Thursday, May 31, 2012

Shabby Apple Giveaway

I've become quite obsessed with dresses this summer. I'm constantly scouring websites looking for the next must-have dress. One of the sites I always look at is Shabby Apple, so I was thrilled when they offered a $50 gift card for me to give away to one of my readers.

I love the vintagy feel of their clothes, I mean, how adorable is this dress?

I would totally wear it to a wedding we're going to if I didn't have issues with wearing white to a wedding.

I love color and would wear this to work every.single.day.
 I need this for next time I'm pregnant.

Maxis are so big right now.

Ok, I'll stop, but you get the point. Shabby Apple has adorable clothes and I wish I could keep the gift card for myself but that wasn't our agreement :)

I will say though, that not only do they have cute dresses, but they have cool accessories ( I want so many of them!) and even adorable kids clothes!

How do you win?

Mandatory: like Shabby Apple's Facebook Page and leave a comment letting me know which item is your favorite. Leave your email address in the comment so I can easily contact you if you win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



If you can't wait or don't win, use this code for 10% off until June 30th: undomestic10off

Good luck! 




You must be a public follower of Undomestic Chica via Google Friend Connect and have a valid US shipping address to win. The contest ends Wednesday  June 6th and the winner will be announced on the blog and by email June 7th.



PS
Don't forget Mrs Monologues is giving away a Lilo Print!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Parenting Tricks I Learned From My Dog

Parenting a child is much like training a puppy. I'm realizing more and more lately that the same tricks I used to train Teddy I know use to parent my children.

Use a firm, but gentle voice. I don't believe that I need to yell at someone to get them to listen. I've always tried to get Teddy to listen to my commands by being gentle but still firm. When I say, "Teddy, go to bed," I say it in a way that let's him know I am the boss but not in a way that will make him afraid of me and react out of fear.

Recently, Peanut has begun to stand up on this kid's rocking chair we have. I tell him, "Peanut, sit down," and sometimes, "Peanut sit down right now." So far, he has always reacted by sitting down. My tone of voice tells him I expect him to sit down, but he is not reacting because I'm angry.

Expect them to listen. When I give a command to Teddy or ask my children to do something. I am not wishy-washy and let them get away with not doing what I ask. I am just confusing Teddy if I let him get away with not listening to my commands. I feel the same way about my children. Kids look to you for guidance, if you ask them to do something, they chose not to do it and you let it go, they will learn they don't need to listen to you. This does not mean that I'm an overbearing, or controlling mom in any way, but I do my best not to give them mixed signals when asking them to do something. Of course, I make sure they are age-appropriate requests such as "Please come here, " or "Sit down please."


Overpraise the behavior you like while ignoring the behavior you don't.  When Teddy does what I ask, he feels like the biggest rockstar, the best dog that ever lived. For example, Teddy lays down when I ask him to, "Good boy, Teddy, good down, you're so good!" When Peanut sat down when I asked him to earlier: "Thank you, Peanut, good job!" as I rub his back. He gave me the biggest smile and ate the praise up. 


We make Teddy sit in his bed during dinner so that he doesn't sit at our feet begging with his puppy dog eyes. If he whines during dinner, we ignore it. I don't want to give him any attention for behavior we don't like. I believe that, to dogs, any attention is good attention. When the Bambinos do something we don't like, we address it, "Please don't push your brother," but we don't give it close to the amount of attention we give their good behavior.



Set them up for success. When I make Teddy stay, he gets antsy if we make him stay too long. Rather than making him stay, him getting too excited, getting up and getting admonished for getting up without the release command ("okay!") I let him up before he gets up on his own. I ask of my kids only what I know they can handle. The things we ask of them are very, very simple: "Legs down," when changing their diaper, or "Come here, please," or "Hold still, for a second." I ask them to follow directions that their 16month old selves can handle.  


Don't get me wrong, these instances do not mean I treat my children like pets at all. But people often say that a dog is good practice for a baby and it is absolutely true. Having Teddy first has made me more patient, more loving, more...soft than I was before I brought him home. But most of all, he taught me how to love unconditionally.


PS 
Stop by Mrs. Monologues today, she's giving away a Lilo Print!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Overwhelmed

I'm not missing, and I'm missing blogging, but I decided not to blog this week. I'm taking a four day weekend and I'm so completely overwhelmed with everything I need to do at work/home before we leave.

Before you get all, "Lindsay, you shouldn't tell people you're leaving, what if someone breaks in?" I have a vicious dog and Boyfriend that are staying behind so don't even try to break in.

