Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Epic Poopie

Be forewarned, this is not a good story for the faint of heart, and is not suitable for small children.  Parental discretion is advised.

This afternoon, as I like to do, I put Soren in his garage sale bouncy seat, set it to vibrate, and left him happily swatting at toys in the living room while I attempted to get some sewing done.

Soren has not pooped much in three days.  One or two little ones but nothing much.  As a result, I was pleased to hear that "end of the ketchup bottle" sound from the living room that signifies a deposit has been made.  As I expected as I peeked into the living room, Soren looked like he was feeling much better.  I left him for a minute or two while I finished ironing a seam, thinking how he often makes deposits in batches of two's and three's.  Michael came in, said hi to the baby and I, and went into the back room to do some work.

When I got around to unplugging the iron and checking on the baby, what a sight I did find!

Soren had definitely pooped.  The poop, having been disposed of with some great force, and being of considerable quantity, had been propelled, not just through the elastic legs of his diapers, but also up the back, and up the front of his diaper, coating his entire lower body in poop.  The quantity of poop was so considerable that the super-absorbent futuristic technology diaper he was wearing simply could not absorb it all, and so Soren found himself splashing around in his bouncy seat in about 2" of poopie puddle.

I arrived on the scene to discover that in the 60 seconds after Michael greeted our son (having missed the poop lake), Soren had in fact dipped his hands and cute little sock-covered feet into the mess as if it were finger paint.  Two month old Soren from there, proceeded to make cute little hand and foot poop prints on the seat, the blanket he was laying on, his onesie, and of course his face.

Soren sat, grinning, relieved and comfortable in his little throne, and was none too pleased with me when I decided it wouldn't do to let him stay in his present state.  Two baths and a scrubbing of his sink top bathtub later, I had a very angry infant on my hands, three dirty wash cloths, one filthy onesie, one poop saturated blanket, and of course, what was left of the diaper (The question is, how do you fold one so fargone?  I failed terribly.).

So that is the tale of the epic poopie.  I hope to never see one like it again.  I remain mildly traumatized.  I seriously considered photographing the boy in his mess, but decided it wouldn't be tasteful, knowing I wouldn't be able refrain from putting them on the internet.  Dear reader, be grateful.  Be very grateful.  It wasn't pretty.

Soren is sitting in my lap as I type this, and beginning to end, he has managed to urp on himself three times, and twice on me.  I need to go get a bib.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Soren's Second Monthday

I can't believe two months ago today little Soren joined us. I feel totally overwhelmed by the beautiful gift of his life. Time truly flies!

So, Soren, after two months of life on this earth, you have won my heart (and the hearts of, well, pretty much everyone). You're mastering the art of smiling. You make eye contact, your eyes twinkle, your ears perk up a quarter of an inch, and you break into a huge, toothless, open-mouthed grin.

You're getting so big! Every time I see you in someone else's arms, it occurs to me how huge you are! Clothes that were huge at the beginning of February, you are now stretching out of. Snaps stretch apart, and your narrow shoulders pop out of the top of short onesies. I've started putting you in even 6-9 months sized onesies because you're so long. And you've finally started to put a little fat on! Your chin has a fold, your thighs have some chub, and you're adorable.

Your eyes look like they're going to stay blue like mine, but you still look almost just like your dad in every way. I couldn't be more thrilled.

And oh boy, are you strong! Your dad walked at 9 months, and it looks like you might be on the move pretty soon, too. There's no rush, though! Take your time! You are already holding yourself up pretty well, pushing with your arms and legs. When you're mad or in pain, you make your whole body stiff as a board and yell. You're practically made of stone.

You have also started to reach for things. I catch you in your little play yard (from Ashley and Emily), batting at toys and even kicking them. Your vision has improved so much! I see you gazing at things near and far, studying them. Your biggest attraction is ceiling fans though. If you're fussy, sometimes all one has to do is reposition you so you can stare up at the spinning blades, and you stare at them in perfect contentment.

And you should know you have an amazing daddy! He changes your diapers and plays with you. Best of all, he gives you the sweetest cuddles and hugs. I love seeing him hold you close, wrapping his arms around you, and kissing you gently on the cheek. You are so very loved.

