Monday, December 28, 2015

The Story of Nothing Is Clean

Sometimes I look at my house and realize nothing is clean. Actually, this probably happens once a day. If not twice.

I used to be able to get everything done at once. At least to my comfort level. Dishes cleaned. Vaccumed. A bit of time for myself, for knitting. Laundry done and put away. And bedsheets changed, pillows rotated. Things felt in order. I like how it feels when things are put up where they belong.


This month I've been wondering what is wrong with me. Why do things have to feel like they are clean and organized? Why when the dishes are not done and the laundry is in a two day pileup and my baby is crying do I feel as if the world has ended?

Do other moms feel this way?

Many times when Brian is holding Reuben I will do the dishes. When they are done I will feel as if things are put right. A sense of calm will descend on me. I think to myself "well, at least now I've accomplished something today."


As if clothing and soothing and feeding a small baby with my body isn't "doing something". As if changing and tickling and loving Reuben isn't enough.

This must be a human thing.

Before baby I had a lot of time to waste. I had more time to clean, as well. Now sometimes it's like I'm juggling. The balls in the air are all chores, and the ball for free time never seems to come around. I think sometimes I'm drowning. But the day always comes in the morning and breakfast always needs to be made and dishes always need to be done again and

Life can be overwhelming at times.


We are in the middle of setting up Reuben a nursery, and my house is in a state of chaos it has not been in since we bought him home and all this started. I don't know why but the fact that our normally clean back splash looks like this has been a source of a few fights between me and my husband. It's his things, from a engineering project he started a few months ago as well as bread machine stuff and a few purchases he bought for another computer project and tools because we are dismantling a whole room and rotating house. It's just piled up and it is literally driving me crazy.

I want to clean it. He has asked me not to, several times, because he is in the midst of working on it. But it's been three months. I feel like it would only take me a half hour to put to rights. A half hour. Does my husband not have a half hour to dedicate to my sanity? Every day that I see it I remember that he still hasn't done it.

Today I finally wondered why it matters so much to me. Will having that back splash clean make my life better? Is it really worth it? Why does it make me panic to look at it? Why do I feel like things are falling apart because it isn't clean?

These are things I am pondering, tonight.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Ruffle Boot Cuffs

I made these cute ruffle boot cuffs just for fun. And to practice ruffles, because I have two nieces and they need ruffle hats and diaper covers. (next project!!)


So to make these boot cuffs you will need two types of worsted weight yarn. You will need 100 yards for the cuff, and about 50 yards for the ruffles. I used red and green for seasonal reasons, but whatever colors you want are great! I also used a 4.0mm crochet hook. All my crochet projects use US terms.

Gauge is 4 hdc per inch, when hdc is preformed in the continuous round. Finished cuff measures (taken flat) 4.5 inches by 5.75 inches, and fits a 8-9 inch ankle.

Pattern:

Chain 33, with main color yarn. Boot cuff worked from bottom up.

R1: skipping (sk) the first chain (ch) and half double crochet (hdc) 32 times, one in each stitch (st).

R2: join in the round by hdc into the first st. do not slip st. continue hdc around until piece measures 3.5 inches. Do one single crochet (sc) and then 2 slip stitches (sl st) Cut yarn.

R3: (with ruffle yarn color) starting in any stitch, pull up a loop and do a sc only in the front loop. Now *sc, ch 3* in each st around, only working into the front loops. Sl st into the first st, and cut yarn. I weave in ends after each row.

R4: (with main color yarn, and working in the back loops of the very top of round 2) yarn over twice on your hook, and do a chainless starting double crochet (see video) this counts as your first dc. Now dc into each st around in the back loop for 32 dc.

Repeat round 3-4 for as many ruffles as you want. Weave in all ends, and wear :)



Sunday, December 20, 2015

The Elephant in the Room

Imagine you struggle with drugs. You can't stop thinking about them, obsessing over them, and you have a terrible addiction. It's bad. After spiraling into a downward depression, you finally decide to seek help. It takes all the courage you can muster to talk to a woman in your church about your ongoing problem.

But after your tear-filled confession imagine your surprise as she tells you not to worry, that you must be mistaken. Of course you don't struggle with drugs! Of all the things to say! She pats you on the head and comments on how cute your baby is while you try frantically to explain that yes, you do have a problem and its eating away at your life and please, please you need help.

Her brow furrows. She repeats again that nothing is wrong, you are fine.

The conversation ends. You feel alone. You feel isolated. No one sees you. No one will help you.

This sounds crazy, right? No one would really do that.

But they do it to me every day.

Only my problem isn't drugs. My problem is my postpartum body. I am really really struggling. Yet when I tell people in person all I hear is "You are beautiful! You look great! Don't worry!" or "Look at how amazing your baby is! Wasn't it worth it? Don't worry about it, because you have a beautiful, healthy child."

First of all, if I tell you I am struggling with depression and anxiety daily over my 30 pound weight gain, and that I am having trouble functioning and getting out of bed sometimes---you tell me to get over it? You tell me that I am beautiful? So you just ignore my problem and instead try to tell me it's all in my head?

This leaves me not only confused, but not trusting my own feelings. You are telling me that the things I am dealing with are not real and are not of any value. I feel isolated, and alone. I came to you because I need help, not a pat on the back and a trite saying. I know I'm beautiful. I still want to lose 30 pounds. I don't feel ugly. I feel fat. And telling me I look great is not helping because I can feel the difference and see the difference in my own skin and my clothes and it makes me want to hide.

It's like you are trying to ignore the elephant in the room. No matter how many nice words you throw at it, it's kinda hard to mask. I mean, it's an elephant. My mom just last week commented on how much weight I'd gained and told me that even with it I still look awesome. This helped. She recognized my issue and then complimented me. We talked about it, and she offered tips to help as well as prayer. It was refreshing to hear someone agree with me for once. I gained weight. It's okay. She saw and addressed the elephant instead of trying to cover it up with nice sounding words.

The second thing I hear is even worse. A few people have instead told me how beautiful Reuben is and that I should not worry about my weight because at least he is healthy. And I am so glad Reuben is healthy. I make sure all his needs are met, and I love him to pieces. But this is not about him. This is about me. I don't blame Reuben for my weight. However, the answer is not to throw all my life into him. If I stare at my baby for hours and make him my world I'll still be 30 pounds (or more!) at the end of the day and back right where I started in terms of depression.

People who just tell me I look beautiful and I am fine make me want to eat a whole pizza.

Clearly this is still a uphill battle for me.

And yes I know people mean well when they tell me that I am still beautiful and not to worry. But it still hurts and makes me feel like a child being reprimanded for daring to mention that I am totally struggling with body image. Thank you for the lady in yesterday's post who told me to mourn. I felt that I finally found the word for what I am feeling.

