Sunday, September 30, 2007

Boobs, Boobs, Boobs

Last June, I babysat a friend's newborn baby a few hours a week so that she could do some home visits for her job. Kate thoroughly enjoyed "helping" me take care of the baby. On one visit, Kate asked me, "Mommy, where is the baby's mommy going?" "She is going to work," I replied. Kate looked at me funny and said, "Silly Mommy, GIRLS don't go to work!" I was horrified! As important as it is to me to be a SAHM, I also don't want my children to think that women aren't an important part of the workforce.

And to be honest, some days I miss my career (I'm a nurse for those who don't know). So since that day I've been pondering what I can do that will give me the satisfaction of a career but the flexibility to be the mom and wife I want to be. My first step is to reactivate my RN license and have it transferred to Colorado. To do that I need 20 hours of continuing education. As I looked at different programs to get the CE, I found one that I feel really fits my current interests and my current experience. I am excited to tell everyone that I am taking an online class on Lactation Education. I started yesterday. When I complete it I will be a CLEC - Certificated Lactation Education Counselor.

Now don't ask me what I am going to do with this, because I don't really know. I've thought about using it to volunteer with a few local agencies. I've thought about taking a part-time job on a mother-baby unit. I've thought about using it as a stepping stone to become a Lactation Consultant. Maybe I'll do absolutely nothing with it.

And this happens to tie in really well with The League of Maternal Justice current mission for a Virtual Nurse-In on October 10th. I plan to participate with a blog post and pictures of me from my breastfeeding days. Thanks to Amy at Crunchy Domestic Goddess for the heads-up!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Until Noon!

I slept until noon today! I can hardly believe it. I knew I was tired, but I didn't realize I was THAT tired. I've been fighting a cold and maybe the same tummy bug that Kate had earlier this week. I've been up several times each night this week with kids throwing up, wetting the bed, and general "I need Mom" stuff. Plus we had a bit of a late night at a friend's house last night. The kids came in at about 7:30 this morning, but Matt quickly shuffled them upstairs to give me a bit more sleep. He has the kids off doing something.

So much for the pancake breakfast at the pumpkin farm we were planning to do this morning...

Friday, September 28, 2007

Artificial Colors

My sister sent me this article about artificial food coloring, and it really got me thinking. To be honest, I have never thought much about artificial coloring in my food. Did you know that artificial colors are made from petroleum and coal tars as well as insects? Yuck! And artificial coloring has been linked to children's behavioral problems (hmmm...), allergies, and tumors.

I went through my pantry and refrigerator to see what we have with artificial colors. I was pleased to find just a few items with artificial coloring, but I was surprised at what did have artificial coloring. I expected only to find it in neon blue or bright red food, but it was in some fairly bland colored foods. Kraft Light Done Right Zesty Italian dressing has Yellow 5 and Yellow 6; Brach's Autumn Mix candy corn (bought during a weak moment a few days ago) has Yellow 6, Yellow 6 Lake, Red 40, Red 40 Lake, Red 3, Yellow 5, Blue1 AND Blue 2 Lake. Yikes that's a lot! The biggest surprise for me was Blue 1 in a bag of mini marshmallows!

So now in addition to checking labels and not buying anything with hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup, I am going not buy anything with artificial coloring.

Check your cupboards to see what artificial colors are hanging out in your home!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Greenfeet For Our Heads

The kids need new pillows. The ones we are using are gross. Not only are they old - I'm pretty sure they are older than my relationship with Matt - but the pillows have also been through all the known kid messes - pee, poop, blood and vomit. Nice, huh? Going through the wash a gazillion times in the last 2 years hasn't helped much either.

As in much of what I acquire now, I try to find the most environmentally appropriate choice that is still economical. Despite dust mites not being an issue in Colorado, used pillows are absolutely not an option. They must be new. I looked a bit and was pretty happy to find the Eco Basics pillow at the Greenfeet store. The fill is made of 100% recycled soda bottles and the cover is unbleached cotton (wish it were organic cotton!).

Before we use the new pillows, I am definitely getting waterproof, protective covers!