Your grandparents adore you, too. They cuddle you, play with you, console you, and adore you. I have never known a luckier baby than you. (Not to mention your sweet aunts and uncles!!! You might get to meet Aunt Hannah, Uncle James and your cousin Helen this next month!)

Most of all, this month, I love the way you stare back at me when I stare at you. You moved me to tears a few days ago. I looked at you, and you looked at me, and we just loved each other for a few minutes. You broke the gaze when you broke into the most precious, gleeful smile. And you know what it made me think of? How I hope you love Jesus that same way someday - that you would just enjoy his presence and ultimately, find pure joy in it.

So, here's to your second month on earth, and here's to the promise of your third. I know it's going to be epic, and am so grateful to God that I get to spend it with you and your awesome daddy.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Thoughts on Prayer

Recently I overheard a loved one paying a member of my family a compliment (if you think you know who it is, you don't.  Sorry, kids).  "He/she prays so beautifully", the friend commented.

This innocent anecdote struck a chord with me, and has resonated since then.  It's true, my family member does deliver eloquent, inspiring and genuine prayers.  Perhaps the comment stuck with me so much because I, quite simply, am not a particularly inspiring person when I pray.  I feel awkward praying aloud, I stumble over words, I get caught up in a train of thought or emotion and find myself speeding down the tracks of prayer, a runaway freight train.

And a lot of people feel this way.  Yes, you might be reading this, thinking to yourself, "Self, you also should not pray aloud.  You sound rediculous."

Therein lies the problem.

We've been trained, somehow, by someone (or many, many someones), that prayer is a performance.  In some cases, it's a marathon: "whoever prays the longest gets their prayer answered first."  In others, it's an art show: "whoever ueses the most flowery language gets an extra blessing."  But the way it makes me feel is, God must be truly disappointed when he hears me pray.  He must lament that I didn't spend more time studying my SAT vocabulary words.

The good news is, he doesn't care.  He's no more impressed with my small vocabulary than he is with the next person's expansive one.  He sees the heart, and cares infinitely more about that than a thesaurus-worthy performance.  He's not about performance at all, and truly, he is very difficult to impress.

So, if you're like me, think about this.  Imagine little Samuel (if you don't know anything about him, find the books in the Bible named for him), sitting in his room, hearing the voice of the Lord, and answering innocently "Here I am".  Remember that God wants to have a conversation with you (and yes, he reads minds, so don't worry about the whole speaking aloud thing).  Talk to him.  He just wants to be with you.  Err... me...

That being said, for a change, I'm going to spend some time NOT reading other people's sewing blogs and looking at pictures of other people's adorable children (yes, I've been stalking you), and talking to the Lord.  It's good to be heard.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Mascott - Corporate Onesies

Just like daddy!  Michael handed me a wad of work shirts and asked specifically for an InterLink Onesie.  It's awesome.  His little hat is from one of the shirt sleeves and says "Mocrosoft Certified Professional."

I am more than glad to make these for anyone who's interested.  My fee is $20, and I can make onesies that fit up to 3 months from a men's large polo, or up to 9 months from a shirt without buttons.  You provide the shirt!

I've been pretty busy lately, too...  Here's a skirt I made for one of Sarah Marie's coworker.  (I got paid to sew!  How crazy awesome is that?)  I'm making one for Michael's grandma, too...

And of course, I've been taking care of Soren, who is rocking my world.  I took this video today.  He blows me away with his sweetness.  Michael and I had to move him into his own room at seven weeks old.  He's not fussy, just talkative at night.  He lays for sometimes an hour at a time, staring at the ceiling, talking.  Not about anything in particular, just enjoying the sound of his own voice.  He now does it over a monitor that I can fall asleep to.  Oh, and I promise I'm not being neglectful by leaving my baby in nothing but a diaper.  I live in Southwest Florida, and it's hot hear.  And he's cute in just a diaper (not in a redneck way).

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The $3 Purse - and accoutrements

Shortly after Soren was born, we strapped on the Baby Bjorn and made the long trip down the block (1/2 mile) to St. John's  thrift store.  I planned to buy long sleeve button down shirts to enable my crippled style state of breastfeeding.  It isn't pretty.

The style gods smiled on me and withheld the desired menswear, but they did give me a truly hideous purse for $1 and the cutest mother and baby deer figurine.  Yeah.  Nevermind that.