And yes I know I am totally guilty of this too. I know I've told people who are struggling with body image "not to worry, they look great". I regret every single time!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Learning to Love my Body, Again

I'll be honest guys. The first three months after having a baby I would look at my body and cry. I would try not to look at it, not to think about it. I knew I was fat and ugly and pudgy and saggy everywhere, and it pissed me off. I worked SO HARD before getting pregnant. I was down 25 pounds, I could do a plank for almost three minutes and I was fitting in my size 8 pants again. I had never felt better.

Now I look like I am three months pregnant, I am wearing a size 14 and everything sags.

I am not here to tell you it is worth it. I am not here to tell you that, in the wake of my adorable little boy and his beautiful smile that everything is bliss and happy rainbows and that my stretch marks don't make me die a little inside every time I see them.

I also don't want to you think I am exaggerating, so here is a picture.


It took a lot to post this pictures. Also, my husband took it while holding a baby on my iPhone, so yeah, it isn't the best. But it's raw. And real. And I am almost crying looking at it.

I exercised all through my pregnancy. I gained a total of 50 pounds, and lost a whopping 30 pounds at birth. I birthed a 10 pound 6oz human. I didn't exercise for 6 weeks after having him. I started after my checkup determined to change my body. I exercised for 6 weeks and didn't notice a single thing changing (I am sure things did) and in a bout of depression I quit. I gained 12 pounds and my feelings about my body plummeted even further.  

Yesterday, 5 months postpartum, laying in bed I finally realized that I don't like my body. I am not comfortable in it. I really want it to change. I know I need to actively work towards that change. I feel so stuck, so trapped through. I thought nursing would help me lose weight. I thought I would have energy to feed myself veggies and not binge on pizza because I am starving and my baby is clingy and my husband is home late and I am just done with the day.

Today I realized it's okay not to like my body. It's okay to hate it. It's okay. My body is not who I am. I mean, physically it is. But beyond my tangible features, who God created me to be is so much more than my body.

Knowing this still does not help me not cry at night.

Knowing this still does not help me feel terrible when my clothes don't fit.

Knowing this still does not help when kind people ask me when I am due. (LITERALLY)

Knowing this does not help.

But maybe it is a start.

I really want to exercise. I want to try and change my body if I can. I want to actively work on shrinking my midsection and I want to lose weight. Mostly I want to feel like ME agian.

I know I am not my body. But I can't help but feel like I am.

Confessions of a new mom.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Silence

It is a rare moment to have time to myself. I've started staying up an hour after baby goes down, about every other day just to have time just to myself. My rule is no chores. No husband. Just an hour to do something fun.

It's seriously helped my stress level.

But you know what? I started this new rule last week, and today when the baby went down and as my husband watched Chuck (it's our new Netflix love) I realized I honestly didn't know what to do to with myself. It is so rare I have a moment without the baby. Last night he woke up and cried right when I put him down and I just went to bed, him in the crook of my arm, to nurse him to back to sleep. The night before that he didn't nod off until 11pm and I was to tired to stay up.


I've found that I can't expect free time. If I do, and I don't get it, it's stressful and makes me upset. I try not to expect it. I try, honestly, lately--to just survive. Most days are survival days.

At one of my mommy meetings (yes I am so old I go to mommy meetings, I can literally hear my teenage self laughing) someone said the first 7 years of raising a child require two types of days. Survival days was the second type she mentioned, where you are basically trying to make sure no one dies. Raising a baby is often like that. I make it through the day and Reuben didn't die and he is wearing clothes, so it was a good day even if the dishes are not done and my husband happens to pick up dinner while I cry in the shower. Other days are Get-Ahead days. Those are rare. You know, days where the baby actually sleeps and I vacuum. And the dishes get done AND maybe I get to film a video for my Youtube channel, about the only thing I even attempt to keep up with at this time in my life.

Anyway, that brings me back to my main point. An hour to myself. I decided this hour I would write a blog post. But then I had to think, what do I want to write? And I had a moment of panic realizing I a) don't know how to use my brain anymore and b) have no idea what I want to say because (a) and when do I have time to like, think about what I am going through anymore? As I said, most days are survival days. I survive, but I don't think. It's react and muscle memory.


I love being a mom. Reuben is awesome. Brian is awesome. I don't know who I am much besides a mommy right now. I have not worn a single piece of lingerie for my husband since I gave birth. When I have a tiny bit of free time during the day I choose, usually, to do the dishes instead of brush my hair. I usually brush my hair in the car, with Reuben in his car seat, on the way to an event.

You may think I am exaggerating. Let me tell you, I have a kid that does not nap. Ever. You complain that your adorable offspring only sleeps 30 min? Mine does not nap unless he is nursing (and then I of course am trapped sitting) or in the car. He used to nap when I baby-wore but he has even quit doing that, so I mostly wear an awake baby and try and do things sometimes, but he is heavy and I can't kneel/bend over and I can't back-wear yet, so no cooking (hot things) or dishes (sharp knives) or anything dangerous.

He really does not nap. I was worried but that is just some babies. He does sleep really well at night (a good 6 hours) so I'll take it, I suppose. I don't know any different. Maybe soon he will start napping. What is normal? He "naps" by nursing and sleeping about 3 times a day, for about 45 min each session. He wakes up when he pops off my boob even if I stay sitting down, and especially if I stand up and try to lay him down or move him. What can I say, he loves being attached to me.

I don't pictures on my DSLR anymore. Every pic I take is on my iPhone, rushed so I can eat or pick up Reuben but taken nevertheless so I can remember how small and cute and wonderful he is. I don't really wear dresses anymore. I used to wear a dress almost every day. How that has changed. Leggings, and a long sleeve tee that is easy to pull up to nurse are my go-to. I haven't sewn anything, although I am dying to make Rueben a pair of leggings. I have knit, but have no time to take pictures for this space, my blog. I really do miss this space. I read some old stuff I wrote while I was nursing and thought I was funny. I am still funny, when I remember that I have a brain. Hah.

I talk about my baby a lot. Seriously, it must be annoying, but I can't stop. I am one of those moms.

I still make videos, because it's easy, and I need something, at least, to do that is creative... 

And I just heard my baby wake up. 19 minutes. Better than yesterday. And I had more to say, but I suppose that, too, will wash away with whatever else I've forgotten to get done today.

Until next time. I don't even have time to check this for errors, not that I catch most of them anyway. But trying is nice.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

What I Wanted You to Say

Me: I'm fat. *cries dramatically*
Husband: You are not fat! You are beautiful!

What I wanted him to say: Your body has changed after pregnancy. I see that. You are still my wife and I love you and I think you are beautiful. It's okay.

Elder Lady at Church: Oh! Are you expecting again?
Me: Uh, no. I'm just, uh, fat. (yeah that is how I responded...)
Elder Lady at Church: ...

What I wanted her to say: Oh dear, I am an busybody old curmudgeon who needs to keep her opinions to herself. Here is $20.

