down and such.  But if it loads in half a second or one second… does it really matter?  I assume that *most* people use a feed-reader, anyway, so they’re not really loading my site as it is. 
  • Our air conditioner is on the fritz.  Some days it works, and others NOT AT ALL.  Apparently I am now a big spoiled baby because the heat makes me CRANKY.  Which sucks.  We have a repair guy coming tomorrow, and it’s been working *ok* (but not as efficiently as I think it could be), but when you buy something new, you don’t expect it to break barely a year after you’ve bought it, you know?
  • Also broken:  My washing machine.  Although not unusable, it makes a really loud squeaking noise… some times.  I originally thought that I had destroyed it by using too much soap, but the squeaking comes and goes, and happens when the drum is pushed on (we have a front-loader).  So… I’m using it until the it squeaks all the time and then we’ll have the repair guy out to look at it.  I don’t want to use it into the ground (and then buy a snookem new one)… or do I?  I have my eye on the LG fancypants one.  But in white, because we’re not replacing our perfectly good dryer.
  • We’re on week 4 of our homeschooling, and thing seem to be going ok.  How do I judge it?  I mean, Kitten doesn’t learn and use her vocabulary word every week (seriously, how do you work “vines” into every day conversation, other than “Hey kid, go get me a glass of Wild Vines Wine out of the fridge?”), nor does she always remember the sign language sign for the week (but “cat” was a hit, and she totally knows that one!!!), but she DOES remember shapes, colours, letters and numbers.  So I guess that’s better than nothing.  This week the topic is eyes and the vocab word is “iris”, so I try to talk about “mommy’s iris’ are blue, auntie’s iris’ are brown” after explaining what an iris is (the coloured part of your eye).  We try to review our learning poster every day to help with retention, but I don’t know if what I’m doing is “right”, you know?  Regardless, it helps me to interact with her a little more and helps me to plan pointed activities, rather that just letting her play independantly all day long. 
  • We had AWFUL ammonia stink in our diapers.  Probably a mixture of detergent and mineral build-up.  I finally found some RLR locally (Sobeys!  WOOT!), so I have officially stripped all of Kitten’s diapers and they are so soft and sweet smelling now.  Hopefully I won’t have to worry about that again any time soon.  However, I’ve decided to strip our microfiber because it’s all so dingy and gets smelly fast, so there must be yuck in there still.  First I have to catch up on some regular laundry.  I am so tired of doing laundry.  ::sigh::
  • I haven’t talked about Jamie Oliver in a long time (I know, what’s wrong with me?), but I recently bought his new book “Jamie’s Food Revolution”.  It’s a recipe book where the whole idea is to learn a handful of simple but tasty recipes and to teach them to your friends.  Then your friends teach them to their friends, and so on.  That way, everyone’s learning how to cook a few great meals and eating less take-out, which is ALWAYS a good thing.  Now, some people don’t need cooking lessons (I’m looking at you, Hanna), but for the rest of us who get stuck in the same rut all the time (spagetti, pancakes, KD, that was typical around here!) it’s great to be able to plan out a week of exciting different foods.  I especially love his curries section (mmm!  Curry!) and stir frys.  If you have a chance to even just peek at the book, it’s SO PRETTY!  I think I pet it for like, four days, before I started to cook out of it. 
  • I’ve started using the Oil Cleansing Method for facial care.   I still get terrible acne and there doesn’t seem to be anything that is helping it.  Plus, I am STILL struggling to find a good moistuizer.  So, the premise of this method is that you mix castor oil (plant based, aparently magical) with cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil and rub it into your skin.  Then you use a very hot, wet cloth and hold it over your face, then gently swoop the oil off, rinsing the cloth a lot.  I used it last night at the sink and this morning in the shower.  The sink method works better, because you’re not sweating in the shower (or is that only me?).  I liked how smooth my face felt after, and especially how that always dry and flaky patch between my eyebrows was just normal skin (although I could still see my angry elevens).  I don’t really need to use a moisturizer after doing this, and I liked that part best of all! 🙂  I’ll let you know how it all continues, especially during the hormonal acne I get during my period! 

Anywhoodle.  I think I’m going to go knit – I have one more skirtie custom to do and then I have a break to knit my own things.  I have oh-so-many things to knit.  Like a tank top for myself, a halter dress for Kitten, my winter cowl, a church shawl for myself… Lots of things.