Saturday, November 29, 2008

Why babywearing rocks (1) ~ 4 wheel vacuuming

How do you get your dishes done with a needy baby???

I remember a day in age when I got up an extra 45 minutes early everyday to shower...put on my hair. I cared what other people thought of my appearance. I could NEVER in a million years imagine that I would be running around in my two day old jammies... publishing my "mommy butt" on YouTube.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Don't grow up too fast sweet girl

This picture was taken of Lucy after she fell asleep nursing. I stared at her imagining what she would be like...what she would look like. I know, the imagery is strange... but so is the concept of my baby being a woman one day.

Flashback Friday

I hear the comment "wow, that baby looks just like you!" very often. This is Lucy in the top picture... amazing how genetics works!

"I want to do it!!!" Haircut

When its too quiet...I get scared
I had not heard fighting coming from the playroom this morning...which is not normal for my two. I went in to check out the action and Max and Katy were giving her barbie a haircut... at some point she had turned the scissors on her own hair. UGH...she has been hinting at this for weeks since her professional haircut...the "I wannta doit myseeeelf"... no Katy-Ro not a good idea...anyway...its not tooo bad...a big chunk on the top is missing (this was last nights pic btw) She wont sit still for a "haircut" pic...however you should see the doll if I can find it! LOL :) I'll post later after I find that doll.

What disastrous things have YOUR children done to themselves???

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dinner Time!! ~ "Monsters in my room!!"

Growing up, one of my fondest memories was sitting down to eat dinner with my family every night. Although life was hectic and everyone had a busy schedule we always found time together at 6:00.(God help us if we were late :) I really look forward to having the same tradition with my own family.

Dinner time right now with young kids is just a challenge and most nights its just surviving it. Andy gets home from work at 7:00 and that's just tooooo late to feed the babies. The kids are also too big for boosters now so dinner usually consists of "Please don't get up from the table" x 20 (per kid)... I recently implemented a 6:00-6:30 dinner rule... if they are too busy goofing off to eat their dinner...despite warnings that clean up is at 6:30...the plates are removed and dinner is over. I don't budge on this rule... a few nights I have been begged for food come bed time ..."nope sorry,...dinner was at may have more food in the morning"... hence why they are eating so nicely in the pictures :) lol... I think the battle was about always seem to do the opposite of what the parent wants. When given an easy choice I think they feel more empowered (thus more easily persuaded...ha! :) they could play quietly in there room if they said that they weren't hungry...or eat with the family...during dinner time. I would rather not battle about food... I think forcing a child to eat when they say they aren't hungry is setting them up for food issues down the road. I know my kids get enough to eat... this is about empowering them to make the choice that wont leave them hungry at bedtime. (and leave me with more hair on my head :)

So I get called to the rescue tonight... up until now, I thought that bed monsters were just a cliche kid thing... nope!...My 4 year has one under his bed..(wink wink...just a ploy to get me to snuggle with him) So I come in and in his very animated 4 year old voice describes how this monster came out from under his bed and made... this face... really this exact face :)
So appeasing his crazy imagination I went with it... (I know... that's a terrible idea....(snicker) ...soooo after checking under the bed and in the closets.."nope, nope...I think there gone.". I got just as intense as he was being... "Max!" ..."Yes mommy, what is it????"... "I have JUST the thing for your monster problem!"... "REALLY???? what is it!!" ... "I have a magic green bracelet that will keep you safe!" I pulled off my rubber green glow in the dark bracelet from my wrist and showed it to him... .... .... "How's it work?" ... "Well, I need to charge it up for the night and it will be good to go." ... I held up the rubber bracelet to the light bulb in his room and turned out the lights. "look max, the magic inside the bracelet will keep you safe from monsters..." "Wooooooow...thats cooool!"... "Goodnight mommy!"


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Speed Knitting!

How is that possible... I can't even blink that fast :)

Help I'm Knitting!...SpiderMax...Get it together Beck!

This crazy craft should be called "self medicating with yarn" was its becoming sort of an obsession. I wonder if I don't have a touch of OCD...hmm.

Anyway, I went to JoAnns last night to pick up more yarn and decided to buy some knitting needles also... I love the look of knit...less bumpy and more organized that crochet. I youtube'd knitting basics and got started. I am a lefty by heart...but because I'm a weirdo... (God made me skill challenged by giving me the "ambidextrous" gift.) I have to try doing things (like Knitting and crochet), with both hands to see what feels right.