Pre-Pregnancy Jeans: You are crazy if you think you can fit into me.
Me: ::tries on Jeans:: ::can't sit down, breathe or move:: ::is depressed::

What I wanted them to say: You've moved on, girl. To new and better things, but alas I am no longer the go-to item in your wardrobe. Buy some leggings and get rid of me so I don't sit in your closet for months reminding you of how much your thighs have expanded.


Baby Reuben: Iloveyou Ilove you ILOVE YOU omg I love you love love love mommy mommy mommy why aren't you holding me
Me: O_O

What I wished he would say: Oh dear, I see you didn't get much sleep because I kept you up. Here is $20.

The struggle is real. Also nothing is ever clean at the same time. I love being a mother. But can someone come hold my baby so I can finish the laundry?

(I may have had postpartum depression last month. Lets not talk about it, shall we?) 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

I'm not the same

Lately something has seemed off. I've felt an itch, an itch that I've tried for so long to ignore. I am not the same person. It might be turning 30, or it might be having a baby, or it might be three years of marriage or a myriad of other things, but I have finally accepted this fact.


I don't fully know myself anymore. I'm not talking about the idea that of course everything is always changing, or the truth that I am a person who will always be becoming (because that is life). I'm talking about something different. Like a switch that has been flipped, only I don't know where or what. I can only see the effects.

The past few weeks I have not felt like blogging. At all. I read my blog today with the sense of déjà vu unrelated to the fact that I did indeed write all these words. It feels like someone else wrote them. Someone I am not anymore. I relate to her in some foggy sense but I am no longer her. The past few weeks even thinking about my blog made me want to do something, anything else.

And that is not me. At least not who I thought I was. I mean, everyone needs breaks. But this does not feel like a break to me. Who knows? I mean, I am not going to try and quantify it, because I am still mucking it out.

But I finally faced the thing that has been bothering me so much this month.

I don't want to blog anymore, and that is okay. It is actually not really that. I do want to blog. Insomuch as I want to feel that feeling I used to feel. Like I remember when I used to dream about blog posts and get excited about putting up pictures and telling my life story, and I mourn the loss of that feeling but I can't make it come back. It's just gone, like my pre-pregnancy waist and I am left puzzling over the remains of whatever I have left.

A few months ago I started wearing makeup. And I like it. (Me! makeup!) And, yesterday I got a job. (A job! Me!) Stay at home wife forever me. It's not a out of the house job, through. I'll be a consultant for Arbonne. I'm excited. You sell arbonne in spa parties, not on the internet so don't worry, I won't spam you. I am not about that.

Six months ago I never would have thought about myself getting a job. But I am happy. I am looking forward to it.

Perhaps that is the next chapter.

Anyway, I'm sure I'll blog again. Just not right now. Who knows? If you want you can still follow me on YouTube here..because I am still in love with vlogging.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Cat Eared Boot Cuffs


I made these cute cat eared boot cuffs for halloween. I love them! I tried to crochet cat eyes too, but it just didn't work out. So just ears it is!

Gauge 3.5 hdc sts per inch, when working hdc in the round. Pattern written to fit a 13.5-14.5 inch calf. I used a 4mm crochet hook and worsted weight 100% wool yarn.

Using a 4mm crochet hook, chain 41 sts.

R1: Skip the first ch and hdc down the row (40 hdc)
R2: ch 1 and turn. hdc all sts (40 hdc)

Repeat round two until boot cuff measures 5 inches or as long as you want. At end of row, after it's as long as you wish, ch 1 and cut yarn. Sew up the leg warmer.

Ears: Start the first ear anywhere.

R1: ch 1. 1 sc, 3 sc in same st, 3 sc in same st, 1 sc (turn 4 sts into 8 sts)
R2: ch 1 and turn. sc all sts (8 sts)
R3: ch 1 and turn. 1 sc, sc 3 tog, sc 3 tog, 1 sc (turn 8 sts into 4 sts)
R4: ch 1 and turn. sc all sts (4 sts)
R5: ch 1 and turn. sc 2 tog, sc 2 tog (2 sts)
R6: ch 1 and turn. sc 2 tog. ch 1 (1 st)

Now count four sts from the end of this ear. In the 5th st from ear, work next ear (rounds 1-5 again), making sure there are 4 sts between 1st ear and second ear.

Weave in all ends and wear!



Monday, November 2, 2015

Q & A #3


I love doing these question and answer videos! In this one I took questions from twitter and Instagram. Enjoy!



If you have any more questions for me please leave them in the comment box below.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Kitty-Eared Baby Hat Tutorial

Make a cute kitty hat for your baby! This free crochet pattern has both a 0-3 month size and a 3-6 month size!


What you need:
  • 4.0mm crochet hook for 0-3 month size
  • 4.5mm crochet hook for 3-6 month size
  • four stitch markers 
  • a large button
  • 2 colors of worsted weight yarn (50 yards each, just to be safe)
  • yarn needle to weave in ends
  • cute baby to place hat on
Terms Used:
  • ch - chain
  • hdc- half double crochet
  • sl st- slip stitch
  • st- stitch
  • hdc2tog- half double crochet two together (decrease) 
Pattern:
Chain 51. Use the 4.0mm hook if making the 0-3 month size and the 4.5mm hook if making the 3-6 month size. 

R1: Skip the first ch, and hdc into the second ch and every ch down the row (50 sts) At the end of row one, measure your fabric. It should be 13-14 inches wide for the 0-3 month size and 15-16 wide inches for the 3-6 month size. If it's not, go up or down a hook size to meet gauge. 

R2: ch 1, and turn. 50 hdc. 

Repeat row two until your hat measures 4.5 inches long for the 0-3 month size and 5 inches long for the 3-6 month size. 

Now using the end of the yarn sew up two sizes to create a hat. 

Ears: Grab your stitch markers. (see video if confused for visual example) Lay hat flat so each ear is at a corner, and count four stitches from the left side. Place a stitch marker on this 4th stitch. Counting from the st next to the one you just placed the stitch marker on, count 19 stitches to the right. Place a st marker on this 19th stitch. Now turn hat over, and count 12 stitches from each stitch marker, using the previous st marker as stitch 1, and place st markers on that 12th stitch. So you should have a hat with 10 stitches between each marker--12 stitches if you could the stitches the marker is actually on. 

These 12 stitches on each side will make the ears.

(do following rows for each ear)

Ear R1: pull up a loop in the first st, the one with a st marker on it. Ch 1, do 12 hdc. Remove all st markers. (12 sts)

Ear R2: Ch 1, skip ch and first st. 8 hdc. Hdc2tog. (10 sts)

Ear R3: Ch 1, skip ch and first st. 6 hdc. Hdc2tog. (8 sts)

Ear R4: Ch 1, skip ch and first st.  4 hdc. Hdc2tog. (6 sts)

Ear R5: Ch 1, skip ch and first st.  2 hdc. Hdc2tog. (4 sts)

Ear R6: Ch 1, skip ch and first st.  Hdc2tog. (2 sts)

Ear R7: Ch 1, Hdc 2 tog (1 sts) 

(first ear only) Ch 1 and cut yarn.
(second ear only) On second ear, ch 13 for 0-3 month size and 16 for 3-6 month size

Now, hdc all the way around using your second color. Add a button and make a slip knot with your chain to attach! Like all my tutorials for babies, do not leave on baby unattended, as hat could get in the way of breathing.


