Monday, June 28, 2010

If I could write a Letter To Me...

And send it back in time to myself....

This Music Monday is in tribute to Raising Madison's blog hop, a letter to myself

Dear 7 year old me...
Enjoy your carefree youth, never stop swinging on the monkey bars or doing backflips off the swings (even though the teacher's aids constantly yell at you for that one). Have fun playing on the "spider" and spend countless hours at the park living in a world of imagination and forts, Harriet the Spy, and anything else you can dream of. This is all you need to worry about right now little girl. Home life may be a little rocky, living between two households will never get easier but you'll manage. Try not to hate your brother so much for all of the days of torturing he puts you through, you will be best friends one day believe it or not. Be a good friend, one of the amazing girls you'll meet this year will be the Maid of Honor on your wedding day...

Dear 13 year old me...
Who do you think you are honey?? You don't have to try so hard for people to like you, I wish you could get that one through your head... You'll meet some wild friends this year and get into more trouble than you (or your parents) could ever imagine. Ease up on the partying and drinking and troublemaking, you have a million more years for that... But don't change everything, these next years will shape the person you become. For the love of god could you pick out a more attractive tattoo than the one I'm left with today... guess not... lesson learned.

Dear 15 year old me...
I told you these next few years would shape your life... and sorry hun, they're not over yet. You're all twitterpated in love these days with a very charming guy... too charming... Enjoy it but learn from it, put your guard up higher than you think you should. When he breaks your heart this first time MOVE ON!! Did you hear me?? Do NOT waste four years of your life being a convenience for him, being at his beckon call. But you never did listen to anyone did you... so you won't listen to me. So let me tell you that he will bring you the best and worst times you've ever experienced in life but you will live to see another day. You'll get hurt, BAD, in cheerleading, but get used to it... it comes with the territory. When you break your leg, stop trying to be wonder woman and let people help you, you will fall down the stairs if you keep trying to crutch up and down them.

Dear 16 year old me...
Slow down in the car, you can't go unscathed forever. Keep blasting your music, even after your car stereo gets stollen because music fuels and recharges you and always will. Enjoy every single day of life with your best friend, you two really should pursue getting a camera crew to follow you around, you could be millionaires today if you do, just sayin. Be a little less of a pothead and a little more of a good student, because believe it or not one day you won't think it's that cool anymore. Give yourself a bit of an attitude check, yes you know you are awesome in all ways, but a little modesty and humbleness could go a long way for you. Keep up with the tumbling, you WILL nail that roundoff back handspring, and with a little more effort even a back tuck! And refrain from decking your coach when she drops you giving you concussion #3, it's just frowned upon.

Dear 17 year old me...
I tried to tell you to move on after he broke your heart the first time... what time are we on now...four?? He is not worth the heartache, and this will be the worst you experience. Stop beating yourself up, stop thinking if you were "prettier" "funnier" "taller" he would be different, give it a few years and you'll see. Do not chase him to Colorado Springs for college because life is about to throw you a twist and you'll be moving right back. Enjoy these last times without much responsibility, live your life to the fullest, cherish your friendships, and dream big. You'll learn a lot about your family this year, you'll realize that people are human and have flaws and you'll learn that you have the ability to shape your destiny. Try to remember that life has a plan for you even though you think you're in control. Oh yea and when you hear every vertebrae crack during that double full down in cheerleading GO TO THE DOCTOR, it's not a pulled muscle, you broke your NECK! And this will cause you years of pain if you don't rehab it.

Dear 18 year old me...
That psychic was right wasn't she! This new unexpected man you've found is NOT too good to be true, treat him well and don't be afraid to fall in love... fall HARD... he will get down on his knee and ask you to marry him someday but I don't want to get ahead of myself. You will learn so much about yourself these next few years, you will learn to trust again and realize that not all men are there to take advantage of you, your self confidence will come back, you will turn over a new leaf. You have a completely different outlook on life these days, all grown up some will say but you feel great about it. You'll get a great job that you'll keep until you finish nursing school and the relationships you build there will last a lifetime.

