Thursday, April 28, 2011

Audrey has a new word

Audrey has a new word. “Ummm”

Me: Audrey, how old are you?
Audrey: Umm … 2

Me: Audrey, do you want some water?
Audrey: Ummm …. Yes.

Me: What would you like for a snack?
Audrey: Ummm … cheez-its

Monday, April 25, 2011

Slides, Sidewalk chalk, Snuggles and silliness

A few decent photo ops made their appearance this weekend and I attempted to capitalize on them.

Slide with friend Josh

Silliness with Katie

Snuggles with Cap'n
Stretches on the floor

Sidewalk Chalk

More Snuggles with Cap'n and Mama Sherri

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Worthless Teenagers and the Parents who Make Them

Worthless Teenagers and the Parents who Make Them


The father who thrives on power, works to control everything (whether he can or not) in his child’s life. He works to make sure that his child will always do and be what he thinks is best. He works to make sure that his child rises to some predetermined and idealistic life-station, and simultaneously he also works to make sure that his child never finds the ability to rise above that station. He works to guarantee that his child will be successful in whatever way he believes success is achieved. He works to force respect. He works to force love. He works to force some sense of a relationship.

The mother who thrives on power, works just as dutifully to control everything (whether she can or not) in her child’s life. She works to make sure her child always believes exactly what she believes. She works to make sure her child always learns the lessons that she believes need to be learned. She works to mold her child into the person she believes her child should be molded into. And, just like the power-craving father, she also works to force respect, love, and the non-existent relationship but forced relationship.
If you're anything like me, you are constantly questioning your abilities as a parent. Second-guessing your punishment or wondering if you should've been less strict. Maybe instead you wonder if you are too easy going and you should be more strict.

If you are anything like me, a good hard look at your parenting skills is, well, hard. I hate criticism and I hate conviction. I hate hearing how I might improve. Or worse, I hate thinking about what kinds of scars I could be leaving on my children (or step-children in this case) by my actions. So why would I dare read a blog that is shedding light on the dangers of control and what causes emotional scars? Because I desperately want to be a better parent and I want the kids to know that they are loved; they are loved by not only their parents, but by God. I truly hope they know and believe that.

After Josh and I both read the "worthless teenager" blog, we sat down and talked. We were both convicted. I, and I'm sure Josh as well, replayed all the fights, arguments, discussions, yelling, etc that has happened recently and wondered:

"Was I too strict?"

"Did I overreact?"

"Did I say something I shouldn't have just to get a reaction?"

"Did I namecall?"

"Am I just trying to prove that I'm in charge?"

"Am I unable to relinquish control of the house?"

"Do our kids have the same self esteem problems that he talks about?"

So we did the unthinkable. We talked to the kids! Yes, we did. We asked for the opinions of teenagers.
We did a little exercise at dinner last night.

We asked each of them what was one thing they believed about themselves. We then asked them what they believed each parent (there are 4 of us in their lives) believed about them.

I hope they were being honest when talking about what Josh and I believe about them. I hope they weren't afraid of hurting our feelings or making us mad. I hope they were forthright in what they believe.

It was interesting. And enlightening. And encouraging. And thought-provoking. And educational.

If you want to better connect with your kids, I suggest this sort of activity. Even if you believe you are the best parent in the world and you have the most well adjusted children possible, I guarantee you will learn something.

I am making a VERY concerted effort to be a little more relaxed in my parenting. To not sweat the small stuff. To be less controlling. (If you ever wonder how controlling you really are - live with another family and see how they do things different from you.) To recognize the human-ness in all of us, including the teenagers. To realize that I didn't get to where I am without being a fumbling teenager. To understand that life is hard enough with school and peer pressure and changing bodies and zits, then you throw in step-parents and step-siblings and 2 houses and 2 baby sisters ........ I NEVER went through that. I have no concept of what it's like to live at 2 houses and have 2 blended families.

I desperately want to be a good parent and will do whatever it takes to be the parent my kids NEED! Do you?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Rachel Held Evans | Jesus, God in Sandals

Rachel Held Evans | Jesus, God in Sandals

I started following this blog about a month ago when a friend posted a link to her. I read the link, and subscribed so that I could get the follow-up post. Now I don't even remember what it is I read that I liked so much or if I've read the follow-up.