Happy Crocheting! View this pattern on Ravelry here!

Some Thoughts On Motherhood

Almost daily I am shocked by the fact that I have a child. I catch myself looking at Reuben and wondering why he is still there, or realizing that he is still there and that he is mine. It's weird and wonderful. I am still not used to it but I could never dream of life without him.

It's also funny how many odd expectations I had about motherhood that turned out to be totally wrong. It's like I don't know myself, and on a daily basis I have to reevaluate who I am.


Bed sharing, for example. I waxed eloquent on how I couldn't wait to bed share. I googled safe bed sharing and talked to my husband about it and honestly eagerly awaited the moment I could sleep all night with my son tucked safely beside me. I laughed in people's faces when they told me my little one would die if I bed shared, and I rolled my eyes at the hospital pediatrician who said it was unsafe (my pediatrician is perfectly fine with it, not that her opinion on how I sleep with my son matters). I talked to friends who share their beds with their newborns and they told me about all the wonderful night breast feeding where their little one suckled and they got to sleep peacefully though the night.

I hate bed sharing. And not because it's scary. I mean, the first few times it was a little scary, but I'd done enough research to know how to do it safely and I was not concerned about that factor. I hate it because by the end of the day I am so worn out of having my baby touching me. I just want to sleep by myself with nothing touching me or wanting to nurse. Co-sleeping, on the other hand is so wonderful I could write eons and eons about it. The baby is next to me but in his own bassinet, close enough that he can smell me and I can hear when he cries but far enough away that I can get my own personal space bubble all nice and empty of everything but myself and my blanket. It's bliss.


Can we also talk about my taste buds? They have seriously changed. And it's weird. It's like I'm discovering food I've eaten my whole life for the first time. For one, I've hated popcorn my entire life. Entire. Life. Suddenly during pregnancy I craved popcorn with the undying love of a teenager. It's bad. I still, even 3 months postpartum, can't get enough of the stuff. I ask my husband to pop me a bag almost every night. Last night he said we were out and I almost cried. It was that bad.

I also like coffee. Let me repeat that. I like coffee. What is wrong with me? Who am I anymore? I have never ever ever liked coffee. But it tastes AMAZING. Please help. I remember how it used to taste, like bitter hot stuff. But now it tastes like the nectar of the gods and I even dream about drinking it. It started when a Muse (local coffee shop) employee gave me a coffee for free when I was out with two friends. I tried it and it was so good. I thought it was just that particular kind or something (it was an organic columbian dark roast) but then yesterday I tried Chick-fil-a coffee and it also tasted like the nectar of the gods. I felt like I was in the twilight zone.

Some things that I used to like I don't anymore. Like raisins. I just put raisins in my oatmeal and now I am wondering why on earth I would ever do that. It seriously is like I regenerated and have to figure out what in the world my new taste buds like. I know how the Doctor feels now every time he regenerates. Raisins are disgusting.

I hope this does not happen every time I procreate, or it's going to get old fast.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Let's Play Catch-Up

I've been knitting and crocheting a lot more than I thought I would, after baby. Mostly simple things, but I am about to make myself a pair of tardis mitts (from this pattern) to satisfy my complex knitting craving.


First off I finished the black cowl that I wanted to crochet for slow fashion october. The yarn is not locally sourced but it is 100% wool and I did hand-make it, and that satisfies me. I love it. It's very very warm and I will wear it a lot this winter, and in many winters to come. And true to it's nature it goes with literally everything. For the few things it does not go with...well, I've already ordered yarn in the color "wine" to make myself a burgundy one. As a bonus, it doubles as a breastfeeding cover as well.


I know I already blogged about these gloves, but I finally took more professional photos and I still love them. They are cozy and an easy crochet project for an evening.


I also made more hats. The black one is a Christmas gift, and the purple one was just a I-have-yarn-and-free-time project. Or more like nursing busywork, because I don't really get free time anymore with an infant. At least not like before.

I love knitting. I love crochet. I can't wait to make more things, all the days of my life, and to teach my children the love of fiber.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Feelings

It is a fact that my body is not the same as it was before pregnancy. This is a fact that I have to accept but honestly it bothers me almost every time I look in a mirror. I am not one of those people that thinks pregnancy destroys bodies. Pregnancy changes bodies, as does life. And everyone's body reacts differently. Mine had, according to my doctor, a rather extreme reaction to the 10 pound 6.1 oz human I expelled in July.


I have been trying to work hard to change my body. So far nothing really has changed, but it's only been 6 weeks that I have been exercising, and 13 weeks since I gave birth. Also, juggling working out and a small human and household chores and self care and all the other things I want to do is hard. Specifically since I either must put small human down or have my husband hold him while I exercise. Small human has opinions about being put down, and daddy is tired . Just like I am tired. So I don't get to it many times and, obviously, this makes me feel even better about myself. Not.


I try to make the best of it. And the thing is I don't feel ugly, so don't leave me a comment telling me I look great or beautiful or something, because I do feel pretty. I just also feel fat and lumpy. I was just so sure that breastfeeding would help me lose weight. I was so sure I'd have energy to exercise. I was also sure that I had the will to stop myself from eating 3 muffins in the middle of the night when up with Reuben.

I think the one thing I've learned through the whole pregnancy and birth and 4th trimester is that I really need to stop having expectations. Help.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Crochet Openwork Gloves

A viewer on my youtube channel actually gave me the idea for these fingerless mitts. I love them! They are crochet in the round with worsted weight yarn and a 4.0mm crochet hook.


You can view the video tutorial here and download the written PDF pattern here.


Monday, October 12, 2015

Favorites / Most Worn


My favorite piece of clothing has to be this pineapple sweater. I love it and wear it once a week! I am not sure why it makes me so happy, but it does.

My most worn clothing item is probably black leggings. I wear a pair of black leggings at least 5/7 days a week. They go with everything, and they keep me warm--I would call them my most functional clothing item. Usually I sleep in them too.

I don't wear this sweater with just leggings. I usually dress it up like this!


I am really enjoying slow fashion october so far!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Does the World Need More Love Letters?

I received this awesome stationary kit from blogging for books. I love stationary, but since baby I haven't had a lot of time to write letters, and I thought perhaps this would jump start some correspondence.


The stationary is cute but not overbearing, and I was surprised to find it came with awesome stickers to close up the envelopes. I have loved the few letters I have been able to send since having a baby! The paper is quite thin, but usable. I was expecting it to be a little thicker.

The prompts are all on one page, and I didn't really look at them as I had my own ideas for writing.

