7 Quick Takes

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30 November 2012

Joining Jennifer Fulwiler for another round of the takes today. 

Because I don't type about the kids enough ... allow me to do so for a minute or 34 ...

1. I'm not in any harried hurry to get Julia potty trained mainly because she is showing no interest in doing so and because I'm lazy and I've heard that potty training success can regress when new siblings come on the scene. But ... of course ... last night Simon asked Julia if she'd like to try to go on her little potty and ... bada-bing-bada-urine ... success. And then she wore her Dora "ummerwares" the rest of the evening with nary an accident. She flew back to the comfort and solace of her diaper today though ... so destination: three kids in diapers and three kids in cages, population: Patton clan .... look out.
I'm not sure if those boots have ever seen the correct feet ... but she puts them on herself which is worth a million trillion dollars in the 72 minute "lets get ready to get out the door" game.

2. More on Julia? You betcha. Julia has slowly worked her way up to multiple nightly wake ups where she merely wants to be tucked back in and given a sip of water and I was a big fat enabler during Simon's night float month and just let it go but I've been letting her cry through the night (yes, she is two large years of age, I'm aware) because the thought of three kids up at night in January and February when Simon is on nights again sends me into a fit of shudders and Premature Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Maybe it's a coincidence but her temperament has improved tenfold in the agreeable category and I'm just telling myself that it's because she has learned to self soothe and realizes that the true holder of the scepter-o-power in the house is, actually and shockingly, not her! Just let me think my hypothesis is spot on. Thank you.

3. Moving onto the former favorite: Sebastian Fatton. His temperament has taken a sudden turn for the nasty - especially in the evenings. I know he's teething and I'm learning to just laugh at his kitchen floor tantrums but he is venturing into a territory that Julia has yet to explore: hitting Mom in the face when he is especially angry. I can tell myself that he isn't trying to be malicious but he totally is. Hopefully it's just a phase. I'll let you know when I figure out how to cure what ails the abusive 13 month old male species ... maybe I'll throw together an informative e-book. A worst seller for sure.
Simon and me: matchy match shoes, pants, fleeces, and skin tone.

4. Switching gears to an even more exciting topic ... our elderly neighbor Jean. He seems to suffer from a touch of dementia because he re-asks our names and tells us that he just isn't as sharp as he used to be every single time we chat. Anyway, he can generally be spotted on a slow walk around the block with the help of his cane every afternoon. The other day an ambulance pulled up to our across-the-street-and-down-a-little-bit and while I was straining to see what was going on from the living room window ... there went Jean .... speeeeeeed walking down the street to check out the excitement -- cane in hand but not in use at all. So ... I'm onto you Jean ... no more pretending you don't know that a. Julia is actually a girl and b. that her name is Julia.

5. Switching gears again to a real thriller ... hair products. Well, one product in particular. I have super duper flat hair. It is terrible. I've tried a zillion products and found that this powder (don't be scandalized by the name) far outvolumizes any dry shampoo, root lifter, root volumizer, miracle worker, gobble gobbler nonsense. I can only find it online and I know some people claim that baby powder is "the same" but my hair disagrees 120 zillion percent. Anyway, hopefully your hair doesn't suffer the same flatty blahs that mine does but if it DOES ... I can't recommend this stuff enough. When Julia got into and spilled a ton of it ... I think I maybe shed a tear or twenty and tattle-tale-texted Simon ... you know how I roll. 

6. I really want to see this movie.

7. If I were to rate this blog post it would get filed under: most boring blog post in the history of blog posts. I trust that you accept my sincere apology.

Go see Jen for all the betters.

spa hour

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29 November 2012

dinner at 4:50?
bath at 5:20?
bed at 6:10?
don't mind if they do!

I had been a little bit apprehensive about my date with the very thorough hygienist this afternoon. I'm sure there are some crazies that love having their teeth scraped and their flossing habits questioned but I am not one of you. No, I hadn't exactly been looking forward to the afternoon until the morning happened. The morning that brought Julia cock-a-doodle-needing an hour earlier than she normally crows justasIsnuck into the shower and proceeded to cry justloudenough to ruin said shower. And the morning that saw ninja-hands-Sebastian swipe Julia's bomb of a diaper that I was in the middle of changing (while giving her yet another pep lecture on the benefits of wearing underwear and using the potty like a normal human - an idea that she still refuses to buy) and that he swiftly dragged (brown side down, of course!!) to its rightful place ... the toilet (that he can now easily and proudly open with one hand).  You think you've encountered capital G Gross until you go fishing for every last piece of that exploded diaper while one toddler narrates in detailed and half clothed horror and the other toddler clamors as he just about dies to jump in and help undo his disgusting deed. Bright side? He didn't have time to eat it ... like last time.

So when the time (oh, is it only 1pm? because it feels like it should be midnight of Jan 23, 2023) finally came to prop my feet up, open wide, get my blood pressure taken (?? is this a new dental thing??), dramatically wince when the scraping instrument/power claw of death hit an "area of sensitivity", answer the barrage of questions about our Thanksgiving weekend as eloquently as possible with my mouth open and occupied, not realize that the fluoride treatment was actually NOT clear but resembled wet toilet paper residing on my pearlies and should definitely be brushed off before venturing out into the wild of the public -- I had absolutely nothing but the happiest of thoughts to think about the experience. And I am almost giddy at the thought of our next scheduled tryst on June 6th at 10 in the am. I'll bring the tartar.

