Monday, June 29, 2009

Monetary Gifts For Baby

Is it appropriate to use a portion of the monetary gifts for baby to buy a new Vacuum cleaner?

Finley really loves the sound of the vacuum. If I wear her and turn on the vacuum she will go right to sleep sans "Horror Hour" and Momma (who is allergic to everything and has a thing about stuff stuck to the bottom of her bare feet) does like a clean house. I am pretty sure the saying goes; if momma is happy everyone is happy but in our case if Fin is happy we are all happy.

My vacuum sucks (pun intended) it is such a pi&% - off. It's constantly falling apart and they don't even make the hepa filter anymore ... I realize it's the motion and the noise the babe likes but nap time shouldn't be riddled with her momma saying "earmuffs Finley" while I swear and repair my vacuum 49 times between the kitchen and living room and don't even get me started about the beater bar and the ... well you get the drift. Really a new vacuum is for HER not ME. Really. Don't judge.

I am looking at this vacuum.

Send me your thoughts....

Friday, June 26, 2009

Jumping On the Bandwagon

What a week in entertainment obituaries. Some expected and one surprise - all sad. Ed Mc Mahon, Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson.

I don't recall a time when I didn't know who Ed McMahon was. I think his success has been over shadowed in past years by his money troubles and I don't find that funny. He played an important comedic roll as the set up artist and side kick to Carson on the Tonight Show a roll that has been emulated but never duplicated in success. Although, a close second could be Hockey Night in Canada's Don Cherry and Ron McLean.

When it came to backyard play versions of Charlie's Angels I was always assigned Kate Jackson's character Sabrina -by default cuz my hair was brown. Oh how I longed to be Farrah's Jill. Her very public battle with cancer was documented at her insistence. She wanted to show North America what cancer really looked like. A documentary lover I am, but, this was one I could not watch. I have seen it first hand during my mother' six year battle and it hit a little close to home. If you believe in heaven like my mother did, you can be guaranteed she is waiting to high five Farrah for her courage, upon her arrival to the pearly gates. For my part I decided to pull out my curling iron and pay tribute to Farah once and for all by sporting her famous hairstyle. This project has failed miserably as the humidity is giving me big hair circa 1970's MJ fro and not so much feathered Fawcett. (How's that for a segue? - a perfect set up eh McMahon?)

My friend Connie who has crafted a successful career around her love of music wrote a great tribute to Micheal Jackson - you can read it here. I can only speak to his influence on me as a preteen growing up in a small farming town.

After school I loved to tune into Video Hits a 30 minute show produced out of Toronto to watch the latest videos, Robert Palmer, Huey Lewis, Gowan, George Michael, Madonna and the greatest videos were always by Michael Jackson. Billie Jean with the light up side walk - how cool was that? Clearly I recall the excitement of watching the Thriller video at a friend's birthday party. Eight or 10 little girls standing around the TV mesmerized by Jackson's transformation into a zombie. For the next few years every Halloween brought zombie Jackson's to the door. Thriller has shaped pop culture for an eternity, I think.

I still remember at time when I fell in love , I remember a time when we first met, Micheal. I loved watching him dance, we always tuned in if he was to perform on an awards show. My mother called me from bed to the TV to watch the replay of the Micheal Jackson Pepsi/fireworks/ burnt hair accident/incident. Kmart (I wasn't always a label snob) was riddled with PVC knock offs of Jackson's red zipper coat, my cousin had a sparkly glove and suddenly my high water pants (due to spaghetti legs & growth spurts) paired with white sport socks had become fashionable. Thanks for the rescue MJ.

Later, my sister and I reprimanded our Dad for not taking the "Bad" album as a prize at the curling club. (He redeemed himself by having it taped for us - which didn't seem so frowned upon back then) Bad was the soundtrack to which my sister and I choreographed countless dance sessions in the basement.We rewound and played it over and over while we practiced Jackson's dance moves (I am pretty sure I more closely resembled Richard Pryor.) I laugh still thinking about my dad dancing and singing the chorus to BAD in the kitchen pointing to my sister and I singing "Who's Bad?"