And don't worry... I won't save the old pillows for guests! *wink*

*Enter code AUTUMN during checkout to receive 15% off your purchase. Not valid with other offers, on sale items, mattresses, or on large appliances. Excludes shipping. Expires 10/10/2007

Big Green Rabbit

My birthday was a good one. I'll share stories and pictures (and presents!) soon. Unfortunately, Kate started getting sick with an upset tummy late last night, so we skipped preschool today and are hanging out in my bed watching TV. We'll probably do that all day today. I have to admit that sometimes I like a good excuse to put them in front of the TV so I can get some stuff done around the house.

Speaking of TV, I'm pretty excited to see the debut of The Big Green Rabbit show next Monday on PBS. When I saw the first advertisement for the show, I got really excited thinking that it would be a children's show aimed at environmental issues. The online description says that it is a children's multimedia lifestyle brand dedicated to reducing childhood obesity and connecting children and nature. While I am certainly a proponent of creating good eating habits, I also hope there is an emphasis on nature as I think a connection with nature is one of the first steps to leading a more environmentally friendly lifestyle.

Can't wait to watch the first episode!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Just Overheard...

Kate reading a book aloud to herself, "Fe, Fi, Fo, Fum, I smell the blood of an English muffin."

Happy Birthday To Me

35. Midway to 40. Halfway to 70. Advance maternal age. An age I used to consider old but now consider quite young.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Menu Plan Monday

Gotta cook despite all the drama! Can anyone guess what I have an overabundance of in my garden right now?


Monday - Matt works late, dinner out at Jason's Deli

Tuesday - Eggplant Roll-ups

Wednesday - Salmon cakes with spinach salad (spinach from my fall crop!)

Thursday - Date night - Community Meal for Kids - No cooking!

Friday - Indian Spiced Eggplant (new recipe)



I'll try to post the other recipes later. For other menu ideas go see Org Junkie

Gotta get Kate off to preschool and Jack to the neighbors so I can go to more mediation. If I'm not to drained, I'll try to post about it later today.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Sunday Morning

Matt left early this morning to ride the Monarch Crest Trail near Salida.

Got this email from my neighbor/landlord yesterday evening which is making me very optimistic:

Kristen:
I thought you said something about a family that was interested
in renting. I am willing to talk with them. Is there a phone #? How do you
know them?
J

We have a mediation session this afternoon, an individual meeting with the mediator this evening, and another mediation session tomorrow morning.

Please send good thoughts and keep your fingers crossed.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Another Half

Happy Half Birthday to my Jackalope! He is officially 2.5 today. I don't know if it is a boy thing, a second child thing, a personality thing, or a mom-knows-how-to-deal-with-it better thing, but the twos have been fairly mild for Jack (although he certainly has his moments!). Keep your fingers crossed that he remains this way!


I wish I had all of his stats... he is about 33lbs and (I'll measure his height and come add it in!)


Things Jack is doing...
  • Talking up a storm. Uses long sentences, tells stories, engages other children with language.

  • Growing taller and skinnier by the day.

  • Likes to fall asleep in little hideaways - behind the rocking chair, behind the door, under the bed, etc. (apparently his dad used to do the same thing)

  • Climbs on EVERYTHING. I haven't figured out how he does it yet, but he can get up on the countertops in the kitchen...

  • Loves music. Loves to tinker on the piano and makes up his own songs.

  • Can say his ABC's and his numbers to 12. Is recognizing a lot of letters and numbers, and knows the sounds of several letters.

  • Likes to tinker and "fix" things with his play tools.

  • Is starting to build with his train set instead of destroy it.

  • Likes to get into his big sisters things.

Greenstyle Videos

We are off to have a family day. A little swimming, a little shopping, and hopefully more laughing than whining.

A few little video snippets that I found on CNN this morning while browsing. I have thoughts about all three videos but not time right now. Maybe later today or tomorrow.

Green Renovation
Sustainable Fashion
Organic Labeling

(and I was really happy to see that one of the "commercials" that you often have to watch before seeing the videos was about nurses, which reminded me that I need to sign up for my continuing ed class. Can't wait to tell everyone what it is about!)

Friday, September 21, 2007

Switch Planet

Have you visited the Switch Planet website? It is pretty cool. It is a free swap meet for books, CDs, and DVDs. I've signed up and plan to list some books that I don't want/need anymore (there is a whole parenting section for books!). I'm also going to list some CDs and DVDs as I clean out and prepare for my possible move.