Dear 20 year old me...
The day you've dreamed of all your life is on the horizon... and here he is in front of you on one knee. You'll finally feel what it means for your heart to leap out of your chest. Planning the wedding will be the most fun you've ever had, paying for it is another story! You find out who your true friends are the next two years, you lose a lot but you gain a lot in nursing school. Don't beat yourself up over these relationships, and don't worry about the people in your past... there's a reason they didn't make it to your future. Remember that. You'll start your own business this year and fear not, it WILL succeed! You will be amazed at how well you do. Stop procrastinating on the taxes... that will come back to bite you in the butt!

Dear 22 year old me...
That magical day has arrived and it will go off without a hitch, you have over planned it and beat it to death so you should expect nothing less. And stop obsessing it will NOT rain. You will cry more than you thought possible, your heart will overflow with joy, your dress will be perfect, you won't mess up your vows, and the dinner will be amazing. You'll see the most amazing side of your father that you've ever witnessed and this mental image will stay with you forever. You will have a greater appreciation for your mother and will be closer to your brother than ever before. Pride is what you will feel this year, extreme pride. You will also experience the most hopeless and helpless feeling you've ever had. Keep faith that there is a plan for you and your beautiful baby IS coming to you he's just taking longer than you planned. You are not infertile and you CAN get pregnant. You and your husband will grow immensly close during this struggle to build a family and you'll learn once again that you are not invinceable.

Dear 23 year old me...
Your first pregnant birthday... how does it feel? I told you your baby would be on the way soon. You will be the most beautiful pregnant lady, you won't look like jabba the hut. Don't let your mom talk you into getting such huge maternity clothes, you will never be big enough for them. Stop and enjoy these 9 months they will go by faster than you could imagine and you'll be missing it so much. Your baby will be perfectly healthy so don't worry too much when they find his growth issues. And you WILL survive labor so don't freak out too much about induction, yes the contractions will suck BAD, no your epidural will NOT work, yes you will get an episiotomy but guess what you'll make it through just fine. Oh yea and don't worry about starving during labor, you will have no desire for food. Enjoy the times with just you and your hubby and your beautiful pregnant belly life is about to change big time... for the better...

Dear 24 year old me...
You will be a better mother than you thought you would. You will survive those "newborn" days just fine, and that sleep deprivation you were so worried about will not be as bad as you thought it would be. Don't stress so much about breastfeeding, it just isn't meant to be this time around. And DONT take those milk supply meds, the postpartum depression isn't worth it but you'll come out of that just fine too. You will feel very complete looking at your beautiful son, you were meant to be a mother and you are really doing an amazing job. You WILL get the garden planted this year and you'll follow through on your goal to make your own baby food. Life will be challenging this year but HL will make everything you do and struggle for worth it. You will fall deeper in love with your husband and realize how much of a team you are and how much you need him, your realtionship will see trials but you will grow so much stronger for them. And that baby weight will come off just fine but you will finally have to start maintaining your weight and dare I say working out consistently...Welcome to life my dear... remember again to have faith that life has a plan for you and go with the flow rather than fighting the current.

You'll make it through this and you'll see...
You're still around to write this letter to me...
Read more!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Good

Just a quick note, some more good homemade baby food recipes for you all!

Yam It Up
2 medium yams (real yams can sometimes be found at natural food stores, can substitute sweet potatoes)
5 nectarines

Cut, steamed, and pureed!

Melon Ball
1/2 of a cantalope
1/2 of a honeydew
2 bananas

Cut all into chunks, steam, puree, and add oatmeal to the desired consistency. That's it!
HL loved this one and it couldn't have anything to do with the sweetness right??? HA! Yes, this one is super sweet, but it's all fruit so I guess that's ok right?? The bananas tone the melons down a little bit and the oatmeal helps too so overall it's a great blend. The melons are also really watery so that's why I added the oatmeal and banana, to give it a better consistency.