I have also often thought about the fine line between genius and mental illness. Mental illness does seem to afflict child prodigies and the most truly gifted, artists, painters, writers, mathmaticians and scientists. Warhol studied Celebrity in Life and Death and surely MJ would fit in here. We cannot dissociate the antics and oddities, plastic surgeries and court cases that caused the tabloids to coin the term Whacko Jacko from Jacskson. My thoughts are that Jackson lived in suchh a watchful world he was forced to become recluse and that must have contributed to his health. Too much time alone in your head is not always a good thing. He was obviously a tortured soul despite all his success, talent and wealth. In his passing I hope he has found the peace he had been missing, free from the scrutinizing eyes of the poisonous paparazzi.

MJ's, dance moves, his fashion and above all his musical legacy will shine brightly influencing musicians for years to come. I know my sweet baby girl will be heard singing along to the radio when Man in the Mirror or Billie Jean plays. I am certain she WILL be embarrassed by her dorky parents as they emulate Thriller dance moves across the floor at some family wedding.

In the passing of these three famous people we are reminded that we are all the same regardless of stature, fame, money. We can all be touched by financial struggles, cancer and mental illness. We learn from those who must fight their battles publicly and hopefully we are sensitive to it when those in our own community are affected.

This week I say good bye to a childhood friend who lost his 7 month battle with Leukemia, and I welcome three baby girls; Jane, Ayda and Ruby born to dear friends.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

I've Been Cheating

Dear Yoga Mat,

I have been cheating on you with a pair of Asics orthopedic custom fit running shoes. I know how this must sound to you, who know my bare feet so intimately. We used to hit it for an hour and a half at least four times a week, but, since the baby we have only gotten together once. It's been 11 weeks and I miss you so much.

It's not that I prefer the sneakers. It's just that they are new and younger and so easy to slide into when I am tired. When the baby is crying, sometimes all I can think about, are the Asics sitting on the mat by the door, a pair of socks laying at their side, teasing and taunting me to put them on. I see you too Yoga Matt rolled neatly waiting for me in the corner of the room. But the shoes can offer immediate gratification from the sound of baby cries bouncing of the walls. I put on the Asics, head outside and then all I hear is SILENCE.

It's a different silence than the peaceful calm I feel after we have rolled through a set of sun salutations, it's so different I swear. There is nothing like the relationship you and I have. I lie in bed a night and long for the morning when I can wake up, unroll you, plant my bare feet firmly on you and feel the rush of our contact. It was you, Yoga Mat, who soothed the baby when she was in utero.
Photos Courtesy Witzgall Photography

It will be you who will soothe me and the baby again. Only you understand me. I think the Asics are just a phase I am going through. Yoga Mat it's you I love and hope you will forgive my absence so we can get back together. With you in my life I am a nicer person. My husband says so.

Still hopelessly devoted to you,
Mother Ship

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Daddy Land

First Comes Love
Photo Courtesy: Witzgall Photography

Then Comes Marriage

Then A Year and A Half After the Wedding
Night The Husband Takes the Wife Out for Ice Cream ...

Photo Courtesy: Witzgall Photography

Then Comes the Baby in the Baby Carriage!

Happy 1st Father's Day Daddy!
Love Finley Mae (& Momma too)

Performing a puppet show for Momma

After the beach

Taming the hair...yeah right!

Sleeping in.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Saturday on Washington Water Front

This Saturday our family volunteered at the book sale. We are members of "Friends of the Library" and each Saturday the members set up at the Farmer's Market to sell gently used books. The books are donated or have been worn out and replaced on the library shelves. All proceeds from the sale go back into library programs and the purchase of new books. Steve and I are book worms. We often buy books here one week, read them and return them to sell again.

It was 104 degrees with a soft breeze. Our new friends Nancy & Dave look cool as cucumbers. We managed to turn a tidy profit by selling each book for ONE dollar and under!