Exercise and Supplements in Pregnancy

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28 November 2012

Oh, yes please Grace, tell us more about your never ending pregnancy.


I know, I know ... I'm not a health professional nor am I any sort of pregnancy veteran and probably zero people (pregnant or not) care about my exercise regimen or the horse pills that I throw back on the daily but ... here I am ... typing and advising away.

I should probably preface this by admitting that I am guilty of taking those useless gummy prenatal vitamins that have almost no effect on my overall health other than probably only slightly elevating my blood sugar for a few minutes after I scarf them down so don't think that I consider myself any sort of free range health nut because I do not.

Blood Builder I don't know many ladies that don't suffer from at least mild anemia when they are pregnant. My mom is a reflexologist and a natural medicine guru and sent me this stuff as soon as there was even a hint of lowish iron levels with Julia's pregnancy and it shot my red blood cell count right back up to the normal range. I started taking it right away with Sebastian's pregnancy and never had a problem but didn't have any on hand at the beginning of this pregnancy and my levels were extremely low in the first trimester but one Amazon order later ... I was good as new. Blood Builder is great because it has folic acid as well and doesn't have any of the nasty side effects that taking straight iron supplements does. Get it and take it and kiss your Anemia and (some) fatigue goodbye.

Magnesium 400 mg Like most pregs in their third trimester I start to get a little achy and my ribs start to hurt and I like to complain at night about how I just feel (wait for it ...) "SO pregnant!!" Simon mentioned that one of the attending doctors he works with recommends that his patients take 400 of magnesium a day to help with the "aches and pains" associated with pregnancy. Maybe it was/is a placebo effect but as soon as I started taking it I felt a million times better than I had. I do think the baby dropped a little and helped with the rib cage achiness and overall soreness but I'm not going to take my chances and stop taking it. I take it at night and I have no idea if that matters or not. My heartburn also improved significantly and that could just be a crazy coincidence.

Super B-Complex Vitamin: There's probably almost no way to escape at least a little bit of overall fatigue throughout one's pregnancy but I was feeling especially worn down at the beginning of the second trimester this time around, you know, when you're supposed to start feeling that "burst of energy"? I started taking this B-Complex in the morning and again ... blame it on the effect of the placebo but I really noticed a difference and even on the days that the kids got in the way of my coffee/creamer drinking ... I felt a lot better than I had the previous weeks. I would imagine it would have a similar effect even if you aren't pregnant, right?

Without overdoing it, I'm a firm believer that the more active I am, the better I feel. I know - crazy. I find this to be especially true during pregnancy. I can tell when I've let a few days go by with my only physical exertion being that of dragging Sebastian away from the toilet and lifting a fickle Julia in and out and in and out and in and out of her crib because I feel restless and extra tired. Of course, even with regular exercise, I still have those afternoons that the mere thought of carrying Sebastian upstairs for his nap makes me really tired and really grumpy.

Running: I know I suffer from a bit of pregnancy amnesia and don't remember how bad my morning sickness was with Julia and Sebastian but it felt especially bad this time around. I found that a little cocktail of Zofran, one (cooked) egg, and a run in the morning before the temperature hit 111 degrees kept the gross at bay. There was one week in which the jogger was out of commission due to a flat tire and I pretty much camped out on the futon in the basement because I felt so sick even with some protein and Zofran. Is running the answer to everyone's morning sickness woes? No ... but staying a little bit active was definitely the ticket for me this time around. And when I say "running" please know that I mean something along the lines of weeks 1-7 in the Couch to 5K program (lots of intervals) and my pace is bordering on that of a geriatric tortoise. I think I maybe ran (no walking) my entire route two whole times while pushing the kids this pregnancy and a few more when I escaped without them ... but other than that ... I love a good "walk 2 min, run 3 min" pattern.

Summer Sanders' Prenatal Workout: Eh. I don't love it but it makes me feel like I'm doing something when the physics of the belly doesn't allow for regular Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 in the third trimester. I only ever do the express option for the 2nd trimester because the 3rd trimester involves a chair that I don't want to drag downstairs to the basement because I'm too lazy to be doing that for a workout.

10 Minute Solution - Kickbox Bootcamp: I hate/love this lady. She has an Australian accent and a body made entirely of steel and wears camo capri pants and is totally nuts. You can easily do the arms and legs segments all throughout your pregnancy because you stay standing (lunging, squatting) throughout those portions and they aren't too killer. They are great for getting back into the swing of things in the postpartum period of "hell no I do not want to work out but I'm sick of feeling gross and stagnant so I guess I can handle this while the baby grunts and robot moves his/her little legs and arms in the bouncy chair" -- you know what I'm talking about.

10 Minute Solution: Prenatal Pilates: this should be reserved for the last 4-6ish weeks of pregnancy when you're feeling especially elephanty and don't want to move ... there is also a postpartum ab portion that I should probably check out in the Spring because my sister-in-law is getting married and I have a very pretty bridesmaid dress that I don't want to be spilling out of or layering 3 pairs of Spanx (fine, Assets) underneath that might inhibit my ability to dance the night away.