In short, this is just stationary. Buy if you need some to write some letters!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Why Capsule Wardrobes are Stupid

I think capsule wardrobes are stupid. I'm sorry, I do. They sound so dull and monochrome to me! I mean, I can see the use if you are traveling and have to fit a weeks worth of clothes in a carry-on, but other than that, no. No thank you. I love my variety and color and I need way more than two pairs of leggings because who has time to do laundry every other day and Reuben certainly isn't going to realize I only have one more pair of leggings and decide not to spit up all over me right before I am about to leave for church.


I also don't want to be known as "the lady who always wears ____" where ____ is the base of my capsule wardrobe. I mean, I know a girl who does this capsule thing. And she always wears the same two colors. And the same shirt every other Sunday. I want more options than that.

And I don't want to just jump on some minimalist bandwagon because it's hip or mainstream. I feel like 50% of the people who tote this capsule wardrobe nonsense do it because they think it sounds cool. And that definitely isn't me. I am the girl who wants to look like a rainbow one day but the next decides to wear a little black dress. (Wait who am I kidding I wear leggings and my kid's body fluids mostly, but hey, a girl can dream, right?) Regardless, I love having more than 30 pieces of clothing. I love it. And I feel absolutely no shame in that fact.


I think sometimes that people are afraid to have nice things. Or to let people know they enjoy having nice things, like it makes them look bad or something. Today's youth or millennials or whatever you want to call us always seem to want to one up each other in the suffering category. We talk about our gluten free diets or our paleo journeys and sneer over our Starbucks at each other, comparing our lives to see who is giving up the most, who is suffering the most. And it's not about that.

You know, I enjoy having a full closet to pick and choose from and that isn't going to change, and it does not have to. Owning more than five cardigans is not a shameful thing. What the whole minimalist movement is missing out on is the fact that having more than 10 sweaters in my closet is not an unpardonable sin. There is not some magic number of clothing items that summons Nirvana or will turn you into a zen goddess--and there is equally not a number that suddenly makes you a scrooge. 

And that's my thoughts on that.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Slow Fashion Goals

After reading a lot of the other slow fashion october goals--all I can think is they must not have babies. I don't mean this negatively in any way. But it is true that taking care of a small child does take up a majority of my time. It's blessed time, and I enjoy it with the kind of joy that only God can give, but it is time that I am not able to devote to fashion.


So yes, it's the honest truth that my goals would be a lot different if, say, I'd participated in slow fashion october last year. This year with Reuben I am lucky if I get 30 minutes to crochet in the evening while daddy holds baby. Usually daddy time is spent by me in the shower or washing dishes or eating food sans baby. There is a reason Reuben goes though so many outfits in a day, and yes it has to do with his ability to projectile milk--but it also has to do with the fact that I eat while nursing a lot (don't worry, not hot things) and thus my son also wears my food on occasion. It's a give and take relationship. More give from me at this point, but he's cute so I don't care.

So I have to think reasonably, because I know I don't have a lot of time. My slow fashion goals right now are to finish this black scarf I am crocheting. I've made a lot of colorful neckwear in my years as a fiber artist, before I finally realized I need something that goes with everything. Thus I'm making a chunky black wool scarf. It will serve the purpose of keeping me very warm and I'm sure I can wear it with 99% of my wardrobe.


I also want to pare down my closet more. I mean, I've done two big closet purges in the last two years. In the first one I got my two closets down to one. In the second big move I threw a lot out that I just don't wear anymore.  Now with a baby my style and my body has changed and I am once again overwhelmed with what I have. I don't have 30 minutes to put together an outfit anymore--I need to be quick and I can't spend a lot of time searching through all my tops. I need to pare down more for the simple reason that I can't see anything in there. I've enlisted a friend to come over and help, because I need someone who can be ruthless. I'm excited to see the results.

These goals may seem small and simple, but with a baby, a husband and a house to keep in order they are large to me! I am really looking forward to this October--I love setting and meeting objectives. There is something so satisfying in checking things off a list. Annnddd I might be letting my type A show.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Rules for Holding my Baby

I'm going to step up on my soap box and outline some rules that I think (snobbishly) that everyone should know before holding a baby. Specifically mine, but whatever.

  1. If you request to hold my newborn and the first thing you do is attempt to put your mouth on his skin, hair, or fingers I will go full helicopter mom on you. Be prepared to listen to a lecture if you even look like you are about to kiss my child. Because germs. And eww.
  2. Do Not Put You Hand, Fingers, or Other Object in my kids mouth. I legit slapped someones hand away from Reuben's mouth in his second week of life as they attempted to stick their FINGER in. It was an automatic, no-thoughts, panic slap. I even apologized afterwards. And then I lectured them.
  3. Don't scream when my baby spits up on you. Because he will cry from the loud noise that just happened right next to his ear and then you will feel bad. But I can (sort of) understand this one--I mean, it surprised me the first few times he decided that mommy needed to wear his body fluid. But I will laugh at you. And then I'll help you clean yourself. This is why I have an extra shirt in my diaper bag. 
  4. My kid makes funny faces when he poops. I will tell you this if he happens to do it around you. I am sorry. Actually I will mostly talk about my kid. I mean, he is a Big Deal. I'm sorry if I appear to have no life anymore. Just a fair warning--if you hold him, I'll probably start telling you cute poop stories about him.
  5. If you do not know me or my baby and I am in Krogers shopping, do not squeal about how cute he is and try to touch him because I will react like you are attempting to kidnap my child and then the wrath of God shall decend down upon you because how dare you
  6. If you come to my house and ring the doorbell I will secretly start planning on ways to interrupt you when you are sleeping, like sounding a loud alarm in your house during your nap time. 
  7. Don't be surprised if he cries and when you hand him back he stops crying right away. I am the amazing milk thing. Hear me roar I mean, milk. It's a softer sound but just as cool a superpower, trust me. Don't take it the wrong way, and don't think Reuben doesn't like you. He just likes me more. I squeezed him out of my vagina, so I win.


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Slow Fashion

I have always loved fashion. I'm not sure when it started, but I love shopping for clothes and I also love to check out what other women are wearing, even if it is not something I would particularly don. The idea of a well put together outfit is enthralling to me.


When I first heard of slow fashion, I thought it was kind of an elitist thing. I mean in order to afford handmade and fair trade clothing you need a serious amount of funds. Either that, or you are really poor and have no choice but to make your own clothes. I know now that slow fashion is much more-- from mending to knitting to just being very selective about your closet, the term is broad enough for most people. The only thing it isn't is fast fashion.

I don't sew many clothes, and I have not yet knit a sweater. I like to create my own accessories. From hats, to gloves, to hand-dyed scarves (that I'm wearing here!) I love to make my favorite outfits pop with something I've created.