Our little Farmer's Market runs from 8am-12pm each Saturday from May to October.

This week there was also car show. Dave told me he had one just like this one only it was a two door, he bought it for $25.00. His dad sent it to be crushed while he was away flying in WWII.

I liked this car. It reminded me of the ones in "Endless Summer." It even had a surf board on the roof with a glassed in fin. How's that for kickin' it old school?

Steve and Fin watching the wake boarding competition also taking place on the waterfront. That was our Saturday. Pretty exciting hunh? And it all took place before 2pm on our clock! The rest of the day was super chill.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Baby Weight

Hey Mommas!

Can post-partum HAIR-LOSS be factored into baby weight loss?

If so, I MUST be close to my pre-baby weight.

Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to vacuum the bathroom floor AGAIN I go. Honestly the vacuum looks like I have trapped a squirrel in it with all the hair wrapped around the Hepa filter.

Happy Friday

(Yay me - I actually know what day it is.)

Monday, June 15, 2009

2 Month Well Check.

It occurred to me just now (as I stared at the blank screen, pondering what I would write about in this post) that I have not slept well in a few nights. I know you're probably thinking of course you're not sleeping well you are a new mother to a nine week old. The truth is I have had no trouble sleeping at night since Fin arrived. I can't nap during the day though I have tried- once I'm up I'm up so sleep when the baby sleeps is lost on me.

Right now I am actually sitting at my desk on my 19" exercise ball with Finley in her Ergo carrier attached to my front. It is four hours after she had her 2 month well check and her first set of shots. She is now passed out. Her little head tipped back, her mouth open, her pretty eyelashes framing her heavily closed lids. I am looking at her and the tears are filling my eyeballs ... about to spill over.

Brief Intermission for Momma to sniffle and grab some Kleenex - snort, snot and try not to get mascara tears all over the head of my darling first born.

Two hours ago Finley was shrieking and I was doing my best to settle her. I know she is fine but I am not. It occurred to me that I have not slept well since Thursday night. I felt tired and wired all at the same time. I couldn't pin point why I was not sleeping until now. I was anxious fabout Finley's 2 month check up - I was anxious about her shots.

I spend all day everyday protecting her, shielding her from too much sun, mosquitoes, from rolling over and getting stuck on her face. You get it. I bounce on my exercise ball while singing every song I ever knew the words to to get her through a colicky time and soothe her to sleep and I have been doing all these things without naps and tears of my own. And then came the shots.

I have read all about immunizations; the studies linking to autism, the studies disproving the link to autism, safety factors of not immunizing, splitting the immunizations into several shots as opposed to the regular schedule. My hubby and I decide there was no question of course we would immunize. In fact with him there never was a question.

I have just spent the past nine weeks gaining Fin's trust through comforting gestures But, the fact that I have to hold my sweet baby while she smiles up at me and then receives her shots - one in each tiny thigh was killing me. Ohh, this whole thing has made me sleepless.

I have begun to attend a Natural Parenting Group who meet on Monday mornings. Our appointment this morning conflicted. As we departed last week I mentioned I would not be there as Finley had her 2 month check up and her shots. The mom's all looked at me with sympathetic eyes. I said, "I may show up here late and in tears." They said I wouldn't be the first mom to do that - they'd welcome me.

Finley's appointment went great. She is 11 lbs 11oz and 24 inches long. She is healthy, responsive, laughs, turns towards me when she hears my voice, she rolls from her back to her side and back onto her back, she has found her hands and brings both together and tries to jam them in her mouth and she has begun to blow bubbles and talk to me. All the things and a few more than she needs to be doing at this check up.

Finley waiting for her Doc.

Momma explained to her about the shots.

What do you mean I can't get the vaccine orally?