This is what I got done once I was able to figure out the basics...and get the "feel" of this craft. However its not turning out how I thought It would...PLEASE suggestions!

Other fun things to do with yarn include...making a "SpiderMax" web on your outdoor play set...I got tired of him climbing on furniture today so I gave him at load of yarn...bundled him up and kicked his hyper butt out the back door...of course he insisted that he wear his spidy jams over his clothes...what a goof!

I feel myself making this face more often than not recently. I had a rough morning with the kids today...and I had to see what my kids were seeing...not pretty...nope...not at all. (sigh) I just don't feel like a good mom these days...I am having such a hard time dealing with this funk that I am in... goodness, yesterday the first thing out of my mouth was... "I'm so tired, I don't feel like being a mom today...all I want to do is sleep." I am so desperate for ME time... that I stay up WAAAAY too late cramming as much alone time as I can before I'm called to snuggle someone...or breastfeed... so In addition to this seasonal depression I've exhausted myself trying to help myself feel better...does that make sense??? Andy yesterday, said "OMG, Becky put some eye drops in you're scaring me!"

What do you do to stay above water????

Sunday, November 23, 2008

DIY BabyLegs ~ Video Tutorial

I wanted to put up a video on DIY babylegs for those that are "visual" learners. I hope it helps :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

You know its time to clean out the couch when...

The old food starts growing a face...HA! Seriously guys...pulled this old noodle out of my sofa today looking for a crochet hook that the couch was trying to eat. I never saw this before...I'm guessing it was a project at Max's school.

This was what I was making with my crochet hook. I am so proud of myself :) I didn't even use a pattern. I discovered how to do the "S" pattern in the stripes by accident. I was trying to shrink the rows down so that the hat didn't inadvertently become a place mat. I liked the way it looked, so I went with it. Its has a cute little brim and a massive pom-pom on the crown.

OOOOH yeah, I almost forgot...the yarn is made from post consumer plastic cool is that??? Read about it here!

Friday, November 21, 2008

3 under DO you DO it????

The living room is our "get ready" zone...the kids are not allowed to do ANYTHING...except pee... until they are dressed in the AM. This is usually only implemented on days that Max has preschool. Max can pretty much get himself ready, but he needs to stand next to me so that I make sure he completes the task.

I am NOT at all a morning person, so the less conflict obviously the better mood I am in...and the less yelling I do. Our day usually starts at 7:45-8ish... I pick the kids clothes out as I wake them up... and herd them into the living room... one by one I help get them dressed.... then its breakfast... usually oatmeal, cereal, yogurt and bagel... if I'm feeling really adventurous... I will make eggs and pancakes on a school morning. I don't primp my hair is never done... I wash faces and get socks, shoes and coats on. Then they sit...ha...all bundled up while I get Max's lunch ready. at 8:40 I get Lucy packed up in her car seat... give everyone something to carry and we go out to the car. The kids can let themselves in... and I snap seat belts.

At Max's school... Lucy usually goes on my back in the Boo... Max has his back pack and Katy-ro carries the lunch sack... truly the mornings are the most complicated part of the day... Sooooo... that's really how I do it...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tasty Tuesday ~ Black Bean Soup

  • I can say that hands down, one of the BEST things to do for a new family is cook them a meal. I can't be more grateful for my friends that rallied with all three babies and brought food to us. Although I will say at the end of the first 3 weeks I was pretty "red sauced" out :) So with the baby boom going on around me, I have been busy making "new baby" of my FAVORITE meals that was brought to me when I had Lucy was this Black Bean Soup.

    1tbsp CUMIN
    1tbsp OLIVE OIL
  • Chop the celery, carrots, onion and garlic and put into a LARGE pot with olive oil to saute. Add Cumin and Black pepper depending on how spicy the family likes it.

  • While the veggies are sauteing, put the beans and tomato's (don't drain) into a food processor and quick blend so that they mixture is still a bit chunky. ADD mixture to the sauteed veggies.

  • Heat 3 cups of water with CHX bullion cubes and add to the pot.

  • Simmer on low for 3 hours stirring often so that the soup does not burn to the bottom of the did this for a friend about 3 months ago and accidentally burnt the bottom of the pan....I asked her husband if the soup was okay... he said it was good... but .... did you add coffee to the soup???

    Top with sour cream and serve with Tortillas... If the family is a "gluten free" family you can sub flour tortillas with GF corn tortillas. You can get GF canned beans and CHX bouillon in the health food section at your local store...most modern stores actually have a GF section to make this easy.