Garden Blend
2 med/lg tomatoes
3 med. carrots
1 green bell pepper

Seed tomatoes and pepper, cut, steam, and puree. Can add a touch of basil or garlic for more flavor variety! Next time I may add squash, potato, or green beans to this one.

Happy cooking!
Read more!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Giveaway: Wanchai Ferry Asian Dinners

Open until June 28.
I have a YUMMY giveaway for you folks!! I had the pleasure of trying the Wanchai Ferry frozen entrees and I give it a major thumbs up. I usually have the fridge stocked with easy to make dinner stuff for the nights that I have no desire to cook anything more complex than ramen. I'm a big fan of stir fry meals and skillet meals, you pop it on the stove for about 15 minutes and voila yummy dinner ready to eat.

Wanchai Ferry frozen entrĂ©es are perfect to have on hand for those nights you’re in the mood for Asian cuisine, but would rather enjoy it with a relaxing night in. Available in the freezer section of your local grocery store, Wanchai Ferry frozen entrĂ©es come complete with everything you need to make a restaurant quality meal in the comfort of your own home.

I tried their newest flavor, Beef & Broccoli and it was great! Beef & Broccoli, is the first beef dish in their line of great-tasting, complete Chinese meals for two. Ready to serve in only 14 minutes, Wanchai Ferry Beef & Broccoli comes with tender beef strips, and an assortment of Asian-style vegetables, including broccoli florets, red peppers and water chestnuts. It even includes rice and a rich brown sauce accented with soy and garlic for an authentic flavor experience.

They've got a lot of great flavors available like Spicy Garlic Chicken, Shrimp Lo Mein, Orange Chicken (this is making me hungry again!) Check out their website so you can see for yourself. And they've got a coupon for $1.60 off for all of you couponing mommies out there (someone email me your secrets because I highly fail in the coupon department)

So you want some right?! Of course so here's how to enter

Head over to Wanchai's website and tell me which flavor you like best (they have pretty pictures of them and everything)

Extra Entries:
Follow my blog or tell me you already are (1 entry)
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Tweet about this giveaway (1 entry per tweet per day)

I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. The information, prize pack, and giveaway have all been provided by Wanchai Ferry through MyBlogSpark. To see my full FTC disclosure please visit the Disclosure page. Read more!

Giveaway: Plum Organics Baby Food

Open until June 28
Another good one from Eco-friendly Baby Products- Eco Mom. Yay for good baby food!! I was so excited to try the Plum Organics baby food sampler, not sure who was more excited, me or the babe?? I have to say I was a big fan of the Plum Organics line, they had some great combos that HL loved of course. And I like their packaging, the little pouch as opposed to a jar, very diaper bag friendly. I would say HL's favorite was a toss up between Strawberry Mish Mash and the Mangoes... he loved them equally.

I also loved the apple carrot Fiddlesticks (what an adorable name) these are basically little cracker type sticks that they can suck and chew on. My only complaint is that they pretty much fall apart after a couple slobbers and you are left with apple carrot goodness ALLL over the place. This stuff is like glue and it took a good scrubbing to get off of his hands and face. Not that he was complaining... he loved the things... much more baby friendly than mommy friendly!

Plum and Revolution offer a wide variety of products from the highchair to the lunchbox so be sure to check out everything they have to offer!

So the folks over at Eco Mom are being so generouss and offering one of you lucky peeps $20 worth of Plum Organics or Revolution Baby Food! And if you don't end up winning be sure to head over and use this promo code for 15% off! Promo code: SBBL356

And a side note, you can get a 15% discount and free shipping on EVERY order  you make at Eco Mom by signing up for the ECO PASS, which is a yearly membership.

How to Enter:

Head to EcoMom and tell me which Plum food sounds the best

Extra Entries
Follow EcoMom on Twitter (1 entry)
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Tweet about this giveaway (1 entry per tweet per day)

I was not compensated for reviewing this product, to view my full disclosure please visit the Disclosure page. Read more!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Something borrowed.... something blue...

2 years ago today I walked down the aisle to promise the man of my dreams an eternity of my love....