The doctor said she is just awesome and can have a little Tylenol should she be running a mild fever from the shots, he then sent in the nurse. I knew what was coming and I braced myself, Fin didn't know what was coming she smiled at me from the exam table. I brought my face down toward hers, I held her arms gently in my right hand and rubbed her head with my left hand while talking to her in a calm voice. The nurse said; "okay here we go" Finley 's eyes grew wide, her face turned red, she shrieked and stared at me and I talked to her and soothed her and when it was done I nursed her to calm, redressed her, popped her in her car seat, drove directly to Starbucks and fueled up on caffeine. Fin fell directly to sleep the second the car began to move. She stayed asleep while we got the groceries done, drove home, unloaded, put groceries away and checked the mail.

In the mail was a card from one of the mother's in my parenting group whom I had met only once. It was just such a thoughtful card and included a gift certificate to a local restaurant. She just wanted to offer a little gesture of support. Knowing the adjustment to having a baby she hoped the gift certificate would help out. And that's when the dam began to break. My eyes welled just a little at how thoughtful this person was and how neat it is in life that you seem to get a boost from the wings when you need it most.

Finley woke up, played a little ate and then cried hysterically...I figure she was tender from the shots and probably a little uncomfortable. I began to cry with her. I gave her a little Tylenol took her up to bed where we curled up together and for the first time WE took a nap.

When WE woke up we were no worse for wear. Finley smiled at me throughout her feeding, then played with me and when the tired eyes came I popped her in the carrier for her nap so I could sit with her on my bouncy ball and enter this blog with one hand.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Wrist Jingle = Proper Nutrition

This is Finley's afternoon snack.

She loves waving it and trying to eat it, until, she discovers that it is not a BOOBIE.

Friday, June 12, 2009

2 Months Old

Two Month June 10, 2009

One Month May 10, 2009

Finley's Birhday April 10, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Fin's New Cousin

June 5th our newest member of the family arrived:

Congrats to Jennie, Matt, big sis Kaylee and big bro Bastian on the birth of Zoey! 

Finley getting in on the welcome wagon.

Okay, this makes 6 babies under 3 years of age on Steve's side and 5 babies under 2 years on my side ... we may require ear plugs and lots of access to booze to get through the next bunch of family gatherings.  It's going to be SO MUCH FUN!

Baby P's A Beach Baby

On Sunday we spent the day at Fort Macon Beach NC. We usually find a less populated place to camp out for the day but the waves were breaking perfectly right in the midst of tourist land. So that's where we ended up...Finley slept the whole day. She didn't care where we were situated!

The weather was overcast and even raining when we arrived at the beach and then the sun came out, the breeze was side off and it was not too hot out so it was a perfect day.  But, I think any day is perfect when I get to spend the day at the beach - especially with my  new little family.

10:30 AM Sleeping

12 Noon Sleeping

Steve going out to try his "new" short board ( thank you tax return!)

Steve on his "new" long board (thanks again tax return!)

2PM Sleeping

5 PM Still Sleeping!
Finley & I did take a good long walk down the beach to where no one but the birds were hanging out towards the inlet it was so peaceful. I collected beach glass until my hand was full and then we headed back to watch Steve surf with the dolphins.  It was a pretty awesome day. 

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Natural Body Care for Baby & Momma

I have been using this product from a Canadian company out of BC on Fin.  It was a shower gift from my massage therepst friend Nee.  it's all gone and I have just bought a giant bottle to replace it!

It's called Scentuals Baby Steps natural baby lotion with organic hemp seed oil. It contains no synthetic dyes or fragrances. It smells DEVINE and is wonderful on her skin. She was very chapped looking at birth for perhaps being post due I was told, also told not to put anything on her skin that it would clear itself up. I waited a week and then I used this cleared it up in a matter of a couple of days.

The ingredients are: hemp seed oil, calendula oil, oat protein, a soft light blend of essential oils and some other wonderful ingredients. (I can't give away the whole recipe!)

I have the most sensitive skin on earth - it's dry and eczema prone, I have always had to be super careful with the products I use and rely heavily on handmade soaps of the oatmeal and goat's milk variety to keep my skin  from acting up.  Finley's skin is pretty great so far but I have only been using natural products on her. Better safe than sorry I think!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

An Interview With My BFF (MTV Canada's Makeup Artist)

Meet Lucky B - she's awesome, famously funny and I miss her bunches.