    What satisfys your post baby cravings???

Monday, November 17, 2008

"Miss Sassy Pants" ~ more DIY recycled baby!

More recycled clothing turned into fun baby items. I made these "Sassy Pants" (not sure why I'm calling them that...thought it was a cute name) from a super soft ribbed knit T-shirt. The applique was made from using old Bundleboo leg holes. It has a long waist so It fits a little saggy at the butt...but I did that purposely because I think its cute. I left some "raw" edges on the applique for a more vintage look after washing a few times.

The drawstring waist was a last minute decision... I like the way it looks and fits both Katy and Lucy with easy adjusting. They are also really cute with a pair of baby legwarmers :)

Motrin Slams babywearing!

What is this!!!??? A fellow blogger and my local FNL group picked up on this...its a big topic right now in the babywearing community. The babywearing community by the way...not only focuses on whats good for the baby...but what is best and most comfortable for the parent as well. This community that I am so deeply passionate is jam packed with innovation savvy parents that have devoted a ton of research, time and energy creating carriers that prevent pain and are a great benefit to any parent who chooses to carry their child.

UGH! Carrying your child is not a FAD... its essential for a healthy parent/child development...the benefits are countless to both parties. Wraps, slings, pouches...were created with the parents AND the child in mind. This is AD is insulting to me...I feel its trying to give the false impression that I carry my child to be TRENDY... and I suffer just to APPEAR to be a caring and attached mommy. POO ON YOU MOTRIN!!!

See HERE what "babywearing international" had to say about this... For those who don't know who BBW international is... they are a large world wide non-profit group with thousands of members and leaders that promote babywearing education and benefits.

UPDATE: Motrin just apologized for the controversy ...way to go mamas!!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sweet Sunday ~ Family time

(this picture is of 5 generations of women in my family)
Sunday dinners with the family are sacred...whether it be with Nana, Papa and GiGi or Gamma...its something that I hold dear and look so forward to every weekend. Today was extra special because now we have a new family member...congrats Joe and Allie (My brother and his wonderful girlfriend)! Welcome little Joeseph Ernesto (Joey)!!! He's soooo freckin adorable... (I'm sad that I don't have a picture to post of him yet)

We have a relatively small three up until the birth of little Joey were the only children in this generation. I knew that I would love a little nephew...but its amazing to me how the birth of a child changes the entire feel of a family. I feel closer to my brother that I ever have before...Joe and I are 6 years apart and never really got close. It was like a switch flipped in him the second that baby was born... when people say that a baby will change you... they aren't kidding. I see that little baby and I feel the same level of love that I do my with my own children...(is that possible....I guess so 'cause I'm feeling it) perhaps because I know in some branched off way he is a piece of me too... or perhaps because my heart swells to see my little brother growing up before my eyes... and in a nine month span the birth of little Joey has once and for all closed that 6 year gap between my brother and I ... now we are on the same playing field. Its weird.

Now that the kids are getting a bit older I actually have time to sit and talk on Sundays...which make this trip even more enjoyable for me. "GiGi" my grandmother has lived with my parents for the last ... oh gosh... 15+ years... and before that she spent alot of time watching my brother and I while my mom worked and my dad went to OTS (officer training school)... (GiGi...I know you're reading this... you are very special to me xoxoxoxo :) I feel really blessed that she has passed down the "crafty bug" to me and now I am suffering from the same addiction that she and my mother :) GiGi, is a life long pro at needlework...and after a really good lesson at crocheting today she handed down this book...

("Good Housekeeping's complete book of needlecraft")

How totally cool is this!!!! Published in 1959 it was guide to help teach my grandmother her craft...while my toddler mother colored on the pages. Its really a good book... at 2:00am I should be in bed but I had to master this shell crochet technique... Ugh this is going to be bad! lol... thank you GiGi!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

DIY~Recycled EC pants

A friend brought over some clothes that she no longer wanted...and I was able to make a pair of split crotch pants from a turtle neck...I cut off the arms to use as legs and used the neck of the shirt as a waist band... as you can see its a little big on Lucy...but she'll grow into it soon. I think I'm going to be making a lot more recycled alternative baby items...this is fun!!!
The idea to do this myself came from this blog although they demonstrate doing it from whole fabric...its possible to improvise a little as you can see.

Friday, November 14, 2008

WE FINALLY DID IT!!!!!!! ...Bundleboo flashback :)

Our patent finally published...Bundleboo is officially our intellectual baby! I want to say that ANYTHING is possible if you work hard enough and you have the courage to go for it.