I am also thinking about selling some things on Ebay. I've never sold anything on Ebay (although I've bought plenty!) so I need to figure out how it all works first.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Much Needed Alone Time

I'm an introvert. Not that I don't like to socialize, but I need time alone to reenergize. It can be difficult to find that time as a mom. With all these meetings and discussing issues with neighbors and friends, I have felt very drained and very in need of alone time. I finally got some alone time on Tuesday night when Matt let me go see a movie ALL BY MYSELF. I don't think I've ever seen a moving alone, and it was a wonderful experience.

Originally I wanted to see an artsy movie since I rarely watch movies anymore, mutch less artsy ones. I considered this, but I really needed something lite. I really want to see this one, but the times didn't work. (I might ask my babysitter to come over so I can go see it at a mantinee next week). I ended up seeing The Nanny Diaries. Just what I needed. Brainless and entertaining. The other major decision of the outing was what to eat during the movie. I couldn't decide so I got both popcorn AND Milkduds. It was good.

The next morning I got another hour on my own while the kids were in preschool. My coffee date cancelled on me, so I sat by myself and enjoyed a large, spicey hot chocolate. I did nothing but think. It was good. Next time I am going to try some sipping chocolate since Amy seemed to like it so much!

On other fronts, we have our mediation with the neighbor on Sunday afternoon and again on Monday morning. And we are going to look at another house tonight. This one has the potential to be very dreamy.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Bad Habits Die Hard

Several months ago, after several months of considering it, I bought all new stainless steel water bottles for my family. And even though I think we should be outgrowing sippy cups, I also bought a few stainless steel sippy cups as our old, plastic cups are getting pretty old and starting to leak. The problem? We have been using the stainless steel water bottles and sippy cups, but we haven't stopped using the plastic water bottles and sippy cups. Why? I'm not sure. A big part it is that the old things are familiar and still there. It is just habit for me to pull out the different colored sippy cups, fill them up, and hand them to the kids without even thinking. It is like I forget we have the new stainless steel cups.


And why are the plastic options even still in my cupboard? I'm honestly having issues ridding myself of the old, plastice bottles and cups. A part of me keeps worrying that I will regret not having the old ones and want them back. I've thought about packing them up in a box and storing them just in case I want them back at some point, but then I think that I *shouldn't* want them back even if I do. (did you follow that?!?)

I'm also having issues about what to do with the bottles and cups if I decide to do something permanent. Do I give them to charity? But if I think they are unhealthy for my family, why is it okay to pass them to a less fortunate family? There probably aren't too many stainless steel sippy cups going to charities right now. Isn't a plastic cup better than no cup? And would this family even appreciate a stainless steel cup vs a plastic one? And what is my alternative? Throw them away to fill up a landfill?
So today I vow to put all of our plastic sippy cups in the donation basket.

I bought my Klean Kanteen sippy cups from Reusable Bags. They have the cups on sale right now plus I used coupon code mth6cp for an additional 20% off. There was limit on the coupon code, but it may still work!




Monday, September 17, 2007

My Cowboys

We went to a western themed wedding on Saturday night at a local commercial ranch. It was very casual, and the kids had a great time. There was a train ride, horses, and brick paths running all over. I snapped a quick picture of my two cowboys...


Menu Plan Monday

Last week's meal plan got a bit messed up... Matt ended up working late on Wednesday so we ate leftovers, we changed Thursday to family date night and did a pizza picnic in the park, and we went to Matt's work dinner on Friday night. Since I still have the ingredients, some of this week's plan is the same as last weeks.


Tuesday - Butternut Squash Risotto

Wednesday - Community Meal - no cooking - woohoo!

Thursday - Date Night - kids will have Tofu Fishy Sticks with roasted sweet potatoes

Friday - Steak on the grill with a Shredded Beet and Carrot Salad from Great Food Fast
Other kitchen related tasks this week include freezing grated zucchini, trying a new snack recipe for Lima Bean & Roasted Red Pepper Dip that I pulled out of an old Natural Health magazine, and preparing snacks for preschool next week.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Days of the Week

Just overheard Kate reciting the days of the week, "Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Threesday, Foursday..."