Follow this link to her most recent articles in Adorned Magazine

She is also famous for starring in and doing key makeup for my series: Girls Will Be Girls.

GWBG aired in Prime Time-Nationally in Canada October 2005 - 2008 on

And is CURRENTLY airing on MTV2 in Canada
consult your local listings :)

Me suiting Lucky up in some lactating breasts for a "milk in coffee" gag at Starbucks.

Lucky and I promoting the series premiere on Etalk

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Vacuum TRUMPS Lullabyes

Our baby has been very fussy the past week.  It starts up at around 6pm and caries on until ten or eleven pm.  Why? We thought it was onions and she was gassy. So I eliminated onions from my diet (see ya in 8 months my oniony old friends).  Then we thought she might be constipated. No that is rare in a breast fed baby.  We asked around and were told:

 Sometimes babies just fuss. 

Hahah you have children this routine until they are 35.  

Yes, babies have their own temperament

They'll grow in and out of these phases. 

Wait until she starts teething - it's enough to make you want to leave home.

SUPER! These are the types of advice you are not told until the deal is signed sealed and delivered.  Before that you get told how wonderful babies are and how amazing the love and the faces of your child are. And they are. The tears are part of it - for both parent and child!

I read up on COLIC. Apparently babies born naturally - drug free- are NOT usually colicky. MY BABY DID NOT GET THIS MEMO!  I also read that colicky babies like movement and repetitive noise.  So for the first week I bounced up and down on my 19" exercise ball. She fell asleep and I worked my abs, we mowed the lawn (we have a push mower no motor), we played Hip Hop music and danced in the kitchen almost all day Sunday when she was colicky from 1pm to 10pm and we've been on countless walks. She likes to be in the front carrier for all of these wonderful activities. By yesterday momma was tired.  Dad Dad had just come off a string of days in charge in the E.D and he was tired. We traded her off all day and then...I looked around my house and saw dust bunnies the size of our dog and decided...THE CURE TO COLIC TONIGHT WILL BE THE VACUUM.

Guess what? It was!  She fell asleep in no time. She stayed asleep. My house is clean and we both woke up this morning with a smile.  

Monday, June 1, 2009

Bottle Flop & Fashion Show Success

As promised I am reporting back with the my boobie fed child's reaction to the bottles I bought.  She took an ounce and a half from the adiri bottle. Wouldn't take any of the other bottles I left out and survived until my and my boobies arrived home.  I did feed her right before I left and was only out for 3 hours in the time of day when she usually goes longer between feeds and has a good sleep.

When I arrived home I fed her and then she waited about a half hour and  threw up all over me. So I guess we know what she thought of the whole bottle deal.  Either she worked herself up or she ingested too much air from her bottle feed?  In a seven weeker - who knows? 

Here she is decorated in Momma's milk looking no worse for wear!

My mother in Law Linda is a lactation consultant. She suggested trying a longer nipple for the bottle to see if Fin will take that, as it will mimic the real nipple, which when in the baby's mouth becomes elongated and presses into the baby's pallet.   My sister in law Dee suggested Playtex Vent Air.  So I will try that too.  JUMBO THANKS to Dee & Grandma Linda for Babysitting Finley so I could go out to participate in the fashion show.

The Fashion Show benefiting the Turnage Theatre Foundation was a success.  There were 8 store showing their clothing from the Main Street in Washington NC. Word on the street is we raised 11 grand! Pretty Awesome I think!

Here are some pictures of the models I worked with for this event.

Two designers peaking out at the audience.

Mary Grace
 (She stole the show!)

(Mary Grace's Momma)

(Beth's Momma - beautiful family hunh!)


(Alice's Daughter)

Alice Stallings
Designer Extraordinaire!

A little backstage primping. Girls Will Be Girls!