But every week I read something that makes me think. Hmmm ........

This week it was this:

It occurred to me that if my faith managed to survive all of these doubts then this radical rabbi, this God in sandals, would require more from me than ever before. This radical Jesus wanted to live not only in my heart and in my head but also in my hands, as I fed the hungry, reached out to my enemies, healed the sick, and comforted the lonely. Being a Christian, it seemed, isn’t about agreeing to a certain way; it is about embodying a certain way. It is about living as an incarnation of Jesus, as Jesus lived as an incarnation of God. It is about being Jesus…in tennis shoes.
I am feeling challenged to go be Jesus in my tennis shoes ... well, skater shoes anyway.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Birthday Party

Audrey went to her very first birthday party on Saturday.  A co-worker's son just turned 4 and had a big party at a local little kid amusement park called Pixieland. Audrey had fun riding the rides and seeing the sites and all the kids.  Then she got to eat pizza and cake with all the kids.  The best part was the theme of the party was "Go, Diego, Go!" her favorite TV show.  She was ecstatic to see all the Diego things and get a Diego goodie bag to bring home.



Car Ride

Car Ride

Car ride

Sitting very well for a caricature.

Walking with daddy and her new butterfly balloon.

Eating pizza with the big kids.

Eating pizza with the big kids.

Watching the ducks and turtles in the pond.

Church Egg Hunt

As mentioned in the Mommy and Me Post, today was the annual Egg hunt at church. Here are some photos Josh captured while she ran around trying to collect the eggs.

Mommy and Me Monday - Palm Sunday

DSC_1032 by Christsstar

DSC_1032, a photo by Christsstar on Flickr.
Today at church was the annual kid Egg hunt. Audrey ran around trying to catch all the eggs while Josh chased her with the camera. Meanwhile, I kept Annie occupied and out of harm's way. Josh paused from Audrey's photo shoot to capture one of me. Thanks Josh!

Head on over to Krystyn's blog for more Mommy and Me moments.

Hosted by Krystyn at Really, Are You Serious?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I can't believe...

...that I'm going to be the mother of a 2-year old next month. WOW!!!!

I mean, she already has the attitude of a 2-year old, but next month it's going to be official.

Cloth Diaper FAQ

I have been asked a lot of questions about the practicality of using cloth diapers.  I will attempt to answer those here.

Q: Is it harder than disposable diapers?
A: Not at all!  I don't have to run to the store late at night to get a diaper because my daughter got diarrhea suddenly.  I don't have to look for coupons or go to the cheapest store. 

Q: Do you use cloth when you go out?
A: you bet!  Since we started using cloth over a year ago, we've only used disposables a handful of times, and mostly that was because they were free.  I carry a wetbag with me and put my dirty diapers in there in the diaper bag.  No, my diaper bag doesn't stink.  In fact, when I used disposables I would carry my dirty diapers around in that too until I got home.  I never felt right throwing away pee and poop-filled diapers in somebody else's trash.

Q: Do you need special things in your diaper bag?
Nope.  Just the diapers and the wet bag.  I used to carry around plastic bags for my disposable diapers; that just was substituted with a cloth bag for my cloth diapers.  I still take a change of clothes and wipes (although cloth wipes now) and a binky or two and hand sanitizer and a sippy cup and sometimes teething rings or toys.  Depends on where we're going and how long we'll be out.

Q: What about daycare?
A: I'm lucky in that in the state of California, all daycare centers, whether in a home or commercial facility, are required to use whatever diapers I want.  So ... my daycare provider uses cloth.  And since my girls are the only two not fully potty trained, they're is no confusion in whose diapers belong to whom.  I have a bunch of a single type ... Flip ... and that's all I send her with.  That way changing is easy and not at all confusing.  She gets a wet bag and my wipes.

Q: What about poops?
A: the super solid poops get dumped in the toilet.  The breastmilk poops just go straight in the diaper pail.  The in between, sticky poops get rinsed with the diaper sprayer.