I'm sure you seasoned pregs have a zillion better tried and true tips to share .... and I hope you will. Thanks in advance. 

a vlog?

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27 November 2012

Maybe I spent one or fifty too many hours sans adult interaction over the holiday weekend but I started thinking that doing a vlog with Simon would make a fun little post. Have you seen Lauren's? Or Bridget's? I know, I know ... they are super cute and I am way below their cutegory but I'm not letting that stop this runaway train-o-cray.

So ... I broached it with him and this is exactly how it went:

G: would you ever humor me and do a vlog?
S: what in the hell is that?
G: you know ... a video that you post on your blog?
S: no
G: it could be fun! we could ask people to ask questions ... maybe?
S: no
G: maybe someone really wants to know your hair styling process to achieve that perfectly voluminous look?
S: no. I would scare them with my deep voice
G: will you just think about it?
S: not alllllll the alcohol in the world could convince me to do a "vuh-log"

SO ... I think there's hope. I really do.

I'm guessing you have zero questions for Simace (or J or Bash) but if you do (how often do we clip the kids nails? Is Sebastian a natural blonde?) ... you can leave them anonymously or not anonymously or email me or blink them via Morse code and I'm sure I'll catch them somehow. And if there's nothing ... we'll just delete this post on the sly and pretend it never happened. Don't tell me you don't do that.

So ... fire away before Simon sees this ... please?


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scenes from dinner with the Pattons ... Simon made Julia a "kwementime" crown and she let it adorn her mullet for the entirety of the meal. we like to party. Here's a clip of the (not) funny.

Are you part of any Secret Santa/Advent Angel/Whatever Whatev exchanges this year? (I'm not, Simon is ... that popular boy) Check out Kayla, Janssen, and RA's superb gift guides where every single idea is $5 or less. Believe it. 

The Soon Maternity challenge will resume next week with the third of four outfits (breath held? me too) but in the mean time you can double check that you voted for someone (ahem) en el contest. Or don't.

It was my favorite funny lady's birthday yesterday and she gifted us with a hysterical post. Go read it, laugh, and wish her a belated GOLDEN goodie.

I'm really hoping Meg (Simon's sister's best friend ... you follow? good) starts a blog soon (yesterday?) but until she does you can click and swoon over her gorgeous wedding featured on Style Me Pretty recently.

I la-la-la-loved reading every single one of the 80 (!!)  What I Wore to Thanksgiving Dinner posts and especially loved that my mom and sisters took part ... complete with a belly button heart pose and all.

I asked and she graciously answered ... get all of Kelly's beauty tips right here ... right now

Andddd finally ... enjoy this hilarious food for thought dessert from resurrected blogger Rebecca.

And that's all she typed.

32 weeks

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26 November 2012

tunic (it's the best) - Old Navy Maternity
cardigan - Target
leggings - Old Navy
boots - Hunter

apparently this pose isn't that hard to emulate/copycat/mock according to Bettina ...
my mother.

laugh it up ... funnily enough the name "Bettina" has suddenly been yanked out of contention if the baby is a little lady.

Anyway ... where was I? Oh yes ... my predictable poses ...

looking tired and puffy and puffy and a lot like I did at 35 weeks along with Sebastian.

What can I report? Nothing exciting. I feel good and either the baby has dropped or my rib cage has expanded significantly because I can breathe freely once again and the heart burn has all but vanished just as quickly as it came a few weeks ago.  I think my "belly butt" (as Julia calls it) is starting to protrude which is a pregnancy first which is also something you didn't care to know. Thanks to some growth regression in betwixt appointments, my doctor put an ixnay on the unningray and suggested I go ahead and take up speed walking instead. Yes, speed walking. I assured her that my wogs were far less strenuous than any sort of speed walking I might take part in but she was adamant. I'm working my way up to medium walking and am positive that when the bell has grown 10 cm in two weeks time she will give me strict instructions to start training for a wogging marathon immediately.

We're not even kind of settled on any names and I think last night's quote c/o Simon went a little something like, "you realize the baby will have to live with this name their ENTIRE life, right?" after my 6th rejected suggestion. Pray for peace in our home. 

Other items of potential interest:
32 weeks of Sebastian

What I Wore Sunday

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25 November 2012

1. staring off into the abyss that contains our neighbors' wheelchair ramp
2. ditched the plaid noose and went with a natural hand placement

Upon his arrival home this morning Simon gave me one look and asked the question you're probably dying to ask, "is that vest made out of hamster fur?"

Why yes, of course it is.

When I don't sleep my face gets puffy and when I'm pregnant my face gets puffy. So because I slept from 6:00 - 6:20 laaaaaate last night/eaaaaaaaarly this morning (thank you mice, paranoia, paranoia, and season 3 of Felicitdumb) and the baby having just celebrated his/her 32 week interior birthday ... Puff the Magic Grace Face.

