on opinions and the word should.

The thoughts for this post surfaced around 4:00 am, so hopefully it turns out as good as it started in my head. Yesterday I finished a sewing project and I showed Dave and asked if he liked it. He, predictably, was like "sure. it's a skirt. how do you have opinions on so many things?" And I think that is a good question.

I'm wanting to make a quilt for sam. I was going to before he was born and the decided not to...and then saw this one and decided to make one. I'm in the process of decided the colors to use (black, white, striped and three shades of blue/teal). I'm looking online and have spent three days going back and forth because I can't find colors that are ombre-ish enough or blah blah blah. I can find the darker shade and lighter shade but not a good middle one. I probably need to go into a store but thought I would try online first.

I have also asked Dave his opinion on the colors which I knew was laughable. I've mentioned before that Dave cares about almost nothing that isn't alive, so I don't know why I try to wrangle opinions out of him. I've also written before about my indecisiveness, and last night I was thinking about where that came from. Why is it so hard to pick three colors (or even decide on a final color scheme?) It's not the last quilt I'll make (or maybe it is, I don't know if I like quilting yet). It's certainly not the last yard of fabric I will buy nor the last of anything.

I think back to my childhood/adolescence and I honestly can't remember being so indecisive. Maybe I just didn't have to decide that much. Sure, there were a few hard decisions but day to day, I guess not much worth noting. Then I went to college and got married and it's like...where did all these opinions come from?

I often ask Dave "what should I do/make/buy/wear..." and he always tells me I shouldn't do anything, meaning it isn't important enough to be a should. But I can't think of a way to phrase my questions with language that isn't implying it's important (because yes, it's usually not that important).

And I don't mean to sound like Dave is a robot who never is interested in anything. When it really counts, he is a great sounding board and decision-maker helper (?). But I usually ruin it by over-thinking. Ah, there is the problem. I became this over-thinker who often can't make a simple, non-binding and not-the-end-of-the-world decision without help.

I was thinking last night that it's probably in part because of the internet. I mean, we see so many things that we want and can use. (hello, pinterest) I mean, I'm looking up on google if there is a best kind of cotton brand for quilting, although I have to say the results were not helpful. But reviews exist for everything and I, at least, usually base some purchases on reviews. And even when they have 4/5 stars, I'm wondering if I will get the dud of a product that produced the 2 star review. I've kind of become dependent on deciding some things based on what other people think.

Last week I went to a fabric store to look for a striped fabric for this quilt. I saw one that immediately caught my eye, but continued to browse the store (I want all the fabric). But I did end up getting that first fabric I liked. I continue to find that my gut decisions are what I should do or should have done in the first place (and there is that should again, implying importance.). Maybe ought is the word I should use? What ought I to do/make/buy/wear...? Or maybe it should just be "I want to do/make/buy/wear..." and that is that?

What do you think? Are you an over-thinker or are you really good at deciding things?

aimee finally comes to visit!

 

I've been meaning to post this all week, but it turns out today is as good as any day to do it because it's Aimee's birthday today. WOOT WOOT. She hates get older but I think it's pretty fun. Aimee flew out for Sam's blessing which was awesome. She hasn't been up to Portland or met Sam yet, so we all felt this was a priority! He may not look too thrilled up there, but he had fun. Aimee and Sam hung out and I had extra time to do little things. win-win. We both also really like to go grocery shopping and spent way too long at trader joe's wandering around. 

She had some bad luck as far as the food she wanted to try: one cart was closed and the other was closed for an hour and a half right when we got there...so we walked down to the waterfront and I waited in the voodoo donuts line (an hour? not sure it's ever worth the wait but oh well) while she checked it out. Then we snagged some koi fushion on the way back and the day was kind of a success, besides the part where she almost starved to death. She did get some salt and straw ice cream so that was definitely worth coming here, I hope.

Then on Sunday we went to Council Crest where you can see Mount St. Helen and Mount Hood and all of Portland. It's a great view on a clear day. This is me channeling jack donaghy (WATCH THIS CLIP) as Aimee didn't know what to do with her hands. A nice candid moment.

Hopefully she'll be able to come visit again soon because we loved having her here!

3

 
Sam keeps us laughing with his funny expressions and reactions, excited leg kicks and how he copies us when we stick out our tongues. He also doesn't mind getting spit on a lot as that always get smile out of him so...we always do it.