Q: Is there a special washing technique?
A: YES.  This is the most important thing to know about cloth.  How to properly wash and care for your diapers.  The goal of cloth diapers is to absorb liquid, so it is very important to not use a product that could cause the diapers to get what is called build-up and thus repel the urine.  The diapers are also going to be against a very sensitive part of the baby's body and the cleaner the diapers, the better.  Is is important to have a detergent that is free of whiteners, brighteners, softeners, enzymes, etc.  Nothing oily or greasy.  Just cleaner.  There are many diaper-friendly detergents on the market, and depending on your particular water supply, it is often a trial and error method to finding what works best for you.  For drying ... the best way to dry is in the sun.  But that's not possible for everyone.  So dry on medium in the dryer.  To decrease drying time and to help with some of the stiffness, Wool Dryer Balls are AWESOME!

Q: How do you store the dirty diapers? Do you need a wetpail?
A: I use a simple trash can with a lid.  I have it lined with an AWESOME Planet Wise Pail liner.  I have two liners, that way I can put a clean one in the trash can when one is washing.  I store the can in the garage, but have stored it in the bedroom too.  No wet pail is needed.  If you want to prevent staining on the diapers, rinse immediately and completely with previously mentioned diaper sprayer.  

Do you have any questions that I have not addressed here?  If so ... leave them in the comments section or shoot me an email.  I LOVE talking about cloth diapers.  It's one of my favorite topics.

And don't forget to head on over to my facebook page and "like" me to get updated information on sales and new products and whatnot.

Monday, April 11, 2011


I cannot say that word without thinking of Finding Nemo.  That is by far my favorite Pixar movie ever!

BUT .... this isn't about Finding Nemo.  This is Audrey's adventure for the day.  She got to play with bubbles for about an hour today.  She played with them at church awhile back and loved them so much that I had to get some when I saw them at the Dollar Store.  

So today, our sick day, I decided it was a perfect day to stay home and play with bubbles.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Sunday Fun

What do you do with the boxes after you put the new bed together???

Make a clubhouse of course!

April Giveaway - Diaper Parties by Everything Birth Bay Area

Hello Spring!  It's lovely to see you!  

In honor of spring and in preparation for summer, I am thrilled to give away a Swimmi cloth swim diaper.  Swim diapers are a must for any cloth diapering family in the hot summer months.

Entering the giveaway is easy.  Just the giveaway over at the Everything Birth blog and then hop on over here and leave a comment and you'll be automatically entered to win.  I will randomly choose a winner (via a random number generator) on April 30th.

The grooviest swimsuit in the universe - baby fashion will never be the same!

From the Riviera to the neighbourhood kiddie pool, your baby will have the cutest bum around. And rest assured - nobody will ever have to empty the pool because of your little darling! Fashion and peace of mind - what better combination can there be in a baby swimsuit ....

Engineered with painstaking attention to detail and functionality:

  • A trim and attractive design that has a terrific fit on any baby
  • Interior polyester mesh for easy clean ups
  • Coated nylon layer sandwiched inside that will hold in the messiest stuff a baby can throw at you!
  • Fun, unisex cotton prints on the outside
  • Adjustable hook and loop closures for a snug and comfortable fit

    Stretchy soft lycra bindings to protect baby’s tender skin

Want to keep up to date on what's going on with Diaper Parties in the bay area?  Head on over to my Facebook page and "like" me. 

Want to host a party?  email me at and let me know.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Mommy and Me Monday - April 4


I was a little more prepared for Mommy and Me Monday this week. Seeing as it's Sunday and I'm already uploading my post.

After dinner last night, the four of us went out to the back yard to play with the dog. In an attempt to get some really cool camera angles I laid on the ground. Audrey then took it upon herself to get on my back. I couldn't pass up this prime opportunity to take some self portraits. Self portraits with an SLR are not easy. But we got a couple where you can actually see our faces. We had great fun in the backyard and hope to do it again tonight.

For more Mommy and Me fun, head on over to Krystyn's blog.

Mommy and Me Monday at Really, Are You Serious?
Hosted by Krystyn at Really, Are You Serious?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

March's Giveaway Winner is .....

And March's giveaway winner of an Imse Vimse Cloth Trainer is ................


email me at to claim your prize.