New Girl

Matt's group is interviewing candidates for jobs, and each candidate and their spouse is taken out for a nice dinner as part of the interview process. Most of the wives so far have been okay. Nice, but not much of a connection. But the wife last night was awesome. I knew we had a connection when she started asking about farmers' markets, CSAs, and local farms. And then she ordered the beet, peach and goat cheese appetizer - my favorite! We even hugged each other goodbye! Keep your fingers crossed that they like their tour of the city today and take the job. I would like to have another wife in the group who is into the same things as me.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Thought for the Night

It is really difficult to conserve electricity when you 3 yr old has suddenly decided she is afraid of the dark and wants EVERY light within 20 ft of her room on all night long (and gets up to turn them back on if she finds them off in the middle of the night!) At least they are CFL lightbulbs!

My Moon (girls only!)

I have a neighbor who is very French. When we first moved in, Kate was just beginning to talk, and I was in a quandry over what to call Kate's private parts. (I know it isn't very feminist of me, but I just don't like the "V" word) This neighbor informed me that in France female parts are often referred to as your "moon." Makes perfect sense really. Females cycle in a similar fashion and on a similar time table as the moon. So Kate used the term moon for awhile, until the whole subject went by the wayside (she now just refers to it as her bottom).


So when my friend Penny recommended the Mooncup, I loved the name. I also loved the idea of a reuseable... uh... feminine product. But I was doubtful. When it came in the mail, I was REALLY doubtful but willing to try. So my next cycle I tried it out. It didn't go so well, and I gave up after the first day. It is now a cycle or two later, and I decided I should give it a go again. I did a few things differently, and it worked amazingly well. It isn't messy, it isn't uncomfortable, and once you get it positioned right, it doesn't leak. I *almost* can't wait for my next cycle to try it out again! And I don't know what I am going to do with all these tampons that I have stocked up.


The other brands of menstrual cups that I am aware of include The Keeper (which is the Mooncup, just latex instead of silicone) and the Diva Cup. Of course neither name is quite as cool as Mooncup.


Just don't leave it out where the kids might find it. I caught Kate using mine as a bathtub toy...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

ASPCA Henry Bergh Children's Book Award

Henry Bergh just had a birthday a few weeks ago. (I meant to post this on his birthday, but I forgot!) He is the founder of The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty for Animals (ASPCA). Every June at the American Library Association's national conference, the ASPCA presents the Henry Bergh Children's Book Award to honor books that promote the humane ethic of compassion and respect for all living things. I am always on the lookout for books to help my children develop empathy and understanding of the earth and its inhabitants, so I purchased a few of the books that won awards this year.

Buddy Unchained won the Companion Animals Award. It is a cute, little book about a dog who is abused, rescued, and adopted into a new home. Kate loves this book. She actually got teary-eyed the first time we read it. It is now a must-read for her before bed, and I've even noticed an increase in her caring for our neighbor's dog since we started reading the book.

Tale of a Great White Fish won the Fiction: Environment and Ecology award. Most of the concepts in this book are still beyond Kate and Jack. They can't quite follow and comprehend the timeline, but I think they'll grow into it. They both now know what a sturgeon is both showed some concern about the falling rocks and the fish being caught. And I learned quite a bit about sturgeon. Did you know that they can live to be over 100 years old?!?

Butterfly Eyes won the Poetry and Illustration award. The recommended age range was above our family, but I couldn't resist an environmental poetry book. I love this book and its illustrations. It has poems describing living creatures in a meadow, and you guess what is being described. The answer page gives you information about the creature. And if you don't read it word for word, it is very appropriate for younger children.
You can see all the award winning books here.

Cute Pic

Look who we found sneaking some leftover snacks out of our Chariot...

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Big Day in Our Little Drama

The mom next door supposedly (as I never really know what to believe) has a custody hearing today. I've heard that the hearing is "on the phone" which seems odd to me, but I know nothing about law and custody battles. I had been hoping they would go to California for a few days and give us a bit of much needed respite.

Matt and I are almost ready to make an offer on a house we found. I really like the house and can see us living there forever, but it certainly is a 180 from where we are living now. We really need to sell our current home to make the numbers work. We are waiting for the results of this custody hearing and then plan to advertise our place as available (we have heard through the grapevine that somebody might be interested in buying our place).