And these have been the best 2 years of my life....

I can't wait for a million more!

Happy Anniversary to the love of my life Read more!

Blogmania Sponsor: Shock N Roll hysterical silly tees

One of my many days stumbling around Etsy landed me at Shock N Roll, I left their shop laughing almost so hard that I wanted to cry. They've got tons of HILARIOUS tees for the adults in the household but they've also got some rad baby goods and tees.

SEE! I told you, hilarious! And this is only a couple of their hundreds of items! So if you're searching for some cute romp-around clothes or a great gift go check out Shock N Roll, if nothing else go there for a laugh!

Tell them you found them through Blogmania!

Read more!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

And his first word was....

Ladies and gents, we have a talker!!! Can I get a drumroll please.... there have been many bets placed on this achievement and I would like to tell everyone proudly that I have won the bets!!

HL's first word was...


:::::eeeeeeeeeee::::::: It is so cute and I was so excited to hear him say it finally. He hasn't been able to make "m" sounds yet until last week when he started smacking his lips together like he was giving kisses. That was his new thing last week :::smack smack smack:::: so after his swim lessons yesterday I bent down to him and said "Mama" like I always do and the little stinker goes "MaMA"!!!! The hubbs looked over at me and said NO WAY did he just do that and we both laughed.

Of course I had to make sure it wasn't a fluke so once again I coaxed him, Mama, and he just went to town... "mama mama mom mom mom mama mammom" I'm telling you AH-DOR-AH-BUL! Now he doesn't quite grasp what he's saying, I'm pretty sure he has no idea who or what Mama is but he says it and repeats you when you say it..... so it's going in the baby book!

He was so proud of himself that he continued to babble on ALL day long "mama mama mom mom mom" the entire drive up to Vail and back. And today we're moving on to "Bah's" so maybe 'ball' is next but I am really trying to steer him to "dada" for my poor hubbs sake. Read more!

We've been Go-Go-Going...

The past weeks have been so busy I don't even remember what it was like to have "nothing to do" which is not a good thing because now I find myself constantly running around and go go going when I really don't have anything relevant to do and could just sit my butt down and relax. My body is just used to this now and I haven't decided whether it's a good thing or a bad thing?? I mean it makes me more productive I guess... but a person can't possibly run around like a chicken with it's head cut off all the time without crashing right??

I have been doing so many things and contemplating so many things that have a big effect on my/our future. First has been my strange desire to get back into school (what in the HELL is wrong with me) and not just any school... I've, no joke, been very seriously considering starting medical school and going to become a doctor. I know right? IN---sane... but I have, I have been taking practice MCAT tests for weeks now. I've debated about every route I could take, the fastest way to get done, which specialty I would choose, etc. And then my brain goes... HEY... yea... remember me.... you have a BABY to take care of and the hopes of a few a more, when the heck are you going to run off and become a doctor??

Hmmpf... true... can't deny that. And then I remember the plan that I laid out for myself which somehow gets very foggy in the midst of my everyday chaos. The plan was to wait until all of the kids are in kindergarten and THEN go back to school. Feel free to remind me of this plan when I relapse and start filling out med school apps mmkay.

Next up are some business ventures... I guess 2 isn't enough... and I will say that this is the eternal downfall of an entrepreneur. You can never stop yourself from moving on to the next idea, the next venture, the next paycheck. When you live as an entrepreneur it completely changes your entire way of thinking, your entire perspective on life. I mean for example I could never ever picture myself working for anyone other than ME... like really, it seems like a foreign concept anymore. I have friends and family that constantly talk about how upset they are with their job, their boss, their schedule, etc. and I just think to myself that I could never do it again. I urge all of them to start their own companies, to me this seems like such a better alternative but that's because I'm used to the insecurity of where my next paycheck is coming from, they're not! To them being constantly up in the air, having immense responsibility and stress and a 24/7 work schedule rather than a 9-5 schedule is insane.