Slow fashion first peeked my interest in high school, when I got tired of the cheap, fall-apart fashion that permeates the teen scene. I mean, it was so easy it took the fun out of it for me, not to mention that everyone was wearing it and I didn't want to be like everyone. I wanted to be unique. At this time my mom was the main provider for our little family and I thrifted most of what I wore. I loved Goodwill and the Salvation Army back then, and wearing "last years" fashion didn't bother me in the least. My style felt eclectic and I loved that most my clothes were preloved (I thrifted the shirt I am wearing in these pictures). The things people would throw away! They were my treasures, and I enjoyed searching for just the right piece to add to my teenage wardrobe. It was like a adventure, hunting through all the trash to find a gem, and I was hooked.


Now at 29 years old I don't shop at Goodwill anymore--mostly because I think I have a really complete closet and I don't need any excess. Anyway, this month I am so excited to participate in slow fashion October! Pictures brought to you by amazing baby naps.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Learn To Crochet

Before Reuben was born I created an entire beginners guide to crochet. These videos are for the person who does not know either knitting or crochet. If you know how to knit and want to crochet, I wrote a whole different guide that is more helpful, and uses common knitting terms.


So, you want to learn to crochet? Here is the video series on crochet that I did. Start with the first one and take it slow! You will need a crochet hook and worsted weight yarn for these videos. Feel free to leave a comment with any questions you may have.



Saturday, September 26, 2015

Hat Making


Fall is finally here but honestly I haven't had much time to notice. Reuben takes up most of my attention with his growing and as he hit two months recently hes certainly done a lot of it! He is 14 pounds and loving life.


I did manage to finish this hat for a friend of mine in our church small group. I love the color. I hope he likes it! I plan on making each person in my small group a wonderful knit or crochet gift. This one is for Jeremiah!


I also finished some squishy newborn hats to sell downtown. I love them and they are super fun and quick to crochet.


What have you guys been working on?

Thursday, September 24, 2015

After-baby Expectations

I had no idea I had so many unrealistic expectations wrapped around having a child. I've been struggling accepting fully what having a baby means--and also trying to accept joyfully, because bitterness breeds not only resentment, but makes me terribly unhappy as well. And since I'm stuck with myself I'd rather not be in a bad mood all the time.

In no particular order here are some of the expectations I harbor(ed). To be honest I am still struggling with many of these.


I thought naively that my husband would hold the baby the same amount that I hold him. In my head, we would share the responsibility 50/50. Now Brian does hold Reuben, and he loves to hold him. However the ratio is more like 15/85 or 10/90. I hold Reuben a lot. What really made me angry for quite awhile was when my husband would play a video game for an hour or do some other relaxing hobby while I was stuck on the couch with a baby. It took us talking (and some tears) to realize that Brian needs to relax still too. He worked all day, I held a baby all day. We used to come home and both relax together. Now he comes home and sometimes it's been a good day, and sometimes a baby threw up on me and cried all day and wouldn't let me put him down and I just want to throw Reuben at him and escape for an hour. But I can't always do that, because his day could have been equally good or bad. I am the primary caretaker for Reuben right now. It's true he will get older and my husband will take more responsibility but right now Reuben is two months old. And someone has to hold him. That someone is usually me, and yes it feels really unfair sometimes, but that is the way it is.

I thought my husband would start doing chores and helping out around the house. Actually, I need to phase that a different way, because he does help---but only if I ask. I hate asking. I want him to see a need and fill it without needing me to ask or remind him. For some reason it bothers me that I have to point out I need help with the dishes or it might be nice if he was to vaccume the carpet over near the couch since I live on the couch now and usually partake of meals while nursing a small human and there are crumbs everywhere. But Brian wasn't the kind of person who sees mess in the same way I do before we had a baby--so I don't know why I thought he would magically change afterwards.

This next thing is probably the biggest, hardest thing to get over. And I never even thought about it before.


It's physical touch. I am not a touchy feely person. Now there is a small human who basically needs to be in physical contact with me 24/7. And when he is not in contact with me--guess what. My husband is like, OMG! you aren't holding a baby! let me touch you! And I have found myself saying things like "can't I just have 5 minutes alone?!" and "please just can you wait for half a second" and also struggling with feeling overwhelmed by all the touching from Reuben. I love him, I am just used to more physical space. All the touching causes me quite a bit of anxiety, something I am not used to. I mean, my husband's love language is touch. But he worked mon-friday and I was home and had a comfortable amount of alone time, so his over-touchiness when he was home didn't bother me. And it's only over-touchiness to me, to my husband it is just the way he is trying to give and receive love. I feel like such a douche when I tell him to back off, but for my own sanity I have to sometimes.

I also feel like I never have enough time. Something always needs to get done, and there is always a small baby on me that is keeping me from getting it done. I struggled with this for weeks, until I realized I was thinking about it all wrong. I was thinking Reuben was keeping me from doing what I should be doing (cleaning the bathroom, making dinner, putting on clothes for the day, showering...) but I should be thinking of it differently. Reuben is the first priority, and everything else is secondary. When I started reordering my priorities it got a lot better. I try to see everything else as secondary and this helps me not see Reuben as a barrier or a block from me, say, taking a shower for the day. If I get a shower, I tell myself, it will be great. But if all I get done is holding a little baby and making sure he has the best day ever, I still did what I was supposed to do and the day is not a failure.

I promise that I love being a mom. It just is taking some adjustment! And now a little someone is waking from his nap and will need his diaper changed, so I better go. What are some expectations you had before baby?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Elf Baby Hat

I wanted to create a fun hat for my son Reuben, and an elf hat sounded perfect! They are so easy to make. This elf hat uses bulky yarn and a 5.5mm crochet hook. You need less than 100 yards to create this hat, and it will fit a 0-3 month old baby.


Stitchery
DC: double crochet
Magic loop: use the magic loop to start
ch: Chain
st(s): stitch(es)
sl st: slip stitch
HDC: half double crochet

Pattern:

Using the magic loop and a 5.5mm crochet hook, ch 2 and do 4 DC into the loop. Chains do not count as stitches in this pattern. slip stitch into the top of your first DC to join.

R2: ch 2. 4 dc, sl st in to top of first dc (4 sts)
R3: ch 2. 2 dc in first st (increase st) 3 dc, sl st (5 sts)
R4: ch 2. dc all sts. sl st
R5: ch 2. 2 dc in first st (increase st) 4 dc, sl st (6 sts)
R6: ch 2. dc all sts. sl st
R7: ch 2. 2 dc in first st (increase st) 5 dc, sl st (7 sts)
R8: ch 2. dc all sts. sl st
R9: ch 2. 2 dc in first st (increase st) 6 dc, sl st (8 sts)
R10: ch 2, dc all sts. sl st
R11: ch 2, 2 dc in first st (increase st) 7 dc, sl st (9 sts)
R12: ch 2, dc all sts. sl st
R13: ch 2, 2 dc in first st (increase st) 8 dc, sl st (10 sts)
R14: ch 2, dc all sts. sl st
R15: ch 2, 2 dc in each st all the way around, sl st (20 sts)
R16: ch 2.*2 dc in first st, 1 dc* repeat from * around, sl st (30 sts)
R17: ch 2. dc all sts, sl st.