Anyway, Simon and I are in serious disagreement over whether or not we should put up our faux tree because he says Sebastian will tear it down immediately (probable truth) but I'm still not over last year's Christmas where we put up an ornamentless tree for 3 seconds in our room upstairs that no one ever sees/saw like grinch-scrooges. Hopefully I can recreate some sort of It's a Wonderful Life scene tonight and convince him to be daring --- Basher the Destroyer and all and hopefully it doesn't turn into some sort of Christmas with the Kranks showdown of "I told you so's" and "I told you so's".

the 'fit (not rented in its entirety from Men's Wearhouse ... shockingly):
pants: Forever XXI
tuxedo shirt: Old Navy
shoes: Blowfish (c/o)
vest: Petsmart via eBay

kids' Mass behavior grades:
Julia: A-
Sebastian: A-
I suspect they were swimming in the happiness that was 'Daddy's finally home and Mommy's scowl is finally fading' and 'if you want a cafeteria donut ... we have to see Jesus first' bribery.

Linking up with the fine ladies over at Fine Linen and Purple. You should do the same.

Let's Get Ready to Gruuuuumble . . .

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24 November 2012

I hope the song that the title is parodied after is now stuck in your head. Hope hope hope.

Will this weekend ever end? It's just so painfully long and blessedly cheery, isn't it? Simon is back at the hospital for another 25 hour stint with his laboring ladies and I'm here to laboriously type about it. I think the kids and I just might tire enough of hair pulling (them: each others, me: my own) that we'll have to venture out into the great land of evil consumerism and the not reason for the season with all the other bloodhounds. And I think the kids and I just might find it enjoyable ... even if we hit up crazytown. We can only go on so many walks around the neighborhood ... admire the diligent folk that are stringing outdoor Christmas lights, find so many ginorm blow-up turkeys (you people with the yard ornaments are nuts and I love you for it) and stop to stare and say "turkeys say ... 'gobble, gobble' " before we start to zone out and graffiti the street ...
they really should've nailed those cones to the asphault or maybe put up 78 more. I take only partial blame for defacing mother nature's pristine canvas. I think this was when Julia had run out of body parts to complain about "huwting" and had moved onto telling me about Sebastian's ailments ... which he appreciated.

I've never had an anxiety or a heart attack but I think after Thursday's 25 hours-o-joy I started to get a little itchy and thinking I just might have one at the thought of today's joyous shift. The wind was howling and shaking the doors and the windows at the alarming rate of "I know it's just the wind but it sounds oddly similar to a predator" around midnight on Thursday but I took it in stride and only moved my freak out meter to a 3 but then when I heard actual scratching at the kitchen door I nearly fainted by way of petrification. Turns out it is was nothing to worry about ... just overreact over: two lone beady-eyed mice (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!). I was in the middle of emailing Jen (oh, you don't creepily email reality stars in the middle of the night? that's odd) and am too embarrassed to go back and look at the outgoing message I pelted her way because it probably most definitely contains some totally inappropriate language. I camped out on the dining room table until I could talk myself down from the crazycliff and sprinted upstairs where I could put a safety barrier of Sebastian between me and the monsters.

I'm tempted to type about the molars the size of what Goliath's first born would've weighed that Julia is in the middle of cutting but I think I've thrown enough feel-goody fuzzies your way for today.

Thanks for letting me Dear Blog it, yet again. It's always nice to go back and read about the holidays that Simon works and thank the good Lord that those holidays come but once a year and these rotations do eventually come to a welcome end.

Toothy (and topless but with molars!) grin.

7 Quick Takes

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23 November 2012

Joining Jen over at Conversion Diary for another installation of quick takes. You should too.

1. Hmmmmmmmmmm ... to type about Thanksgiving or not to type about Thanksgiving? Let's use Sunshine's morning faces to analogize ...

It started out like ...
maybe this won't be SO bad ...

and then we got to see Simon and eat some traditional Thanksgiving fare ...
and that was really nice ...

and then things took a tumble for the frustrating and all of a sudden there was a diaper situation and a curling iron (styling wand?) burn and toddlers fighting like a senile married couple and and a never ever ending stream of super duper urgent unintelligible needs and I don't know ...
it was not fun.

I was just embarrassingly proud of myself for not succumbing to the lure of the Netflix-sitter before the hour of 6pm and serving a dinner of chicken nuggets WITH "thomas" (hummus) and ice cream (yogurt) instead of a dinner of solely chicken nuggets, one child was bathed at one point in the day, and I learned to never not be extremely grateful for any future years that Simon doesn't work Thanksgiving or Christmas. Onward and upward and not looking backward on Thanksgiving 2k12 with fond memories. Oh vell.

2. Let's talk about something more American than Thanksgiving ... TV!! While I wait patiently for the really best best shows to return in January (ahem, Downton and the Bachelor) I've been faithful to my Hulu watching while sort of working out to my muted exercise muses on our little screen TV.

3. We'll start with Nashville ... How can you not adore Connie Britton?
Her hair and her everything. Love it all.

How can you stand Hayden Panettiere?
and this girl's (talking) voice?

If they could just stop the whole political plot line and focus more on el music and the romance ... I wouldn't complain one single bit. This is probably my favorite show right now. Probably. Although I do love ...

4. The Mindy Project ... Simon doesn't love it but I think Mindy Kaling is hilario.
And while her job seems a little too unrealistic and not busy as an obstetrician ... I still get irrationally angry when Hulu "locks" the latest episode from its viewers. Why do they do that? It does not make me want to purchase Hulu+ so please stop it.

5. Call the Midwife ... I've only watched the pilot but this is as close to a Downton substitute that I've found for now.
Simon watched it with me and seemed to enjoy it. I really appreciated the fact that they didn't portray the family with 24 (or was it 25?) kids as totally insane but actually pretty happy. We'll see where they run with the line they threw in about a "magic potion" to stop "it".