But that's my point, you really end up changing the entire framework of how you think about EVERYTHING when you work for yourself.... This is a great thing because you need that to be successful in what you're doing, but it definitely creates it's own downfalls. That insatiable desire to keep pushing.... it'll wear you out.

And so here I am.... pushing.... onto a business venture with my Dad and his highschool buddies. I've put myself right into the middle of it because I literally can't help myself, I LOVE business, I love building a brand and I'm damn good at it, so naturally I offered all of my assistance when they came to me with their idea.

Now for the best part... my husband is also an entrepreneur (shocking!) and he shares the same desire to push and push and push... so it should come as no surprise that the man has come up with an idea, a fantastic one at that, and we're pursuing that now too. He has invented a tool through many a rough day on the 4 wheeling trails and wants to patent it and sell the idea to Craftsman and the like. Usually I laugh at his daily ideas to make millions (there are more than enough to go around) but this time he's really got something.... so off we go to learn the world of product development and patenting.

So that's what's going on here at the homefront... I just have to have a reality check every so often to remember that I am human, not a machine, and therefore I need to slow down and stick to "the plan" before I spontaneously combust from trying to do too much. Read more!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Here baby have a Mountain Dew errr I mean Chocolate Formula

After hearing a snippit of this over at Momotics I felt compelled to say something too. I am familiar with the versions of toddler formula on the market which is a highly controversial topic to begin with, however, I had never heard of this Chocolate Flavored toddler formula.... yes I just said CHOCOLATE flavored.... the latest genius product to hit the market brought to you by Mead Johnson's Enfagrow.

Enfagrow PREMIUM Toddler Chocolate is a great-tasting toddler drink that is a milk-based powder for toddlers 12–36 months who are transitioning from infant formula or breast milk. Enfagrow PREMIUM Toddler Chocolate with Triple Health Guard™ provides a nutritional foundation for a developing toddler. It has as much calcium and vitamin D as whole milk for toddlers.

I'm sorry, is there a reason to flavor a nutritional supplement for babies with chocolate???!! I say babies because technically it is for those children over the age of 1... a 12 month old is still a baby in my book. I want to call up Mead Johnson and say "umm I'm sorry, take a look around folks, take a look at the obesity epidemic in this country and then justify to me why this would be a step in the right direction for our future and our children's futures"..... I have a feeling there would be dead silence on the other end of the line....

I mean are you serious???

Now let me go ahead and give some background to those of you who are thinking "well it's not THAT bad... it's just a chocolate flavor" this so called "nutritional supplement" contains 19 grams of sugar per serving! (one serving makes 6 oz) Let's put that in perspective, the same size serving of Mountain Dew contains 23 grams of sugar.... so why not just hop baby up on some Dew while you're at it eh??!! The third ingredient in this chocolate formula is sugar...

What's funny is that I'm literally sitting here watching this hit show "Dance Your Ass Off" essentially a dancing weight loss competition for severely obese individuals. I mean is it not clear to the American public that we have a serious issue here, obesity, diabetes, and other weight related issues are an epidemic in this country and yet we still have companies out there reinforcing the issues by putting Chocolate in a baby formula... what the hell is wrong with people today??

Unreal... that's all I can say about it... Since the public uproar they have pulled the chocolate flavor from the market but they're still selling a vanilla flavor which contains 17 grams of sugar per serving... wow way to make an effort ha!

I guess this is where the parenting aspect comes into play, we have to play referee and run damage control to keep companies and products like this out of our kids lives.... like we don't have enough of that to do anyway! Read more!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Blogmania Sponsor: Little Ruler - adorable skater baby goods

That's right I am quite the tom boy so when I found out I was having a boy I was thrilled! A companion to come hunting with me and daddy, to ride motocross with me, to wakeboard with me, and do boy things! But I do have a girlie side (duh!) so naturally I spent most of the pregnancy and a lot of time now that he's here scouting the perfect fashion for my little dude.

....Enter Little Ruler....