Repeat round 17 four times. you should have a total of 5 rounds of just 30 dc, not counting R16.

R18: ch 1, hdc all sts. sl st, cut yarn and weave in all ends.

Make a poof for the top and place on your squish!


Check me out here on Raverly or here on Youtube!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

The Flu of Death

This week I fought what I will affectionately call the death flu. It started Thursday night with a mild sore throat and progressed quite rapidly into full blown flu. I had a temperature of 102 degrees and much of friday and Saturday is a hazy fog of my husband bringing me tea and helping me breastfeed.

I was terrified Reuben would get it. I was also completely incapable of taking care of him, so my husband held Reuben basically 24/7 when I wasn't feeding him and praying my antibodies would do their job and keep him safe. It was eye opening for both of us. It's Sunday now and I am in the post nasal drip part of my sickness, complete with with killer cough that kept me up this morning. My hands are so dry because I keep washing them before picking up the baby. But I feel a little less like death and I can stand up without feeling dizzy now, so I think I'm almost out of the woods.

Reuben has not caught this yet, but who knows if he will in the next few days? I hope not. I am sure he would have to be hospitalized because it was bad. And he's only two months old. My husband told me yesterday he kept taking his temperature just to make sure he wasn't getting a fever.

this happened yesterday while I was couch bound watching reruns of Dr Who
Last night Reuben slept for 7 hours, and it was amazing. I slept and I think the sleep really helped me recover. Probably what helped as well was the crock pot chicken noodle soup I made on Thursday when I started to feel ill. I still have a container of it in the fridge.

There is nothing more scary then being sick and being physically unable to hold your kid. I had a sore throat, chills, and a fever, and I was freezing as well. I couldn't take care of Reuben and without my husband I don't know what I would have done. It was a completely humbling experience, and probably just as eye-opening for my husband who had to figure out how to take care of a sick wife and juggle a baby at the same time.

When it was just us two, it was so much easier. I can't imagine what it would have been like if all three of us were sick at the same time. I feel like super mom in the fact that I can actually hold my kid today, although I have to be super careful not to sneeze or cough on him. I really don't want him to get sick.

How are you guys doing? May the death flu pass you by... I never knew having kids would be this much of an adventure.

Friday, September 11, 2015

The Shopping Mistake

Yesterday was terrible. I got nothing done, the baby cried, and at the end of the day I cried too.

So today I decided to go shopping. I mean, I was already planning on meeting a girl to buy a woven wrap at 1pm, so I would already be out. Perfect excuse to run by a store before I met her!

The day dawned perfectly. The baby slept in, so I was able to (gasp) eat by myself, shower by myself and even linger a bit over my wardrobe choices all without being cried on, spit up on, or otherwise jugging a small human. I was in great spirits.

post shopping nap with the new wrap
I nursed Rebuen a bit, thought about putting up some laundry, decided not to do any laundry, and headed out the door. Reuben slept all the way to the bank...that was closed for renovations. The only other bank is halfway across town--and he'd already been asleep for 20 minutes. But I had to withdraw money for my meet up, so I turned around and drove all the way there. When I got there, they had no drive though. What kind of bank doesn't have a drive through? I woke up the baby and went inside and retrieved my money. I put the now awake baby back in the car and thought about my shopping trip as I buckled Mr fuss pants into his car seat. Did I mention my car does not have air conditioning and he was already sweaty?

Well, I have the kind of baby that only cries in the car if its not moving. As long as the car is going somewhere, he's happy as a a fish in the sea. But as soon as I stop, it's like the world has ended. The store I wanted to go to was only 10 minutes away. And, it's right by Target--score! I could also pick up that hamper I'd been wanting to buy to put all the toys Reuben has accumulated but can't actually play with yet--because, you know, he's an infant. Seriously, so many toys.

And I'm almost there when I see a line of cars that is not moving. What? Is it a wreck? I am forced to slow to a crawl, coasting. But it's true--all the cars are stopped.

I spent the next 15 minutes in a dead stop with a screaming baby unable to pull over or go anywhere because of roadwork. Roadwork, people.

But I made it to the store. I nursed Reuben and calmed him down (He was fine) before I put him in my ring sling and grabbed my credit card and keys and headed into Maurices. Right as I walked in Reuben spit up all down my shirt and all over my (his?) sling.

I hid in a corner and tried to clean myself. I thought about leaving. But I'd come all this way darn it and I was going to find myself something cute to wear for fall. I had a credit card and a desire to clothe my postpartum body, and no one, not even a happy spitty baby was going to stop me.

So I shopped. I tried things on, twice, each time removing all my clothes and watching a cute baby. I found a few items I liked.

I went to pay.

My credit card was declined.

At that point I was ready to cry.

She tried it twice. It didn't work. Had my husband given me the wrong card? Nope, it had my name on it. It said it was good until a few years from now. What. The. Fudgecicle.

Reuben picked that point to start fussing. I calmly excused myself and asked her to hold my things until tomorrow. I hid in my car nursing my sweaty baby and called my credit card company. They tried to ask me a few questions to authenticate my identity. Of course they were questions I had no clue about because my husband set them up. I told them I would have to call them back after I called my husband.

Calling my husband when he is at work is an adventure in and of itself. He regularly is in meetings  and can't answer and I'm really only supposed to call if it's an emergency. Not being able to purchase two pairs of pants, a sweater and two long sleeve shirts is probably not on his radar for an emergency, but whatever. I was pissed off enough to not care. I called him.

He wasn't in a meeting and he gave me all the information I needed, and then I called my credit cart company back, proved (finally) that I was who I said I was--only to be told that card was old and I'd received a new one awhile ago. Where it is, I don't know. Probably in my husband's wallet, but I am not going to call him again, mostly because if it is in his wallet I am not going to go get it, and if it's not then who knows where it is. He told me it hadn't been activated yet even, so yeah.

I met the girl from facebook to buy my wrap (I used cash, but yeah, I didn't have my debit card or cash to pay for my clothes...that was why I'd taken the credit card!!) and then took myself home where I tore up the house searching for my lost card.

It's now 2 pm, and my sweaty baby is now asleep and also not sweaty anymore, because we are inside. I'm exhausted and tired and my morning is gone. I drug him everywhere today for apparently no reason and just thinking about it makes me want to cry all over again.

That was my morning. How was yours?

I'm still wearing his spit up. Isn't motherhood grand. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

I hated pregnancy, & that's okay.

You read all sorts of articles about accepting your birth. I've heard moms talk about how hard it is to come to terms with their c-section when they wanted a vaginal delivery, and many other moms struggle with many other types of birth that did not go as expected. And while these struggles are totally normal and true, I personally do not have issues with Reuben's birth. However, pregnancy? Can we talk about how much I battle within myself to accept my pregnancy?