6. Parenthood ... (Ellen wrote allllll about it here -- best to read her take). Every single one of the characters, except for Julia's husband Joel, annoys me but this is still the show I check for new episodes week after week so they can't really annoy me that much. There have been too many tear jerking moments with Kristina's cancer and I am emotionally invested enough that if she dies I just might be a big puddle of devastated. Let's keep her around ... if only for her weirdly perfect stay at home mom hair

that I can only assume is to to make up for Haddie's hair-trocity ... ?

7. Modern Family ... Not as funny this year as seasons past but still funny enough to keeeeeeeep on watching. I appreciate Gloria's pregnancy induced crazy and am willing to bet a lot of money that she has a girl. Cam will forever be my favorite character and I just want to shackle Clare to a wall and feed her multiple doses of chill pills.

Are there any true gems I'm missing? Probably. Am I feeding my soul heaping helpings of edification by watching all of this trash? Super probably.

Go see Jen for more and muchas gracias to all the pretty ladies for linking up yesterday (you still have 21 days to do so if you want to join the fiesta loca) ... I found lots of new blogs to read in between sessions of french braiding Julia's hair and listening to Sebastian read aloud from his favorite chapter book.

What I Wore to Thanksgiving Dinner Link-Up

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22 November 2012

Here we are in all of our thrifted, gifted, eBayed, and clearance racked glory. The shoot with Mr. Geri A. Tric and Helga went about as well as I'd imagined it would ...

nothing frameable or Christmas card worthy which is pretty standard like always. I enlisted the help of the self timer to try and get a decent of overbearing mother complete with "oh, you're not due till January?!" belly with her sweet cubs ...
until our brand new (young and hip and pretty and young) neighbor pulled into her driveway that we were photobombing ... during that second and last photo. Yes. I was about as mortified as I should've been ("oh, just teaching my children a little lesson in vanity") and she just sort of awkwardly smiled, nodded, and speedwalked into the safety of her new abode where her weirdo neighbors couldn't try to make her acquaintance or attempt to force a kindred spirit type of friendship of which I had been sort of hopeful.

Anything for the blog, I suppose.

Hopefully you had a loved/liked one snapping your photos and weren't caught in a similar situashe.

the fundown:
dress - Forever XXI
blazer - Anne Klein (that's right) from my phone answering/fax sorting days
shoes - Minnetonka
scarf - Express from Emily

the funnerdown:
kids' shirts/sweater: Kangaroo Kids
pants: gifts from the grands
shoes: eBay (extra Wide for Bash)
do you care: of course 

And as a little bonus ... for any scrooges in the making ... the kids and I have found that this song (from the radio, nothing cool or unique or original here - ever) kicks stubborn cases of the grumps rather quickly and efficiently. Hope it works for you too.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Thank you so much for reading and being the nicest readers on all of the internet. I can't wait to see you in all of your nicely clothed glory. Don't have a blog? I think today would be the perfect day to start one ... I'm handing you your first post idea on a platter. A silver platter.

And now we're off like a herd of turtles to our first of three scheduled trips to the hospital cafeteria and maybe to see Simone if we're lucky little ducks.

What I Wore to Thanksgiving Dinner {link-up tomorrow!!}

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21 November 2012

Hopefully you'll be face deep in your favorite sides, favorite desserts (am I the only smartie that hates pumpkin pie?), conversations with your favorite relatives and maybe even taking part in one of those family football games I see so much of on the romcoms and you'll be FAR too busy to even think about blogs or blogging. Hopefully. But you are going to get dressed! Or ... at least your thorax will be covered, I would imagine?

For those of you that can't get your acts together enough to schedule a neat and pretty Grateful For ...  post, or for those of you that can and did and want to go the extra vapid centimeter, I'm formally inviting you to coerce someone into snapping a photo of your Thanksgiving finery ... I'll be here with my little pilgrims ready, eager and waiting with a link-up.  Get excited.

(I am 100% rerunning this outfit on Thursday so erase it from your memory. Thanks)

It's been so fun clicking around and seeing what everyone has been wearing on Sundays over at Fine Linen and Purple that I thought (stupidly?? time will tell) that it'd be fun to do the same on Thanksgiving just for stares and gobbles (you like that? I know). I cleared it with the originators so all my copycatting and plagiarism is above board and honest as Abraham.

We'll see if I can convince Julia and Sebastian to change out of their matching black stretch pants ... or not ... and post our photo with the linkup on Thursday. Hopefully you'll e-join us for the festivities. I'll leave the link list open for a week or three because 'tis the season for giving and procrastinating.

Need some inspiritaion? Of course you don't but I'll give you some anyway:

Ain't No Mom Jeans never ever disappoints, Jill always puts together the best outfit boards, I think anything Kendi wears would absolutely work, Caroline is the most stylish mom I e-know, Elaine is a professional baby bump dresser, I love Ashley's OOTD instagrams and sometimes she posts them on her cute blog, this is my new favorite fashion blog, Kelsey the cutest Iowan, my fellow (better) OTIers Kayla and Erica, Meggie (my favorite Kansas City fashion guru), Katie (my favorite Kansas City thriftonista), I love every single one of Kimmie's outfits always, I missed Dwija's WWIS post this week but she is a stunner, Ana JUST had a baby and she looks seriously incredible, Natalie has a knack for curating awesome looking outfits, Kelly kills me with her outfit photos, and I'm hoping Cari will entertain us with her hilarity and a pair of shoes from her killer collection.