They have the CUTEST skater-snowboarder-surfer baby apparel, perfect for my little rider! Seriously cute stuff guys, for the "manly" babies out there, the "cool" guys ok! They've got an awesome selection of hoodies, board shorts, beanies, you name it they have the goods to deck out your dude! They even have skateboards and sunglasses. And they carry brands like Independence, DC, Quicksilver, Volcom etc.

And pssstt (they do have a couple cute things for girls too, but don't tell anyone I told you)

So yea head on over to Little Ruler and get yourself some rockin baby duds! Read more!

Good Eats! Homemade Baby Food

Alright so I've been making HL's baby food for several weeks now and I've got to say it is so gratifying! I love that I know exactly what he's eating, and that I can provide him with the best nutrients all by myself. So I will start a page for baby food recipes that we find and use along the way in case you're searching for some ideas or inspiration.

My goal is to make my kid the most happy eater possible, I refuse to have a picky toddler on my hands so I am exposing him to every possible flavor, texture, and spice you can think of to make sure his pallet is well adaptable. So you'll see in my recipes that I use a lot of "odd" ingredients, we're just broadening his horizons!

My portions aren't exactly precise but usually each batch that I whip up makes roughly 1-2 frozen trays of food. If you end up with extra just keep it in the fridge and use it fresh before using your frozen cubes. I also leave all of the skins on the ingredients instead of peeling because the skins are where the nutrients are and so far they've all blended up really well, if not I'll let you know!

Here's what HL has been eating lately...

Apricot- Carrot- Banana
This one is really yummy and you'd never know it had any veggies in it
2 medium bananas
3 medium carrots
6 apricots

Broccoli- Green Bean- Avocado
I will admit this one isn't the best tasting, it's a green mish mash but he eats it like a champ. Next time I may add some basil to give it more flavor since it is pretty bland
2 medium heads of broccoli
2 small/medium avocados
2-3 handfuls of fresh grean beans

Sweet Potato- Plums- Figs
One of my favorites so far, once you steam the sweet potato your kitchen smells like Thanksgiving and the dried figs are by far my favorite ingredient to use at this point, they're so good! Also great by themselves as a snack.
1 medium sweet potato (or Yam)
3 red plums
8 oz. package of dried figs (found next to the Raisins)

Strawberries- Swiss Chard- Carrot
This one smells awesome when heated up! A great combo!
6 medium strawberries
3 medium stalks of Swiss Chard
3 medium carrots

How I prepare the food:
I cut each of the ingredients into half inch cubes and then steam them either in the baby food processor or in the microwave (it goes faster if you do one in each). After steaming each item until it is "smushy" I blend it up in the baby food processor and add water as needed. I use the water created from steaming the veggies because it has lots of the good nutrients from the fruits and veggies in it instead of plain water.

In all of my combos I steam and puree each ingredient separately and put it in a bowl and then mix all of the ingredients together in the end.

You can make the food to your desired consistency. I tend to make mine a little bit on the watery side because I add oatmeal to each of his foods.

To serve:
Right now we're at 3 cubes per meal, I throw them in a bowl and put them in the microwave for about 50-60 seconds, this melts the cubes but they're still on the cool side.

Hope that gives some of you some inspiration! I'll update and create a separate tab for baby food recipes as we go! Read more!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Blogmania 2010- The year's biggest giveaway event!

Blogmania is a giant giveaway event coming September 15 & 16. (see those purdy little buttons over there on the sidebar, go check it out for yourself!) Each of the participating blogs has a special theme for their giveaway, mine is Boys Will Be Boys because after having my son I realized the HUGE lack of awesome boy products. It's nearly impossible to find great boy gear compared to the wall to wall aisles of girlie pink at every store I seem to find. So I made it my mission to seek out some amazing stores and boutiques that carry the greatest boy things you've ever seen.

So I'd like to introduce you all to the amazing sponsors for our giveaway in Blogmania 2010. It's going to be a spectacular event, a world wide web extravaganza with 175 participating blogs. Currently the giveaway total is somewhere in upwards of $19,000!!! Yea, huge right?! Seriously guys, it's going to be huge!