Yup, that's right, I'm going away for four days with just the Bambinos, my sister is meeting me there, but I get to spend time in my favorite place to get away, with my family in Eastern Washington.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A Look Inside My Closet

Have I ever shown you how anal detail oriented I am?
You can just barely see it here. Yes, the Bambinos are too adorable, but did you notice the bookshelf? Let's take a closer look:
Did you notice it?
All the books are in descending order by size....just as they should be.

Don't get me wrong, they don't look like this all the time. I'm fully aware that I have two 16 month olds and one of Bug's favorite things to do is pull all the books off the shelf one at a time. H grabs and drops, grabs and drops until he finds one he might actually want to hang on to or "read." Often as I get ready to read them their bedtime story, I'll organize the books where they'll stay until at least morning time. And I always organize them before I take the Bambinos' monthly pictures.

Their closet is another example  - it's organized by the colors of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, gray, brown, black, white. Short sleeves first then the color spectrum in long shirts then "nice" shirts like polos and button ups. I have been known to completely reorganize the closet and put things where they "belong" after B puts their clothes away. I find it much easier to find stuff that matches in the morning if I keep all the colors together. Some people organize by size, I organize by color. Yes, I know I'm lucky B even puts their clothes away - he's a clean freak, remember?
My closet is the same way. Dresses, skirts. work shirts, t-shirts then short sleeves and long sleeves. Each one of those categories is organized in rainbow fashion, and then my shoes are organized in whatever way they will fit. I wanted all the boxes to fit as well as possible.

Some people think I'm crazy for keeping shoes in boxes. I think they stay in much better condition so I've been keeping them that way for close to 10 years now. Plus, I find them easier to stack..... otherwise they'd most likely end up in a pile.

Oddly enough, these are my only three "things" I like things to be neat and orderly but these are the things that I'm the most anal detail oriented about. Because it takes me awhile to get things exactly the way I like it, I put organizing off as long as possible. I guess this attention to detail is probably whey I hate cleaning so much - it takes me forever! But when I do it it looks damn good.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

I Got a Ring!

Not that ring. Sorry.

Sunday morning, I woke up to this on the dining room table.
The jewelry box back there is from the pearl earrings B had made for me, but this time it held another special gift.

I knew I was getting the ring, but the other stuff was a surprise. He made the excuse that he needed Red Bull for softball and must have purchased everything else then.

Yeah, B had softball on Sunday - Mother's Day! He'll have games on Father's Day too. At least they were at 9 and 11am so he was home by 12:30ish.

I was looking forward to having a picnic at a park near our house on Lake Washington, but when B's family got there it was way too crowded and they chose another park.

We had a nice picnic then took the Bambinos to play on the playground equipment. It was pretty warm (80 degrees) so they weren't super interested in the toys but they had a ton of fun walking around (Peanut) and pointing at the airplanes (Lovebug.)
We tried getting a good family picture, but this was our best.


Peanut loved walking around putting things into his cup. Mostly it was small rocks but occasionally he'd try and pick up gum, B had to really pay attention to that one!
We met right at naptime so even thought they were way overdue, both Bambinos were so well behaved. After we took them home and gave them a nap, B let me pick any place I wanted to go to dinner...and I chose Doofers.

It was so fun just hanging out and enjoying my boys. This picture is kind of blurry, but Lovebug was being so cute. He started patting B on the back!
B did such a good job making this a good 2nd Mother's Day.

 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Pregnancy Revisited

Sorry if you're a long time reader (if you are, I love you!) but this is going to be a regurge of my pregnancy. And a lot of links back to my original posts about it.

I had absolutely no morning sickness. I remember feeling a little queasy for a week or two before I found out I was pregnant, but I thought maybe I was trying to fight something off or maybe it's because I was doing a cleanse and was just really hungry.

I've always kind of had stomach issues where I feel with my stomach so if I've worked out too hard or I'm too hungry or I'm upset about something, I kind of feel like I want to throw up. It wasn't until my boobs started getting bigger that Boyfriend suggested I might be pregnant. I was about 3 weeks late but I take my pill every sing day at the same time, I couldn't possibly be pregnant, could I? 

The morning after he made that statement, I got up at 5am and went to the store for a pregnancy test. I peed on the stick and instantly two pink lines appeared. "I'm going to be a mother." I smiled with a sigh of ....relief? Happiness? I'm not really sure which of those two feelings it was, but I loved the little peanut already.

