Monthly Archives: February 2008


I’ve been too busy to post, but I found a great site where you upload your own pictures and caption them. Some of them are just hilarious.

Of course, I couldn’t resist capping this one of Ethan from this past summer.


I’ve been sick for the past week, started coming down with some sinus thing last Friday and whammo Saturday I spent the entire day either in bed or on the couch. So sick, in fact, that I didn’t even pick up my knitting for three days. The last time I was so sick I couldn’t get up was ten years ago when I had a major bout of bronchitis. Lack of sleep, lowered immune system conspired against me, and I was down for the count. I feel somewhat recovered, although Ethan is still killing us by getting up several times a night. We were up six times last night between him and the baby. No wonder it’s taken me a week to recover from this!

Fortunately, I seem to be the only one felled by this disaster cold, which is a good thing.

It’s so gray and dull here, I’m begging my primroses to stay alive just to have some color in the house. In fact, I caved and jumped on the Yarn Harlot bandwagon — I ordered Rabbitch’s Revenge sock yarn yesterday and I’m gonna make me a pair of nice, bright socks. I needs me some color.

In other knitting news, the Irish Hiking Scarf is coming along nicely (I think I’ve finally memorized the pattern properly, so that I can knit in the store without looking) and George’s boot socks have about 2.5 inches of the leg done. The gray and blue isn’t as blah as I thought it would be. The Knit Picks Wool of the Andes turned out to be quite nice to work with for a reasonably-priced wool, it doesn’t split, even with the sharp Knit Picks DPNs.

Grocery store is calling… joy.

There’s Something to be Said for Instinct

Aha! I found this, and my freaking out has lessened even more.

Did you know that the CDC charts that just about every U.S. pediatrician uses does not take into consideration whether a baby is formula fed or breastfed? Since breastfed babies tend to gain less between 3-11 months, they usually fall to the lower end of the spectrum — all of our children have.

If you consider growth charts of only breastfed babies, Stella is on the small side, but still charts in the 5th percentile. So I guess I’m not so freaked out, although I still plan on implementing all of the changes so we have a nice, squishy baby.

Climbing Down Off the Ledge

I’m not freaking out so much about the nursing. I’ve come down with a pretty craptastic cold, all the more excuse to stay in, do Zicam and JuicePlus, and nurse constantly.

After some research, good advice from my online group and chatting with a local La Leche League leader, I’ve decided on the following plan of attack.

1. Increase my intake of Omega 3s (fish oil)
2. Eat more good fish (easy, since everything is on sale during Lent)
3. Increase my water
4. Drink more Mother’s Milk Tea
5. Lots of good fats — olive oil, avocado, eggs, real butter
6. Nurse as much as possible for as often as possible

I’m going to call the pediatrician’s office to see if I can take her in and weigh her in two weeks, just to see if there’s any change. If not, then we’ll reevaluate.

The LLL leader said something I hadn’t thought of; around five months, babies really begin to notice their surroundings. If she’s distracted by something (her brothers, my knitting) then she unlatches and I think she’s done, when she’s really just looking around.

Somebody’s awake — time to nurse!

It Gets Better

Today was George’s 4-year pediatric visit and Stella’s 5-month visit. George is healthy as a horse, small for his stature but well-proportioned, 20/20 vision and excellent (if selective) hearing.

Stella, on the other hand, has only gained one pound since her three-month visit. She’s five months and 11 lbs., so she has officially dropped off the low-end of the CDC growth charts. Our ped suggested that we start supplementing breastfeeding with a little rice cereal and breastmilk twice a day for a couple of weeks.

Other than her lack of weight gain, she appears to be healthy and progressing normally. She is definitely getting teeth, and the doctor thinks they’ll make their grisly appearance within a few weeks’ time. Her ‘tourniquet toe’ is healing well, and he doesn’t think she’ll suffer any long-term adverse affects.

I’m trying to weigh the good with the bad (sorry for the unintended pun) but I seem to be freaking out slightly about this weight thing. I’ve prided myself on being a balanced, logical person but this has thrown me for a loop. The boys were both smaller in stature, and since they were proportionate I was never too concerned, since they ate well and seemed to have high metabolisms.

Although I’m still nursing on-demand round-the-clock, I think I’m going to have to make a concerted effort to sit and nurse more, for longer periods, with Stella. I really don’t want to introduce solids yet, but what’s best for baby is what must prevail.


So I was giving Stella a bath yesterday morning, and when I took off her socks, I noticed that one of her toes looked very red compared to the others.

Upon closer examination, I saw that she had one of my hairs wrapped tightly around the toe. I removed the hair, but her toe was still red and swollen. I started to freak out a bit when her toe was still red at bedtime, and found out that this is called a hair tourniquet. In rare cases, babies lose toes or other digits.

I never experienced this with either of the boys, I had no idea. And she wasn’t fussy, so I don’t know if it looked worse than it felt or what.

Suffice it to say I should be changing her socks more often.

It looks much better this morning, her second toe looks like it has an extra knuckle line, but that’s it.

That’s Where My Brains Are

When my sister and I were little, we often bathed together. One day during our bath, I poked her in the backside and pondered, “I wonder what that hole is for?” M. replied, “That’s where my brains are!”

Often I feel as if my brains have been sucked into a black hole, the nether regions of semi-consciousness. I think it’s a combination of parenthood and the lack of sleep that has plagued us for the last four years. The last time that I slept more than 4 hours without being woken up was about a month before Stella was born — both boys miraculously slept through the night, and the aches and pains and frequent urination that is part of late pregnancy did not wake me.

For those of you a little fuzzy on the math, it’s been almost six months since we’ve had a solid, four-hour stretch of sleep. Which leads me to the purpose of this post.

We go through steel-cut oats like you wouldn’t believe. We have it for breakfast almost daily, which means I cook roughly two pounds a week. Bob’s Red Mill is not exactly cheap — $4.99 a lb. for the organic steel-cut oats, as opposed to $3.49 a lb. for the regular steel-cut oats. I was lamenting to one of my online groups about the high cost of grain, and someone suggested, “Why don’t you see if it’s cheaper to buy bulk?”

Oh. Well. Color me brain-dead.

Nature’s Bin in Lakewood sells a 25-lb. bag of organic steel-cut oats for $21. Which translates to $.84 a lb vs. $4.99 a lb. I already buy all of our organic milk from Trader Joe’s ($5.86 a gallon vs. $6.98 from Giant Eagle). I usually go once a month and freeze it, along with bread from the Pepperidge Farm outlet store.

So now we are looking at whether or not we need to invest in either a Costco or Sam’s Club membership, and whether the membership cost will off-set our savings, especially since we try to eat as much organic food as possible and Sam’s doesn’t carry a whole lot of organics. Not to mention the cost of grass-fed beef and free range poultry.

Maybe we’ll just cowshare and split a cow with someone. It’s bound to be cheaper, I would think.