This past weekend was windy, delicious (koi fushion) and musical (bagpipers (?!) by the soccer stadium we live by). Oh, portland.




lest you get the wrong idea...

I'm not saying that we have everything together. Sometimes I spend half and hour or more trying to get him back to sleep during a nap. He doesn't always transition between sleep phases very well (and "the pause" doesn't always fix it). So sometimes I give up. He spits up on everything and when you can't imagine where he is getting anything else to spit up. He also loves his pacifier and sometimes he wants it so bad but can't keep it in his mouth for longer than 10 seconds. We are thiiiiis close to taping it to his face sometimes. Instead, sometimes we hold it in place with a blanket (with supervision) until he falls asleep.

He can go 6+ hours without eating but sometimes he'll go 3 hours and 5 minutes and he cries like he IS STARVING TO DEATH. It's like dude, keep it together. He doesn't always like being swaddled but still wakes himself up flailing his arms. Or his pacifier will fall out and he'll wake up. You know he's asleep for good when it falls out and it doesn't bug him. And sometimes he's fine until I step into the shower and starts crying. These are the things we laugh about and know they won't last forever. 

I read a facebook status of a friend whose baby slept for 5-6 hours for the first time and they were all worried about him. I did that when he was a newborn and went 3.5 hours in between eating one night. The first time he slept 6+ hours I didn't even notice until he woke up because I was sleeping very soundly. It was the first time I got more than 3 hours of sleep in a row in months...

And he has had these runs of days where he'll eat at 8:30 and sleep until 5. I try not to get my hopes up about those because they don't last longer than 4 nights, and then it's back to 2 times a night. And twice isn't even that bad, but after once or not at all, it seems that way. Sometimes we can get another hour by putting a pacifier in his mouth (if that works we know he wasn't really that hungry. If he keeps crying I feed him, of course). We don't have any expectations that he should sleep through the night yet, but we are getting to the point where we may just let him figure out he isn't going to starve and he can self-soothe. But, you know, I'll wait until next week, when he's at least 3 months and out of the "fourth trimester" because that is when they (you know, "they") say babies are finally adjusted to life? We'll see. Maybe we'll attempt routines and set wake up and bed time around then. But I've kind of liked the attitude of having a newborn: you feed them when they are hungry and they mostly sleep anywhere and you can't really mess them up. As long as he slept for longer periods at nights, I felt that was a success.

Ah well. any tips?


everyone says this love will change you-

For the last few months I've been wanting to write all these essay posts on motherhood and babies and all of those things. But I feel like it's all been said on other blogs that I love to read, so what would I say?

I remember before Sam was born I was really wondering what you do with a baby all day. And although I'm not to the stage yet where sam is mobile or even awake more than an hour and a half at a time, luckily it isn't as bad as I thought it might be. By the time he eats and I change him, we have about an hour or less before he goes to sleep again. He is still pretty content to just lay on your lap and listen to ridiculous noises and songs and the same little phrases over and over again in a weird baby voice. (also, times like these I'm glad I'm home alone?). Sometimes I read him dr. seuss books and he seems to like that, but who knows? Sometimes he "plays" with the play gym while I do other things. I wondered how you were supposed to know when your baby is tired and when you put them down for a nap, but it turns out it pretty obvious when they start to get tired.

We try not to worry too much about if we're doing it "right" and just do what seems to work best, whether it's feeding or napping or playing. I still check his chest to make sure he's breathing and sometimes when we go to sleep and he's been asleep for awhile and is quiet, I always ask Dave if he thinks Sam is okay. (and he always is.)

Sam is a good eater and a pretty good sleeper (though we are super excited for 12 hour nights), and we feel blessed to have such a sweet-tempered baby. I'm sure that has made all the difference in our transition into parenthood. I also wondered before he was born how it would feel to have a baby stuck in the middle of our lives. But it turns out, we like it and it doesn't really change things too much. Or, at least when he's very portable and usually quiet. But he's just there and we love it. Putting him in the car and making sure we have extra diapers and onesies is just a part of our lives now. I even wondered if I'd ever forget he was in the car when I went somewhere by myself, but lucky for me, I haven't even come close to forgetting (thank goodness, right?), and planning errands around how I will be carrying/strolling/holding a baby is just the thing I do these days.