Ladies I'm shamelessly begging to join the part-ay:

Jenny (stoop to my level for a hot sec?), I really want to see Amy'sJanssen's, Francine's, Alisha's, Kelly Jo's, Natalie's, Lizzie's, Jenna's, Cynthia's, Sarah's, Amber's, JD's, Emily's bumps in action, Meg (cutest new mom, ever), Ann (please?!), Sheena and her little fashionistas, Farrah (you know you're tempted), Kate and handsome Henry, Marjorie and sweet Evie, stylish mom Beth, bride-to-be Tess, hilarious Angie, super mom Katie, modelesque Brooke, Christy (loved her Sunday outfit this week, loved), classy DConite Lori, lovely Liesl, cute mom of 4 Ashley, sweet Alaythea, super-woman-in-the-kitchen Janel, professional beauty guru Laura, newlywed Ashley, mom/chef extraordinaire Sarah, brand new mom Laura, Roxy (resurrect your blog for the cause?), natural beauty Rebekah, adorable new blogger Mary, runnermom and funnymom Jen, witty and pretty Jessie, Alexandra (I miss your blog!), Ellen (can you peer pressure your sisters, too?) hysterical Lisa (you know you wanna ...) perfectly imperfect Kate, my sister (pull mom and Sarah into the pic!) Emily, and she did it once this past Sunday ...  will Colleen kindly do it again for me? I hope yes.

and I'm guessing the following would rather roast and serve themselves for dinner rather than participate but I'll plead anyway:

Jen (yes, I went there), Kathleen (are you even a little bit tempted?!), Paige (wordsmiths gotta get dressed too!), Kate (prettiest of pleases?), Hallie (you can't have all those awesomely fashionable giveaways and not entertain the idea of participating!), Mandy (I can dream), Jessica (at least on el instagram, maybe?), Kristen (did I mention ... begging?), Ria (even mildly interested?), Maureen (surprise me?), Anne (if Maureen does it ... will you?) and Adrienne (blog comeback blog comeback blog comeback!).

If I missed you it's because I've been refereeing a face scratching/hair pulling/body mauling war betwixt my little angels and I can only do 43 things at once.

I REALLY hope you join me. Really. (Tell your husband, tell your kids ...)

and I really hope you have a nice Thanksgiving eve. Really.

past linkups:
first blog posts ever

Soon Maternity Challenge: Week Two

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20 November 2012

We're b-a-a-a-a-ck . . .

Do you remember last week's outfit? Of course you don't. You're busy and you're stressed and have a lot on your mind. Me too ... minus the busy and stressed and a lot on my mind, I guess.

This week me and my fellow gestators are wearing Soon Maternity's Classic Shirt. I think everyone else opted to go the timeless white route while I went wild with powder pink.

Behold ...

I don't have to tell you how much I would love if you voted for me but it's a free internet and you can vote for whomever you'd like but you can definitely vote for me (or not). All you have to do to vote is "like" my photo or leave a comment OR go all out and do both and you will automatically be entered (again!! if you voted/commented last week) to win a $150 gift card to Soon Maternity. I was sincerely blown away by all your kind votes last week and I need to figure out an adequate thank you gift that I can e-give. I'll keep you posted.

(Are you getting sick of head-to-toe photos of Grace in the driveway looking downward at the super interesting asphalt? I know. I am too.)

If you're in a giving and generous mood you can click here to vote or click the photo or click here. A huge thank you in advance. You're doing great ... two outfits down .... and two more to go. You can do it.

Thank you (!!) to infinity ... and beyond. 

Simon Says

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19 November 2012

"I think we've read to Sebastian a total of two times in his whole life ... and I think it shows."

After discovering that we seem to have permanently lost our spare set of van keys, Simon very seriously said, "well, we'll just be living on the edge I guess."

One early morning before he even opened his eyes, Simon said, "No more studying before I go to bed because my dreams revolve entirely around periods."

Out of the blue Simon asked, "do you ever gaze lovingly at the kids' belly buttons because that is how they were attached to you in the womb?"

While reminiscing about the inception of Simace, Simon sweetly said, "it was pretty much love and frustration at first conversation and not much has changed since then."

After spending some quality hours with a teething (?!?!) Julia, Simon said, "she is 1 part cute and 99 parts demon."

A real helicopter of a dad recently dramatically and valiantly "rescued" Sebastian at the playground after he sprinted 8 whole feet from an irresponsible sitting-on-the-bench Simon and offered, "looks like he might need a Kleenex!" -- Simon (very, very quietly) responded, "looks like you might need to shut the feck* up."

On that same trip to the playground as we pulled up and saw the crowds of kids with hovering parentals crawling all over the play structures, Simon sighed to himself, "I hate the playground."

*family friendly censorship always.