So meet some of these amazing shops and boutiques that are making this year possible... and go check out their stuff, I promise you they're AWESOME!

Stay up to date with current giveaway info at the blog

Find even more on Twitter and Facebook

**If you're company is interested in participating as a Blogmania sponsor please contact me! ** Read more!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Chaos in Dogland... our poor pup!

Alright so for the details of what we've been busy with these past couple of weeks.... the major source of stress and choas has been our dog Diesel. He is our baby and actually the spawn of our other two, he is the most wonderful dog I have ever owned and I have owned a LOT of dogs! He has the most amazing demeanor, he is super obedient, and never does anything wrong. He is mellow as can be unlike the other two spazoids we have. Really a true joy this dog is...

Long story short he has a long history of GI issues after his stomach surgery last March. He ate a rag and ended up with stomach surgery last year and has never been the same since. He can't gain weight like he should and is close to 25 lbs underweight. He can no longer eat dry food because he instantly pukes it back up so we have to blend his food with water in the blender at each meal. He's been a trainwreck since the surgery but happy as can be.

A couple weeks ago I noticed that he wasn't acting like his usual self and offered him some food and he wouldn't touch it, wouldn't even look at it which instantly threw me into a panic because I knew something was SEVERELY wrong at that point. I felt like we were having deja vu. We took him in to the vet to figure out what was wrong. It has been days and days of back and forth to the vet. They've done x-rays, barium studies, given him IV fluids, you name it.

It has been complete chaos.... with the x-rays we were prepared for the worst, that he had possibly eaten something again, luckily at least this far they have shown NO obstruction. This is a good and bad thing because we have no clue what is wrong with him... even the G.I vet specialists have no clue. Their solution was to do an exploratory surgery with a nice little price tag of somewhere between $5,000-$7,000 ::::choke:::: yea that's what I was thinking!! We certainly don't have that kind of money to spend on an exploratory surgery that may or may not even tell us what's wrong!

The good news is that he isn't a "critical" emergency case at the moment so we are postponing his treatment & diagnostic work until next week when we can get in with the head G.I. vet specialist in the country. He has worked on G.W. Bush's dogs and is nationally known for his expertise. He just so happens to teache at the CSU vet program about 2 hours from our house so we will take Diesel in next week to get his opinion. By taking him to the vet school we will get cheaper services since it's considered a "teaching" hospital so we'll see how it goes...

Between the dog, the baby, the businesses, and everything else we've been too busy to do much but that's the update. Read more!

Fun in the Sun!

Finally it is SUMMER here!
I can come out of hibernation ...

We decided to have a pool day today in the backyard! I found this adorable froggy pool and I blew it up grabbed the hose and voila backyard baby pool.

He LOVED it! Which was no surprise, he is truly a water baby! He splashed around and nommed on his boat and starfish. And after about 15 minutes we headed back inside because as you can see the poor child takes after his momma and is pretty much see-thru and he would've burnt to a crisp if we stayed longer. I do have some swim shirts for him but couldn't seem to find it in the gigantic pile of baby laundry that I still need to put away.

Read more!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Cluck Cluck Cluck meet our chickens finally!

So as promised I said I would get a real picture of our lovely hens, so ladies and gentlemen meet Miss Thelma & Louise. They are seriously WONDERFUL and we have so many eggs that we've been giving them away to family and neighbors for weeks now! If you've never tried a farm fresh egg let me tell you what you're missing. They are to die for! I was skeptical at first but honestly it is amazing the difference. First off the yolks are the most beautiful rich yellow-orange color, right away you see a major difference between them and the pale yellow yolks found in store bought eggs. The next big difference is the size of the yolk, our eggs have ENORMOUS yolks, big fat juicy yolks compared to the tiny ones found in the store. Needless to say the taste is out of this world, if you have tasted fresh produce like tomatoes before it's the same difference, fresh organic produce is miles above the store bought and the same holds true for the eggs.