First there is the guilt. Guilt over not enjoying something I wanted so badly--I mean, we tried for two years to get pregnant and I had 3 miscarriages. This feeling continued to eat away at me until I realized I really only wanted a baby. Pregnancy may be one of the many roadways to achieving this goal, but hating the path doesn't mean you love the finish line any less.


I am also annoyed by the constant reminders of my pregnancy. The crisscross of stretch marks on my belly. The utter devastation of my core ab muscles. I'll forget about it for a little while, until I take a shower or use the bathroom--and there it is. I can't escape, and it gives me night terrors. Literally. I wake up to nurse and realize that I'm not pregnant anymore and the chorus of angels around my bed sing hallelujah and my blood pressure lowers. I mean, everyone told me I would forget birth. And to a certain extent I have. But I can't forget for a second what it was like to be pregnant and how much I despised it. 

The thought of being pregnant again makes me want to run screaming in the opposite direction. Yet I want more kids. How do I merge these two emotions? Can I merge them?

It took me 8 weeks to realize that it is totally and completely okay to hate pregnancy. I mean, I really hated the whole thing. I hated the first six weeks because I was sure my baby was going to die. I hated the next 7 weeks because I couldn't leave my couch from morning sickness. I hated both food and pregnancy in the second trimester because nothing sounded (or smelled) good and my clothes didn't fit. I hated the third trimester because I looked like a whale, everything hurt, and I was hungry all the time. I hated going to the doctor. I gained 50 pounds, and you can imagine how I felt about that. Sex hurt, and I didn't know why. I continued to hate throughout the last four weeks because I was utterly convinced I was going to be pregnant forever.

My hate confused me. Wasn't I supposed to be glowing, or something? Shouldn't I be frolicking through Target buying baby clothes and pricing strollers? Instead I felt like a tired beached whale with cankles and an irresistible urge to scrub my refrigerator.

I don't know if any of you knew, but I suffered with depression during pregnancy. Postpartum depression? Nope, not a speck of that here. But depression with pregnancy? Yes. My doctor and a few friends say this can be normal. My emotions were crazy. I was a mess. I remember in the first part of pregnancy--the I'm-sick-all-the-time part where I lived on my couch and tried not to throw up--crying almost every day when my husband left for work until he returned. He was a welcome distraction from The Hate.

I've finally come to terms with it--hating pregnancy. At first I just tried to ignore it, like the elephant in the room. You know, everyone coos over the baby--but not one person has congratulated me on surviving 9 months of the hell that was pregnancy. But it's true. I survived, and I don't have to pretend I enjoyed one second with it. I hated being pregnant, and I am okay with it.

So what am I trying to say? Mostly that it is okay to feel however you need to feel about being pregnant and to take as long as you need to heal, emotionally and physically. I'm still coming to terms with those 9 months, and not only because I had a baby.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Reuben's Birth Story


The story of my son, who was born on July 17th at 5pm weighing a whopping 10 pounds 6.1 ounces. I love him to pieces.



Saturday, August 22, 2015

More Mitts

My mom requested a pair of mitts for fall, so I knit these the week before giving birth to Reuben. They arrived just in time for me to gift them to her before the lovely postpartum month descended upon me. I used handmade yarn from Fairy Tale Knits that I bought at a yarn fair. I love her yarn so much!


Then I made a pair of rainbow gloves for myself, using the same pattern and more Fairy Tale Knits yarn. I love these and they are so warm, bright, and awesome. I made these in the dreaded "postpartum" month, on and off while baby slept. It was nice to feel like I was doing something normal with my hands on my "down time".


Made anything lately? I am currently working on a hat. Baby naps are amazing things.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Happiness Mitts

I started designing these fingerless mitts when I was still struggling with infertility. And I finished them 4 weeks before giving birth to Reuben! I named them Happy Mitts, for obvious reasons they have the word "Happy" on them!

I love them. They serve as a reminder to always be content with the season of life I am in.


I knit happy mitts out of a alpaca/rayon blend yarn on 3.5mm knitting needles. I love the softness and the fun, kitchy pattern.


You can check out the free written pattern here, or view the video tutorial on my youtube channel.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Who am I now?

I feel that I've lost myself. That somewhere between the hospital and home I shed my solitude and found myself suddenly a mother. And I am still trying to figure out what that is exactly.

So far I know--

being a mother is:

living in a constant state of flux and change

being at the demand of a tiny human who does not care that I have not showered lately, and who can't understand that I might, perhaps, need a water break now and then.

needing my husband x100


living on a couch for most of the day. and most of the night.

being cut off from a lot of my independence, at least for now

being stuck at home-- I know this is just a season, but still. I am not used to being a homebody.

sleepy. I am so sleepy.

Missing my husband--I miss him so much. We can't just drop everything and go out to dinner. It's more like my husband opens the fridge and stares at me in horror because he realizes I'm holding a tiny human and once again he will probably have to cook. I've eaten too much burgar king.

(I'm going to start cooking this week)
(help)

I miss making videos. I miss knitting! I miss being able to have peace and quiet while I fold my laundry all in one sitting without having to stop to pick up a tiny distressed human.

Most of all I feel like I'm loosing myself, like I've already lost myself. I'm someone else now. Or, rather, my priorities and time have shifted drastically. Also, a person came out of my body. Can we please have a moment of silence for my uterus? I'm still in shock over birth. I'm still processing, but things won't slow down--Reuben will be four weeks next week and I still am sitting here thinking a human came out of me.

Lately I am re-learning how to do things. It's like puberty, but worse because instead of thinking the world revolves around me and looking forward to having boobs, I've suddenly realized my son is growing up and I can only watch helplessly.

A lot of being a mother is feeling quite helpless, at least right now. My husband refills my water. My son cries and I try to soothe him. I am so tired. I miss creating things.

But God is still good.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Nursery

Yesterday I cleaned the bathroom. I've never felt more accomplished in my life. I mean it, this had feels on the level of the day I graduated from college. I deserve a medal. A cash award? Then, since the baby was still sleeping I even took the trash outside and hosed down the very dirty trash can. I felt like a super hero.

However, yesterday I had a baby that decided he didn't want to sleep at night. Yay, me. This better not be a phase. Maybe just a one time thing. I pray.


We don't have a nursery per say. Yet. My husband is working on it, and since he wants to clear the spare room himself, I am waiting on him. So, we have babies clothes in the bedroom, as well as the cosleeper--and the changing table is in the living room. When little baby wakes up I go in the living room to change him and nurse him and then go back to bed (well, sometimes I fall asleep on the couch) so I don't wake up my husband. He has to wake up early to go to work and can't sleep all day like I can.


Today is my first day alone with baby. My mom went back to work yesterday and my husband went back last week (but he took thursday and friday off, so he only worked three days last week). Today I also have to manage cooking dinner as well! I am planning something easy with ground beef. Wish me luck, and hopefully little man will have a nap time around my cooking hour.


This week he has stopped screaming when I change his diaper and when I put clothes on him. It's a miracle! And now I need to go change his diaper. See you all later!

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