(Grace in the front...Katy-Ro in the back...hands free for the two other toddlers I was chasing :)

I want to share this story with you as I believe it may inspire others who haven't yet built the "go for it" courage. It all started with an idea... Bundleboo was born almost 2 years ago out of my mothers kitchen. I had a love for babywearing and my wrap was a definite carrier of choice...of course two years ago babywearing had not gained the popularity that it has the public feedback as I carried my daughter was daunting. The mass amounts of comments included..."wow, that's really neat but I would be so afraid of my baby falling out" "that looks so comfortable...but I'm afraid I wouldn't do it right." Now, having done this awhile its easy for me to say that its truly a safe, comfortable and practical way to carry your child... but trying to convince an already nervous new mom that this simple piece of cloth is not as scary as it looks it a tough task.

(development of the twin carrier "tandem bundleboo" patented also :) you think there would be a real need for this carrier?)

I had just left my job to stay home with my babies...we were desperate for income so I started making wraps out of my kitchen...nothing special...just your traditional wrap carriers. My mother suggested that I do something totally unique...something that will make my carriers stand out from the rest. So we put our heads together and brainstormed... my mom suggested a pleated pouch style pocket that could go under the baby's butt...I took her idea to the drawing board... Realizing that the pocket would still not be enough to ensure "peace of mind" I thought what if there was an actual seat... A defined place for the baby to sit that would be ideal... so I took my scissors and cut two leg holes into the fabric... I put Katy into it...and immediately felt a sensation that this was the best move for my carriers. With in a week my sister in law helped me create a prototype... and was wearing it publicly. I still received the same reactions until I pointed out the seat...and all of a sudden I was making sales. I changed up the wrapping techniques to simplify the wearing process...and fell in love with the concept.

Business started out gradually (keep in mind that up until this point I had NO business experience)...and within the first few months I had gotten the hang of making the bundleboo. (bundleboo-BTW came from the two words ..."wrap baby") out of my mother taught me how to sew just to make these at first it took me 6 hours to make 1 carrier. (Now 2 years takes me a little over 1 hour from start to finish...if I can fit it into my schedule between house work 3 kids and have Lucy in a Bundleboo now...nursing while I'm working on the sewing machine :) Anyway, after a few months it was suggested to me by many people that I secure this idea with a patent. WHAT? How do I do that? So I started researching the patent process online. I spent hours and hours and HOURS, trying to figure this all out. I made many phone calls to patent agents all over the US looking for advice. Finally the solution was...I needed to hire someone to help me. FYI, the average patent from start to finish can cost someone up to $15,000.00 ... we were barely making ends meet... at the time I was selling Mary Kay and I started nannying for a dear friend (now my business partner) there was no way we could ever afford to pay for a patent... and my Bundleboo sales... were barely helping my husband with the bills. Feeling an obligation to my family and to my heart... I started to write letters to 30 local patent attorneys telling my story... and asking for help. One angel responded back... Juan Marquez from ReedSmith in Fairfax scooped me up and agreed to do it at zero cost...including the patent and filing fees. WHOA!!! What a turn around...from almost feeling defeated.

2 years later, I have a full line of Bundleboo carriers and a US patent to my name. Whoohoo! We are so proud to have gotten this far and I believe that good things happen to good people. On a down note, the economy is taking a HUGE toll on the company right now... and we are praying for a break that gets us through this tough time. saint business partner is hanging tough and her family is investing more fiscally than I can into keeping the company alive. I believe in us... and I hope that others will as well. Support your WAHM businesses!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Katy-Ro Makeover!!!

We put the kids in bed tonite around 9:00 and at 10:00 Andy found Katy in my bathroom glamming it up...OMgoodness I about fell off the couch when I saw Andy carrying THIS down the stairs. Ahh...I haven't laughed that hard in such a long time...Of course not to her face...she's was a BEEEEAUTIFUL princess!!!

Magic Potion!?!?!

My mother-in-law was super sweet to send us a shipment of Omaha Steak foods for Thanks giving. The foam container came with about 3 lbs of unevaporated dry ice...which means science experiment time for the kids. Max and Katy were in awe of this stuff. The steaks and hams were frozen solid when it arrived...wish I could have said the same for my breast milk disaster. I should call Omaha steaks for tips if I should make another donation. :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"Lord please give me the strength to be a rock for my children...."

5:30AM...My 4 year old son comes running into my room and turns on my overhead light.