I am having an internal struggle with what I want the outcome of today to be. I want to stay in my home, but that means wishing custody (full or partial) to this boy's father. Despite the mom's problems and the doubts of others, I still believe that the father is the root of this child's issues. I just can't find it in myself to wish harm (ie father's custody) upon this boy even if that means my problems would resolve and I could remain in my home. I've been trying to send "supervised visitation" thoughts out to the universe. If you want to send some also, I'd really appreciate it!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Menu Plan Monday

I'm going to start participating in I'm an Organizing Junkie's Monday Menu Planning. It is going to be cool here this week, so I am going to pull out a few of our comfort meals. I'm also going to try a few new recipes. Here is our plan for the week:

Monday - Sesame-Maple Roasted Tofu from Oct 2007 issue of Eating Well

Tuesday - Community Meal - no cooking - Woohoo!

Wednesday - Hamburger Buddy also from Octo 2007 issu of Eating Well

Thursday - Date Night - the kids will have Chicken Burgers with Zucchini and Apple (from Favorite Family Meals cookbook) and Baked Beans

Friday - Butternut Squash Risotto

*I'll post links to the other two recipes soon!

The Best Chicken Salad Recipe Ever

We got lucky for our brunch yesterday. There was so much leftover chicken and salmon from the wedding reception the night before, that we just reheated it and served it for brunch! I now have LOTS of chicken to use up. And even though I didn't make the chicken salad, I thought I'd share the recipe anyway. My two favorite things about this recipe is substitution of yogurt from some of the mayo and the fresh rosemary from my garden!

Rosemary Chicken Salad

3 cups chopped chicken
1/3 cup copped green onion
1/4 cup chopped smoked almonds*
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup mayo
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Combine ingredients and stir well. Best if allowed to marinate a few hours or overnight. Goes really well with some flat bread crackers from a local bakery and a slice of cantaloupe.

*All the canned smoked almonds I have found have partially hydrogenated oils so I use a spice smoked almond (can't remember the exact name, starts with a "T") from the Whole Foods bulk section.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

I Did It!

I met my goal of running the whole 5K! Not one bit of walking. I'm pretty proud of myself. I came in 2nd in my mom's running group so I feel pretty good about that as well. The best part of the whole experience was supporting and being supported by the other moms. It felt so good to have the mom who finished before me loop back and sprint the end with me, then we kept looping back and finishing with the other moms as they came in. And running in with the final mom was AWESOME! It felt so good to be part of a group, and all in our matching tops.

My personal run went pretty well. I kept reminding myself to keep my pace slow. I really didn't want to get a side ache. Even as people passed me, I concentrated on slow and steady. Unfortunately, I think I actually kept it a little slower than I needed, but that's okay. The first climb (which is about 3/4 mile) went much faster than I expected. I had hoped to be passing people on the climb, but no... most people were passing me. Even a wiener dog with stumpy little legs passed me up! When I made a comment to one of the moms in my group, another woman kindly reminded me that the dog had 4 legs and I only had 2! LOL I did feel a bit frustrated that so many people were passing, but then at the 1.5 mile marker I noticed that I was doing some of the passing and by 2 miles I was doing A LOT of passing. All in all, the run really felt good and at no time did I feel like I was struggling. I started sprinting at the 2.5 mile marker. Maybe a bit soon, but it felt good until the last 50 yards, and fortunately at that point I had Annette running with me and encouraging me to keep at it. I crossed the line at 36 minutes (I think my actual time will be a little less based on starting a bit back in the pack).

And I did end up beating that little wiener dog.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Busy Weekend

It is a busy, busy weekend for us.

Today I had my final mom's group run before our big race and then did a big shopping trip at Sam's as we are cooking the community meal Sunday. I know many people hate Sam's because it is part of the Walmart family, but I love it. Probably because it appeals to my crazy need to stock and horde food and other basic necessities (remind me to blog about my bird flu supplies sometime).

Not only our we cooking brunch for the community, but we are also incorporating a wedding brunch for my dear friend and neighbor who is getting married tomorrow. Matt and I have served enough brunches for the community that our meal plan is now pretty easy. We are serving rosemary chicken salad, mock tuna salad (for vegetarians), fruit assortment (pineapple, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries, grapes), veggie assortment (snap peas, baby carrots, celery, cherry tomatoes, broccoli florets), bread assortment (from Whole Foods, one is gluten free), and a cheese platter (including my favorite local goat feta). For dessert we are having carrot wedding cake and ice cream. I'll post my chicken salad recipe soon. It is so yummy!