I had this fabulous green canvas and leftover navy blue leaf print from Helen's wee dresses.  The pattern for the pacifier pouch was very easy and fun.  The iron on vinyl is easy to use and easy to find (ask at your fabric store's cutting counter).  I added a strap, which could just be a ribbon.

And the purse?  I declare proudly that I love upcycling.  I tore apart the $1 purse and recovered it, sewed it back together, and replaced the totally skeevy lining with one with custom pockets.  I am unsure of how to call it?  Option A: "Mom's Sanity Bag" with notebook and pen, ready at all times to remember all the things that occur to me while breastfeeding that, if they go unwritten, disappear into thin air.  Option B: "Mom's Boob Bag" equipped with cream, pads, and tissues.  Slightly racy, so I think I'll stick with Mom's sanity bag.

Final thoughts on sewing a purse?  The easiest way to do it is carefully disect a crappy beat up purse with a nice shape, then recover it and piece it back together.  It was easy and fun, and I was able to custom design pockets for the inside to suit a very special need (sanity or boobs?  Both are special, eh?).

And then there were sad little scraps left over at the end.  What to do with random scraps?  A nursing cape!  Et voila, c'est parfait, n'est ce pas?  I looked online, and for some reason all the nursing capes are in fact painter's tarps with a neck.  If I wanted a tarp, I'd go to Walmart and buy one.  No thanks.

So my little cape is perfect.  It has a v neck, and in the center front, I added a large box pleat, as well as a few additional pleats on each side.  Hello decent cape, goodbye tarp!  The best part, they all match, and they all fit in one decent little bag!

Urp Monster

Today, I proudly declare to you, that I, mommy for six weeks, have finally conquered.  I emerge victorious from the urp wars.

Soren Paul is an urp monster.  His little tummy is like the loaves and the fishes for milk.  Put in an ounce of milk, get three of ricotta for the next hour and a half.  Urping is his super power.

The enormous quantities of urp do not take away from his cuteness, but he's quickly going through warm clothes more quickly than I can wash them, and I became alarmed when I had to change not just onesies, but his pants.  When he urped clear accross small towels, onto friends and relatives clothing, and soaking all of his own clothes (pants, socks, you name it), it became clear that I was going to have to play dirty (or clean??).

So Mommy went to Target, and armed with six towels hand towels (less than $6), and a package of large flannel blankets ($9), I went to war with Soren's ups.  The fruit, you see below.

They are nowhere near as cute as MakingArtAgain's, but they are super absorbent, and can stand up to even the most supercharged projectile urpage.  From each of the three blankets, I got two burp cloths (err, towels?) and, what I have proudly dubbed, one "urp monster bib".  I now laugh condescendingly at weaker bibs.

Easy Directions?  You bet...

Prewash all fabrics.  Cut the binding off of the hand towels.  Fold flannel blankets in half, then cut along the fold.  Iron over binding edges, folding corners in and trimming away excess fabric.  Stitch close to binding edge.

For "urp monster bibs", take a standard bib, and trace onto a piece of 8 1/2 X 11" paper.  Enlarge shoulders (I added 3" to mine).  Cut out pattern, then trace onto wrong side of one piece of flannel using a wash-away sewing marker pen (Dritz sells a great one).  Pin two layers of flannel right sides together.  I used matching fabrics, and made three double sided bibs.  Stitch along the marking line, leaving a 3-4" opening t the bottom edge.

Cut out the bib leaving 1/2" seam allowance, then trim one layer down to 1/4".  On the inside neck seam allowances, clip seam allowances, then on the outside, clip small "v's", so layers don't wrinkle when the bib is turned right side out.  Turn the bib right side out, and use a pen to poke out the bib tips.

Iron carefully, then top stitch around the entire bib.  You will need snaps or velcro.  I recommend a Wal Mart size 15/16 snap plier set.  It's about $6, while the Dritz unit (same thing as the Wally World version) is almost $20.  Don't be scammed, it's the same thing.

I encourage you, if you haven't sewn anything (or haven't sewn in a long time, or had a bad experience), bibs are a great first project.  Proceed fearlessly, straight stitchers, into the land of the curved bib.  Go on, I dare you!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

This Sweet Moment

The sweetness of this moment...
Matched only by the promise of tomorrow.