"Please turn out my light buddy you're going to wake up Lucy" "Mommy I pooped, can I please have some chocolate milk, circle cereals and a couch bed now??" "Max...honey its dark outside and everyone in the world is still sleeping you need to go back to bed." "But mommy I pooooooped wanna smell my butt?? "Ugh honey I don't want to smell your butt...why did you poop in your pullup?? "I dunno, can I have some chocolate milk, circle cereals and a couch bed pleeeeeease?"

This had been going on pretty much every morning for the last 2 years... I would wake up and go through the same routine day in and day out...Max's day was not quite right if he didn't wake me up with a poopy pullup and demand his sippy cup of chocolate milk, bowl of dry "mother's" peanut butter cereal and that I cover our cold $30 yard sale leather couches with blankets and pillows so that he could watch noggin like a 5:30 am. So, I'd get up every day...make some bad mommy comment about how I was tired of wiping smooshed poop off of his butt, snap at him to keep his voice down a few times while constructed a "couch bed" for the 2000th day in a row. I'd make sure the doors will all locked and I'd stumble cranky back to bed in hopes to get just 1 more hour of sleep.

This week was different, for the first time ever Max found his own way in the morning... took his clean, dry pullup off and put on fresh underwear... helped himself to the dry goods in the kitchen, set himself up downstairs and spoke a little softer. And I think..."Wait a second, what happened overnight to my baby boy???" Ironically, I don't know how to feel about this sudden change... on one hand I am praising the Lord that my day is no longer being launched with "I pooped mommy,wanna smell my butt?"...proud mama of a little boy leveling up in life. On the other hand I am feeling a little spot of emptiness that those days are gone...and perhaps I should have done those things for him with a lighter heart.

I have prayed "Lord please give me strength to be rock for my children, to be grateful for the things I may take for granted speak a little less harshly to your precious gifts and grant me the patience to listen more." In response the Lord has surround me with other fabulous christian mothers/women that simply know my heart. Who have unknowingly renewed my faith in Christ, given me the tools to parent the way that pleases him...So that I may have joy and fullness in my heart. I have heard read some stories this week on blogs written my mamas like you that have made me laugh out loud and outright sob...I want you to know that I appreciate everyone for your willingness to share so candidly your private lives...your outreach is invaluable. (hugs)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Great Kids Expo ~ Chantilly VA 2008

I wanted to post these for Drea who did the photography for our banner...I know the "B" in Bundleboo is really shows up much better in person :) Thanks Drea! Nice job!
We are still trying to get the hang of shows, displaying our carriers and organizing the booth. Moby was right around the corner and stole our The girl who reps for Moby in NOVA is super sweet... she seems to really enjoy her job and I love picking her market savvy brain :) We didn't do well at this show like we hoped... but I put out my home made "babylegs" $6.00 a pair... I called them "BooLees" legwarmers... and they were a huge hit :)
The traffic at the show was really really slow and we were right next to the front door... bad idea in the end I think we could have been better off somewhere in the middle. I think that Moby had a leg up simply because of price and my Moby friend kept putting her darn carriers on everyone... of course if you rip the darn baby Bjorn off of them and put a wrap in its place...they will be sold in an instant... why didn't I think of that?!?!?!?! UGH! I don't do well with direct sales... I try not to be in your face... ANY SUGGESTIONS FOR NEXT TIME????

Sneak Peek!!!!

Introducing a new breed of Bundleboo.... get the feel, look and quality of a "german" wrap carrier... at much more affordable prices. The great bonus is that these wraps are sooooooo soft right out of the packaging that you don't have to wait until they break in to really enjoy them!!!!!

What do you think I should name them?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Bundleboo SALE! ~ Review offer!

November Specials: Classic Bundleboo 3 Color Choices Wine, Natural and Navy Regular Price: $69.00
Now on Sale for $49.00

NEW Fabric! Signature Bundleboo - Chocolate Lollipop
Regular Price $89.00:
Now on Sale for: $69.00
We are doing a sale to help those who are interested in purchasing a Bundleboo but cannot afford one at full price (we understand that the economy sucks right now :). We are doing our very best to work prices down as low as we can...we hope that you will find that this helps you in making a decision.
Also, the new chocolate lollipop, Lime dot, Wine and Natural Bundleboo's feature the new wider and re-enforced seat...we have received great feedback from it.
If you are willing to do a review on the new Bundleboo we will offer you one Bundleboo at wholesale cost...that is 1/2 off the original price AND a 15% discount to your readers!!!!!!