We spent the afternoon at the swimming pool. Trying to get in as much outdoor pool time as we can before the weather turns cooler and the pool closes. Tonight we attended the wedding reception for our friend (they are doing it a bit backwards... reception first, wedding second!); I visited with neighbors and held their newborn grand baby (so tiny, gave me a bit of the baby bug); and I prepared for my big race tomorrow (clothes ready, morning snack ready, car keys out, etc).

Sunday is going to be busy as well. Race in the morning, brunch and clean-up in the afternoon, and mom's running group potluck tomorrow evening.

Whew!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

First Day!

Today was the first day of preschool for Kate and Jack! Celebrating little things is very important to me (thus why I like half birthdays!) I wanted today to be special for the kids so I made banana chocolate chip pancakes using my famous pancake recipe.* We had outfits all picked out (Kate had a new outfit, Jack didn't... not preferential treatment, just somehow when I was buying preschool clothes for Jack, I forgot that it won't be freezing the beginning of Sept!) Daddy had the day off so he got to go with us. We even had a new book to prepare for the first day of school. Here are my babies all ready to go...
I knew Kate would do great, but I wasn't sure about how Jack would do since he has never been left somewhere unfamiliar before. No need to worry. He didn't even look up when I kissed him goodbye. They both came home with art projects and stories of preschool. I think it is going to be a good year.

*Here is my favorite pancake recipe. This recipe makes just the right amount for me and two preschoolers. I use all kinds of variations depending on the season. Add blueberries in the spring/early summer, shredded zucchini in late summer (also good with a few mini chocolate chips!), chopped apple in fall, a few spoonfuls of canned pumpkin in fall and winter, or for special occasions - mashed bananas and mini chocolate chips!

Whole Grain Pancakes
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 tbsp of wheat germ
1 tbsp ground flax seed
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 tbsp soy flour (optional )
1 & 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 egg
1 tbsp oil
1 cup milk
1/4 tsp vanilla

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Blend liquid ingredients and add to dry ingredients. Mix well. Heat some oil in a pan over medium hat and pour batter in 1/4 cup measures into pan. Turn when bubbles form in batter. Cook until golden. Enjoy!!


Monday, September 03, 2007

Seven Year Itch

Matt and I are celebrating our 7th wedding anniversary today. Not much planned. We did a short run together this morning up in the mountains. I came home early to try to accomplish a thing or two. Matt is spending the rest of the day with his dad and the kids.

A few pics from our big day...


Our ceremony


My favorite close-up
Another favorite


View from the ceremony site

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Countdown to Raceday

One week and one day until my big race. I'm getting pretty excited. I ran the course with my moms' running group this morning. It felt good. I ran a slower pace than I would have liked, but those hills are tough. I'm not sure what to expect race day. I don't know if my pace will be faster because of the adrenaline or slower because of the crowds.

After the run, a rep from Susan G Komen for the Cure came to speak with us. Her name is Connie Smith, she is an 11yr breast cancer survivor, the winner of the 2006 national Suzy Komen award, and a very inspiring woman and mother. Her goal is to run every Race for the Cure event worldwide. She is expecting it to take at least 13 years. After listening to her speak this morning, I've been inspired to join her team and run the 25th anniversary Race for the Cure in Dallas in October. You can read more about Connie on her website Run 2 Infinity.

When speaking of her disease, Connie mentioned that before her diagnosis, she was ignoring or downplaying symptoms that she was experiencing. She has also inspired me to go have a long overdue physical and have a few things checked that I've been meaning to get checked. I recently found a spot on my breast that I don't think is a "lump", but I'm not certain it is NOT a lump. I'm calling to make my appointment first thing Tuesday morning.

I won!

I'm so excited! I won the sling contest over at Crunchy Domestic Goddess! Woohoo! Can't wait to get it and post some pics. Thank you, Amy!

And to reminisce about my babywearing/slingin' momma days, here is a picture of Kate at about 10 days old in the sling. I don't have any of Jack in the sling (well, I have one but I look so bad that I'm not going to display it in a public place!) Check out how short my hair was!