Boyfriend and I work for the same company but different radio stations. It killed me not to be able to tell him, but work was not the appropriate place. I stopped by his house after work where he was building a new fence in the backyard so he could get a dog and mine would have a playmate (ha!)

That was Friday of Father's Day Weekend 2010.

I thought I got pregnant Memorial Day weekend but it actually happened closer to Cinco de Mayo. We had our first doctor appointment, which I blogged about, and found out that I was 4 weeks further along than I thought and Boyfriend reacted so much unlike his usual goofball self. I stayed calm.By the time we actually had an ultrasound and they dated the pregnancy, it was too late to do genetic testing but everything was a-ok anyway.

I started having weird dreams about the babies and their genders. August 25th (18 weeks) B felt the first kick from Baby B. I'd been feeling him for a week or two by then, but it was fun for someone other than me to feel them.

We agonized over revealing the genders, but it didn't matter, because the office messed up our ultrasound. Eventually we found out the genders but decided to keep them a secret.

In September, we went to the fair, where I ended up with two pearls. That's still one of my favorite stories to tell, it's just so crazy. Also in September we  finally decided to reveal the genders (<-video alert!) Once I knew and had been looking at cute clothes, I couldn't keep it a secret any longer.

Registering at Babies R Us, Boyfriend was hit with a hard reality: the number of diapers we would need every day. He had no idea.

At the beginning of October, at almost 6 month pregnant, I moved in with Boyfriend. We had been planning to move in together eventually, maybe after his new dog got settled in. (Ha! again. He never got a dog, he got two adorable Bambinos instead.)
my old bedroom

Also that same month, I traveled to Portland twice because my cousin was getting married. We took what is quite possibly one of my favorite photos of B and I. It's framed in our house.
At the end of October (26 weeks) my sister threw me the awesomest baby shower where people were SO generous. The amount of stuff we got was insane. It was during this time that I realized B and I were not the only ones to love these little guys so much.

B went in to full nesting mode (I never really nested...is that weird?) And tried to finish up all kinds of projects before the Bambinos were born. He turned the car port into a garage, complete with electrical and plumbing and everything. He painted their nursery, tore down a wall, covered up two doorways, turned a hallway into a walk in closet, and added insulation under the house. He was a busy busy guy, but it left me free to sit around and read or watch TV and I needed the rest.

At almost 28 weeks, I took my last trip - we went to Eastern Washington to visit my Grandma. I never did go on bed rest but I wanted to be closer to home for the rest of my pregnancy since twins tend to come early. That same month, our work threw us a baby shower (<-video if you want to see how big and swollen I was!) And we received enough BRU gift cards to get our double stroller! It was such a relief to have all the big stuff purchased. We were more or less ready for the Bambinos to come....although I knew they needed to stay inside a little longer.

We also got the first ultrasound pictures of their faces! And B took me away for a Babymoon. He surprised me with a gift made out of my two pearls! Which I wear every single day BTW.

I guess I lied. Thanksgiving weekend, I took my last trip.  In December, I was finally ready for my pregnancy to be over. I was so huge and so uncomfortable. My doctor was a little concerned with their weights so we saw a specialist. What they don't know, is shortly after these appointments, I started drinking protein shakes to add some meat onto my babies.

New Years Day I went to the hospital thinking that I might finally have my babies. I did not want them so close to my birthday!
On my birthday, I got the best news ever, and I wrote them a letter. I had a lot of concerns, especially about surgery. I worked up until the Friday before my scheduled c-section and that Monday finally, finally(!) it was time for us to get our babies!
The night before
I barely slept the night before I was so excited.

Overall, I had an almost picture-perfect pregnancy. If you actually go through and read all those posts (I don't blame you if you don't) you'll learn that I swelled up almost immediately, we're talking early like July/August-ish. Because of that, my hands were constantly falling a sleep and I had to wear one or two wrist braces so I could work and sleep at night. My blood pressure was always excellent and I was tipping the scale at 207 by the end. (I can't believe I just told you that!) At my 6 week post-op appointment, my doctor said of all the twin pregnancies he's had, mine's right up there with the best with the least amount of complications.

I am so grateful/appreciative/happy that everything turned out as well as it did. Not only was I blessed with an amazing pregnancy, I was blessed with the most adorable Bambinos.

Linking up with Jennifer this time for the MOM's link up.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday's Letters

Dear Seattle,
Thank you for this gorgeous weather. It's hard not to be in a good mood when it's this nice out.After the week I've had, I need this. Up to 80 degrees on Sunday? I''ll take it. Now if only my office had a window so I can enjoy the sunshine.