Sometimes people talk about an overwhelming love they feel for their baby when he's put on their chest or they hold him for the first time...and Dave and I both have mentioned that we never really felt that. (I felt overwhelmed alright, but for a lot of other reasons...) He was just our little cute baby and we loved him and having him in our lives. Not to say meeting him wasn't a sweet experience, but it just wasn't as big and dramatic as people say sometimes. I think we were just ready and already had a little bit of experience in what it's like to have that kind of love in our life.

The first week and half of having him home was so great. Dave was home and we just hung out all day. I got really sad (and often weepy) thinking about Dave returning to work. What was I going to do all day by myself? And who wants to change that many diapers? But he went back and we survived. And when I say we survived, I mean we did just fine resting on the couch catching up on downton abbey and sleep. Oh, I loved those first few weeks because they were so slow and sweet.

And then I recovered and my motivation to do things slowly returned. We ran errands, we walked around the city and I had lists of things to do. Just enough to feel like I was never done with things to do, but not so much that I felt that I never had any time. He slept so much that I had at least 4-5 hours to do things I wanted during the day, so I felt I wasn't losing myself or my life in having to care for him all the time. Not that that is a bad thing necessarily, but I didn't want to be completely overtaken by motherhood. And now I don't think I have quite as much time, but time enough. And some afternoons still consist of me holding him for a nap because he'll only be this little once.

And time goes on and he's getting more fun to play with and gives us huge smiles and little coos and we love it. He's almost three months and almost no longer a newborn, which is a little sad to me. But time has gone slowly enough that I really have felt able to enjoy all the time in between.

And so those are my current thoughts on motherhood. I'm loving it and am grateful that it has been a mostly easy transition. Everyone has different experiences and children and their own unique view of motherhood. This is mine, and really, with this cute baby, I'm not sure how it would be any better! He's a lover.

 
 -well I ask, "isn't that what love's supposed to do?"

same changes, the weepies

samuel jason

 

Sam's middle name is jason, after my dad, who is awesome. Over Thanksgiving break my grandma dug out the little onesie that my dad was blessed in and we used it for Sam (we did not, however, use the bonnet that came with it, ha). 

His outfit was a little hodgepodge but it worked out just fine. A bowtie and pants made by me (and I seriously finished those pants with hours to spare. yikes), onesie from the 60s (oh Sam, you're so cool and you don't even know it) and my favorite little striped shoes made by Shanna. Unfortunately that was the last time he will wear them and I will have to attempt making him a larger pair. We will see how that goes. 

Most people think Sam is a mini Dave and neither of us really see it. I mean, yes, we can see it but not really. Sometimes he looks a lot like my dad, which is fitting. Mostly, he always just looks really cute no matter who you see in him. The picture I didn't include of Dave is the one where he looks like he's going to kill someone because that is how much he wanted to take pictures. So, you know, the usual.



(photos 1,2,3 and 6 by bruce)

brunch



We had family in town over the weekend for Sam's blessing and we had a little brunch afterwards. We (or rather, I) don't get (or "get", according to Dave) to throw parties that often so I wanted to you know, try a bunch of pinterest ideas. Okay, I stamped some paper cups and bought some striped straws and that was my pinterest party style. Dave thought I was crazy but oh well.

We had a waffle bar (not related to pinterest, we just like waffles) and then some desserts, which I realized weren't necessary because waffles are pretty filling and once again, I'm eating basically a whole cake by myself. Good thing I made it a 6"? I made this cherry vanilla cake but with morello cherries. I also tried a new kind of frosting: swiss meringue buttercream. It was easier than I thought and it is really good and pretty frosting. 

It was fun to try out new recipes and throw a little party with family and food. Thank you to all who came! We loved having family come from all directions and are grateful for all our family and friends.

(cake photo by my brother-in-law bruce, grapic)








salt & straw again. and again. and again. and one more time.

 

Last Monday my aunt came into town, followed by my sister on Friday and the rest of my family on Saturday. We've had a lot of fun and one of my favorite parts besides just seeing visitors is that it's a great excuse to try out new/old favorite places to eat. 

We've been to Salt & Straw a few times since we lived here but since last Monday I have been oh, you know, four times. Each time was delicious and I'm hoping people just keep coming into town so I have an excuse to go there. yum!