The best part about the eggs is that I know exactly where they came from, I know exactly what the chickens are eating and how they're being cared for. It's awesome and I highly recommend it if you can do it!! We get 2 eggs a day so we get over a dozen a WEEK... that's a LOT of eggs ya'll.

Ok and here are some pics of the chicken domain!
Here's the awesome coop area nestled under the stairs of our deck...

And here's the coop inside...

This is the side of the coop which folds down to access the nesting box area where we gather the eggs.
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The Maven's Secret Garden

So where the heck have you been Mrs. Maven?? Yea I hear ya... well first is the ISR swim lessons as you saw below. Next has been gardening away! Mr. Maven decided to have a "hoe" down in the garden, literally, the poor man hoe'd his little butt off for 2 days to clear the weeds from the garden so that I could plant my bounty. (love that man!) And now we have things in the ground FINALLY. It is a little barren at the moment since I just got everything in the ground but it will be overgrown before you know it.

See the problem with gardening in Colorado is that our growing season, well, pretty much sucks! You can't put anything in the ground until after May 15 because it still snows here periodically... joy... as it did this year...

Dear poor Topsy Turvy tomato plant,
    I apologize for getting too excited and planting
    you on Mother's Day only to have you die a
    frozen death a week later in a random annoying
    stupid Colorado spring summer snow storm!
                      ~Green Thumb Maven

But FINALLY the plants are safe unless some random act of God decides to ruin my homemade baby food plans for the year and kill off my plants yet again. And just when you think you're out of the woods.... WHAM... Colorado hail storms.... double joy.... like the ones that ravaged my poor plants last year and destroyed my roof.

Oh yea and what am I growing... here's the list
Scallions & Red scallions
3 varieties of squash
4 varieties of Peppers
Dozens (literally) of tomatoes
Brussel Sprouts
A variety of herbs
Swiss Chard
... and I'm sure a couple other's I've forgotten at this point ;)

So keep your fingers crossed for the garden this year!! Read more!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Video: HL learning the ISR Swimming Techniques!!

So we have been BUSY lately, I will get to the details of that later but here's a little peek at one of the things we've been up to. ISR swim lessons, or Infant Swim Resource. If you haven't seen this on the Today show or various news programs you should do yourself and baby a favor and look into it. I got the info from my cousin who had her son enrolled and fell in LOVE with the idea.

Being a previous lifeguard and infant swim instructor years ago I am a HUGE advocate for teaching little ones to swim, however, I never thought about the concept of teaching your infant or child actual "survival" skills for the pool. Usually an infant swim class consists of moms and dads making fools of themselves while splashing around with the babe and singing the wheels on the bus. Usually there's a tiny bit of dunking involved and lots of playing, bubbles, and smiles. Cute concept no doubt but what good does this do for your child other than getting them used to the water?? Not a lot really.

And in comes ISR, a revolutionary idea in infant swimming. You don't play with rubber duckies during these lessons, the purpose is to teach your infant how to survive should they find themselves in a pool alone. Drowning is one of the leading causes of death in children and as vigilent and careful as parents can be accidents happen and it only takes a second for your little one to find their way into a pool.

I will spare all of the details of the program but tell you that the initial phase is to teach them to float and then to orient themselves into a float from various positions in the pool. And let me stop you right there, NO infants do not know how to swim "naturally" it is NOT "instinctive" this is why they DROWN!! Next up is to teach them to stay in this float position and call for help by crying or whatever they are capable of doing. You then go back for more lessons after they are a year old and they teach them to swim face down until they get tired then roll to their back and rest then flip over and swim until they can reach the edge of the pool. See the concepts here... true survival swimming skills.

As you'll see in the video HL is really getting the hang of this! He is only on day 6 of lessons and can already float alone for extended periods of time and is now learning to get himself into that floating position. He drew a crowd today because he was doing so well and the instructor says that of all the babies she's taught he is by far the best ::::proud momma squeee:::: ha! Now do yourself a favor and go check out ISR!! And watch some of their videos, they will blow you away!

*I am not being compensated by ISR for this I just think this is awesome!*

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