Dear Management,
How about that window? We'd have to knock walls down you say? Ok by me.

Dear Bambinos,
Stop growing up. Seriously, stop it right now. You turned 16 months yesterday and I am not ready for it.
Dear Kiki La Rue,
I wish I'd never found you. I've managed to only purchase one dress so far, but I have so much more on my wish list. You could seriously take all my monies, but I have important stuff to buy - like diapers.

Dear Pampers & Huggies,
Why does Peanut pee through you every single night no matter which one of you we use? Your 12 hour absorbancy claim is a joke.

Sincerely,
Me

What would you write Friday's letters to? 

Photobucket

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Why is it that upon going through a break up you mourn the loss even if you're the one who initiated it?

I remember breaking up with an ex and having a much tougher time getting over it than I expected.  In my heart, I knew it was the right thing to do. I remember feeling almost free at the thought of not being with this person anymore but my head did not catch up so quickly.

As I'm assuming most people do, I wondered if I made the right decision. I wondered if maybe I was being too hard on myself, on him, on our relationship? I wondered if I had tried hard enough to make it work, but mostly I wondered who I was without this person?
NYE, in happier times
After being with him for a few years, I wondered how much he had changed me. I wondered how much our relationship changed me. I wondered if and why I had let him change me at all. I liked who I was before we met, I hoped those good qualities were still inside me.


But mostly I wondered if I were still lovable and whether or not I would ever find someone who loved me as much as he did.

A breakup is like a death, one day that person is in your life and then one day they're not. You're left with the shadows of memories haunting you at every corner, every place you ever went to together, every song you both liked to dance to, and especially in your dreams.

Am I the only one who finds sleeping worse than being awake during a breakup?

Pretending to be happy
I've heard it takes three months for every one year you were together to get over someone. I thought that only worked if you were the one being broken up with, I never expected it to take me a while to get over him too.

Eventually, I stopped mourning the loss. I realized that the friends I lost during the break up were not real friends anyway. I realized I was no longer running away from places we had been;  I could visit places we had been together without questioning my decision. I hadn't forgotten the memories, but they were looked upon fondly and with confidence rather than questioning. I realized that I was still the same person as before, but I now had wisdom that I hadn't had before. I realized that I could still have love for him and be cordial without needing to be in love with him. I realized that without going through this, I would not have been as ready and willing as I was for the next great thing to come into my life, and come into my life it did. 
The very day B first texted me...he had no idea I was out in this outfit.
Several months after realizing I was over the breakup I had initiated, B came into my life and you all now how that turned out.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Let Me Reintroduce Myself


Please don't hate me.

In June of 2010 I found myself unexpectedly pregnant. Being my first pregnancy, I assumed I was bigger than I should be, but wasn't completely sure. In July, after weeks of my sister telling me I was having twins, we found out we were having twins. (I used to feel really guilty that we had twins without IVF. I also felt guilty that I could even get pregnant because I read a lot of infertility blogs.) These babies were loved from the moment I even suspected I was pregnant.



Boyfriend and I have been together since December 2008 and we've both taken to parenthood naturally and whole-heartedly. It hasn't always been an easy journey, but we would trade our fraternal boys E & E a.k.a. Peanut & Lovebug for anything in this world.

Now they're almost 16 months old (on Thursday!) and such a fun age. They're both walking, starting to say easy words - ish=fish - and let me know when their diapers are dirty.
When I was younger, I always said I wanted twins, I never knew it was an actual possibility! You know how you never realize you were missing something until you get it? That's how I feel with them. I always knew I wanted kids, but I never realized how much they would make my life complete. I am so so ecstatic to have these Bambinos and I thank God every day for them.


Linking up with Heather for a fun MOMs (Mom's of Multiples) link up

Friday, May 4, 2012

Having Twins

Did you always know you were having twins? Well....no. We found out very early, at my first ultrasound. The first people we told I was even pregnant was my mom and sister and then Boyfriend's mom, but we swore them to secrecy.
15 weeks
After we had out ultrasound, found out it was twins and I was 13 weeks along instead of  9 like I'd thought, we told everyone.

Except my dad.

I was terrified to tell my Dad. I think he's the last person we told. 

Why? Remember the scene in the movie Just Married where Brittany Murphy is sitting on the bed in her wedding dress freaking out because now her dad will know she's had sex?

That was me.


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