Giveaway: Minnetonka Moccasins

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Apparently I've been sitting nice and comfy under a very large rock for lots of years because I just recently discovered the amazing that is Minnetonka. You're probably familiar with the fact that they reach a whole new level of comfort but don't even begin to dip into any sort of frumpy, dowdy, or orthoticy-looking territories. It was love at first, second, and trillionth wear. Hopefully the newness and excitement of the relationship will have worn off by the time summer comes along because I don't imagine sheep skin would mix very pleasantly with foot sweat ... time will tell.

Minnetonka did their charitable deed for life and featured the chief female of the Camp over on their blog today AND (best of ALL) they are giving away a pair of moccasins to one of you fine ladies (or lone gentleman?). You even get to choose between three different styles (Driving Moccs, Sheep Skin Side Zip Fringe Boot, or the Suede Ankle Boot) and exercise that right to autonomy.

You know how we do with the Rafflecoptering ... I hope you win. I love a good shoe e-twin.

Get after it.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What I Wore Sunday

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18 November 2012

"I definitely got a good one." - Simon

Here's the best of the goods which is obviously great.

I'm becoming a bit of a black widow that isn't actually a widow and is obviously with child because all I want to do is wear black, black, and more black with a splash of brown and neutral to keep things spicy. We went to the playground after Mass to try to squeeze allllll the energy out of the kids so that they would take the best naps of their lives and Simon gave me an up-down and had lots of questions about ladies fashion and the differences between dresses, tunics, and shirts. I think he concluded that I was wearing an inappropriately short dress that should be marketed as a shirt but gets away with the old "tunic" excuse. He would be right except that he's wrong because modesty leggings are involved.

We were 10 minutes late for a 30 minute Mass and after communion but before the final blessing the huffy lady behind me gave me a little shoulder tap and not-whispered that a runaway fruit snack had fallen out of my pocket and onto my (her word!!!!) "heiny". I don't know if I was more embarrassed for myself and my sticky heiny or for her 64-year-old self for tattle tailing on a one-year-old's future afternoon snack.

it's all in the 'tails:
tunic: Gap Maternity
leggings: Old Navy
boots: Famous Footwear

Mass Behavior Grades:
Julia: C- (complained that every part of her body hurt - even her dress)
Bash: D+ (pretended to seize for the majority of the celebration)

Linking up with the fine ladies of Fine Linen and Purple ... again.

I need to stop posting at night ... I sound so angry. 

7 Quick Takes

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16 November 2012

Joining Jen for another round of giving this week. Have you seen the trailer for her reality show? I can't wait. I can't do it. If you watch it, you'll probably notice that she has the most perfectly shaped eyebrows. She shouldn't feel weird that I noticed. 

1. Earlier this evening I asked Julia what we should name the baby. She generously gave me a few options. For a girl her first choice is "Cookie" and her second choice is "Dora". For a boy she likes "Dora Boy" and "Diego".

2. My mom came for a brief visit this week and very kindly watched the kids while Simon and I went out last night. I never ever ever worry about Sebastian's behavior or emotional health when I leave the kids with sitters but always check in to see how Julia is behaving/coping/dealing in my absence.
  Don't ask me why.

I texted Grandma Bettina asking about Julia ~40 minutes into our date while Simon successfully resisted the urge to roll his eyes. She responded simply that Julia was fine but that "Bash is a crazy destroyer and is throwing everything away."
Yep. If he gains a few more pounds on little J - I have no doubt that he'll be chucking her bottom into the trash when he tires of pulling her hair for a giggle.

3. Odds seem to be good that I'm going to have to take the kids to my next OB appointment that will involve an ultrasound because my usual sitter seems to think her nursing classes trump my peace of mind and tranquility. The staff assured me it wouldn't be a problem to bring them but know that visions of Sebastian biting the nurse when he gets bored (12 seconds in), Julia refusing to dismount from my person, Sebastian dismantling and emptying the the sharps disposal container, and Julia talking about Sebastian's most recent pungent diaper feat are all dancing in my head. It should be a scream.

4. Yes, I'm still typing about the pregnancy. Worse or equal to droning on about that c!r!a!z!y! dream I had that was SO c!r!a!z!y! and SO weird last night? Worse. With Julia's pregnancy all I wanted to eat was ice cream and peanut butter (and I did) while with Sebastian's gestational period I couldn't inhale enough grocery store sushi but with this baby I can't stop thinking and dreaming about Naked Juice ... specifically the Green Machine variety. You know, the one that makes you think you're drinking broccoli and health but the first six ingredients listed are a fruity puree of some sort? I think/know there are 50+ grams of sugar in each bottle. I'm averaging two bottles a day right now. Stopping. Unless you'd like to hear all about ...

5. my favorite maternity top ever ever ever? No? Fine.

6. I'm trying really hard not to dread Thanksgiving this year since Simon will leave for work WAY before we wake up and won't get back until Friday morning WAY after we've risen for the day. I'm failing. At least the kids don't even kind of get it and you better believe I'll not be lifting a single finger in the kitchen in lieu of testing out the hospital cafeteria's holiday fare -- whether Simon is available to join us or not. Is that a hint of sunshiney optimism I'm smelling? Never.

7. It seems like everyone has written a post on NFP this year and I'm hesitant to write one myself because everyone's already typed about it and typed about it well. Camp Patton always loses a few followers following a post on NFP which absolutely does not/will not stop me from forging ahead but I don't want to offend anyone. I've had terrible insomnia lately and these are the things my exciting mind mulls over.

Off to refill my wine glass with odorless garlic, spirulina, and refined poison.

(I feel like these are all so serious ... I promise I'm smiling right this second. Wink.)

Go see Jen for all the betters.


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1. throwing away everything except the finery on their backs ... again
2. shackled

3. why yes I can walk slower. watch and cry.
4. cafeteria donut high

5. weekend call is the worst
6. so many consecutive hours with that wife of yours

7. still hoping for a repeat of this. not optimistic.
8. how can we explain to our keepers that the zoo is rarely to never actually fun?

9. this "treat" makes absolutely no sense
10. Forever 0-3 Months sent these bottoms over. You like?

11. stat paging a certain Explorer
12. call weekends? the best.

13. does my hair
14. make me look fat?

Do you over-insta like I do? Tell me more.

I saw the sign

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14 November 2012

I don't know what I hate the most:
1. my life
2. the fact that you are taking a mostly nude photo of me in the mirror with your cell phone
3. that hideous face you're making OR
4. the permanent marker scribbles on your nails

Greetings from the week that I thought might kill me and the kids.

It didn't!! It won't.

It's only Wednesday and Ace of Base came on the van's radio today and renewed our spirits and I think we just might make it. Sebastian is still on the fence with his hydrant of a nose and new penchant for brooding but things finally started to look straight ahead instead of straight down to hell this morn. Tomorrow I'm going to aim for one Sebastian smile and one heavenward tilt of our heads because I'm an optimist as you well know.

Without getting too "is she speaking English or is she speaking medical technical?" on you I'll just report that I decided to take my life threatening heartburn out of the incapable hands of generic tropical flavored antacids and threw the flames at a more serious balm of a minty and much stronger variety. Also, after a long date with the dentist and my insanely sensitive gums, lots of lettuce thrown at a lot of Benzocaine, and many days of a liquid diet ... I've graduated back to eating solid, luke warm oatmeal.

Julia hasn't skipped a beat in any life realm and has actually accomplished quite a bit these past few days ...
Admiring weeks of practice and concentration. Oh, how I wish I were kidding.

Also ... her vocabulary is really taking off and probably her greatest stride is that she's started calling the refrigerator a "bidge" which sounds exactly like "bitch"

And ...
All of a sudden she is talking to anyone and anything about anything and everything
bumps into the door on accident? "sorry, door."
walking upstairs? "bye basement."
Sebastian returns from a 4 second sojourn to the next room? "I missed you, Bashy!"

I call the method that bears such sweet fruit "unschooling" -- you'll have to Google it because it's all very complicated and I'm actually in the middle of lesson planning right this second.

No rest for the mothers/educators/sickly/professional photographers.

Soon Maternity Challenge: Week One

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13 November 2012

When I was pregnant with Sebastian last fall Soon Maternity kindly asked me to take part in their first annual style challenge along with some other pregnant bloggers. It took me about .08 seconds to eagerly agree but by the time the clothing arrived from the Soon headquarters in Australia ... Sebastian had already made his earthly debut. 99% yay and 1% hiss. I forgave him and eventually got over it and shipped the clothing to the pretty Kelsey Williams and guess what? She won! As luck would have it ... Soon Maternity is hosting the challenge once again (!!!) and this time this baby decided to cooperate and stay put through arrival of the adorable maternity clothing and all the photo taking. 100% yay and 0% hiss.

Over the course of the next four weeks you can vote for your favorite maternity looks via Soon Maternity's Facebook page.

I won't beg you to vote for my photos but I can't promise not to take it personally if you don't. Just kidding. The competition is a little to a lot intimidating and I'll never know if you vote for one of The Others.

As soon as you vote (by liking your favorite look) you'll be in the running to win a $150 dollar gift card to Soon Maternity. So ... you don't have to be entirely selfless with your good deed for the day ... there's a little something in it for you.

And without further rambles ... here's the first outfit:
(Don't worry, neither of the kids emancipated themselves from the Camp and I promise that I am really pregnant with number three ... my secretary, Sebastian sent over the wrong info as we are still working on our counting. He'll get it soon, I hope.)

I'll (as least annoyingly as possible ... mom's honor) keep you posted when the other outfits are posted and would be SUPER appreciative of your vote in the mean time. Thanks so much! 

And thanks to Soon Maternity for hosting and letting me take part en el challenge!

the weekend

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12 November 2012

Checking in from the land of the faucet noses and swollen glands to share some grainy evidence of our weekend.

1. Carol Brady does Chipotle
2. Notorious B.A.S.H. down for the serious count
3. Is this collage as depressing as I think it looks? So sorry.

Julia's hair has since been washed and styled and Sebastian is just well enough to be back to his I-hate-to-be-held/pinned ways ... fret not.

The kids are up to their usual antics today with Julia attacking Sebastian's whole face with a whole tube of lipstick and Sebastian destroying an entire Costco container of blackberries. I'm counting the minutes until I can slide into the dangerous shackles of a dental recliner this afternoon and trying to decide which is worse: spending some quality time at my least favorite place of all time or continuing to live with this sudden and unbearable tooth pain that won't let me sleep or even look at a non-liquid calorie without almost dying, crying, and repeating. If I live to tell about the torture ... you know where I'll be posting first. This is a committed relationship that I take very seriously. Stay tuned.


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