top ten tuesday

i just had my check up w/ my midwife last week.  aside from me losing 4 lbs. in the last month, everything else was great.  the kiddies and i got to hear the baby's heartbeat for the first time...which is such a relief for me.

i love my midwife.  well, love is a strong word, but i really, really, REAAALLLY like her.  a lot.  i suppose that's a good thing since she will be the one with you in the throws of labor and the one delivering your baby.

i've been a bit uninspired about a top ten list lately, but after a great prenatal check up i think i'll share with you...

the top 10 reasons why i ♥ my midwife (in no particular order):

1. she's honest and straight to the point while still making me feel like i'm an individual.  i appreciate that she is straight up with me and i value her opinion.

2. she treats me as a unique patient not patient #150 out 3,000.  i have never felt like a number or "just another patient" with her, even though i know she has seen many, many, many women.  an example: with this pregnancy, i got to bypass the routine blood test for my first prenatal exam (yeah...STDs?  not likely when it's the same baby daddy) and just use the lab results from my previous pregnancy (it was only 2 years ago).  apparently, this approach leads to disagreements among doctors and nurses in the OB profession who think all patients should undergo that initial blood test regardless of past history.

3. she's efficient and fast during exams, but is willing to take the time to chat when i have extra questions.  i do prefer her speediness (and i rarely have questions for her anyway), since most times i have the kids with me and like to just get in and out.

4. we share the same views in regards to childbirth topics, which i think helps in our compatibility as healthcare provider and patient.

5. obviously, she is a healthcare professional and is good as what she does, but she respects my opinions as well.  she doesn't treat me as an unknowledgeable (a.k.a. dumb) patient who has no clue what i'm talking about.  on a side note, our pediatrcian is fairly similar and i suppose that's why we like her too.

6. she is supportive in the decisions we make during pregnancy and the delivery process (as long as it's not misguided or unrealistic, of course).

7. she has her own practice (so it's just her, a nurse and the office manager), which makes the office environment seem more family-friendly and personal.

8. she's laidback and flexible, without compromising her own practice.  aaron and i like that about her, because we're the same way about many things. 

9.  she's not pushy and doesn't play the "i'm the professional here so i know what i'm talking about" card, yet she's not afraid to speak out about her opinions on certain matters.

10. she's REALLY good at what she does.  i find her extremely knowledgeable in midwifery and women's health issues (including pregnancy and childbirth).  i would get pregnant again and again just so that i can keep seeing her and having her deliver my babies. 

just joking. 

but really. i think i will really miss having her deliver my babies once we're officially "done" pro-creating (see sad face below).


new listing :: "love" cubes

they're squishy.  they're fun to snuggle with (just ask gibson). they jingle with every shake, kick and toss.

just listed at my little shop are these cotton jingle cubes. 

after making some for gibson and seeing how much he enjoyed them (and the ones fron aunt corrie), i couldn't resist making more.  perhaps other little ones will find just as much joy in these simple toys as my own son (actually, even emma has fun playing with them too).


wordless wednesday::gumball

more wordless wednesday here and here.


a tourist in cleveland

when aaron had vacation time last week, our original plan was to pile everyone in the car and take a few days to get away somewhere.  plans change.

a new fridge, new brakes and one treee removal later, we decided that vacation time was going to turn into staycation time.

so our approach for the week was to become cleveland toursists.  we operated on a low-key, take it day by day schedule similar to one we would have if we were on an actual vacation.

there was a visit to the 36th annual corn festival in north ridgeville, where we enjoyed sweet, buttery corn on the cob, corn dogs, and some other fair foods.

of course, i have already mentioned the lakewood car kulture show.
this car seats 8.  it would be perfect for our family.

there were a couple of trips to the zoo, where one of the highlights was seeing a camel poop (they are surprisingly small for an animal so large).  it was aaron's first time in the rainforest section, and gibson seemed to enjoy being able to walk around in there and getting close to look at the animals.

we spent a couple of days swimming in the pool at the middleburg heights rec. center.  i think everyone enjoyed the water time.  i know i did.

 then to wrap up the week, we visited the west side market to pick up some goodies from our usual vendors: produce from the basketeria and calabrese produce, lunchmeat and beef smokies from meister's and crepes (oh glorious crepes!) from crepes de luxe.

it has been such a nice treat to have aaron home all week.  i know the kids have really been enjoying having him around all day.  i wish it was so every week of the year! 

and now it's back to our regularly scheduled program.


still blissfully in love


it truly has been 6 years of marital bliss.  by God's grace, there is no problem we can't overcome together.  by God's grace, our relationship with one another has been easy...like we really were two pieces of a puzzle that were meant to fit (yeah, i know that's a little cheeseball).  there is no feeling of give and take or compromise in our relationship, because we have a mutual understanding of each other's needs.  maybe meeting each other's needs could be considered a compromise, but it doesn't feel like that.  and when it comes to the big picture, we function as one unit, which makes it easier for us not to sweat the small stuff.  sometimes it feels like we share the same mind (spooky!). 

since that first day we met at the coffee shop pounding espresso shots together in the early morning until today as we sit together sharing yet more coffee (big surprise, eh?) surrounded by giggles and busy chatter from our kids, i realize that i am still filled with that same giddy-as-a-school girl feeling when i think of him, much like those first days of getting to know each other.  my heart still flutters - skips.a.beat - when i see him.  i still can't get enough of him.  if i let myself, i can easily pine away the day, counting the seconds until he comes home from work.

some days i wonder how is it always this easy?  how is it possible that two people can complete each other?  how long will this blissful feeling last?  all i know is that God has graciously brought us together.  our relationship with each other is built on and modeled after Jesus, his actions, his love, his sacrifice.  he is the true head of our home and everything else just seems to fall into place. 

so hand in hand.  together.  we take on another year.




classics, hot rods, and some rockin' and rollin'

since 2006, we have yet to miss lakewood's car kulture show.  and this year's show seemed the biggest one yet.  next year, there is talk of adding another block to accommodate more cars.  we went earlier in the day, and the street was already bustling with people.

there were some old favorites from past shows, some new ones, and works-in-progress.  all cars in the show must be pre 1972, along with scooters and motorcycles.  it is pretty amazing to see the transformation done on some of these cars, and the detail work put into them (inside and out) is pretty amazing.

 we stopped at bela dubby to re-energize with cold drinks, food, and rest our legs.

then down the alley next to the shop was a small craft show hosted by cleveland craft coalition.  there were some adorable pillowcase dresses being sold (i didn't catch the artist's name) along with some fabulous vintage items by stephie lou (an artist i first came across at a craft show hosted by salty not sweet).  in case you're interested, cleveland craft coalition hosts a craft show the first saturday every month at bela dubby from 12 - 4 p.m. 

of course, like previous years, there was some excellent, live rockabilly music playing through out the car show, which i think always adds to the ambiance of the whole event.  you might have even spotted emma and gram dancing around in the street (it's too bad i didn't capture that great moment).

 and if live music wasn't enough during the car show, there was a lakewood car kulture show after party at the garage bar where you could enjoy some live tunes by heelsplitter (you don't want to miss frankenbass in action) and scoliosis jones (did i ever mention the drummer in that band is REALLY cute?).  this was the first time i had ever heard heelsplitter play and they were fantastic!  scoliosis jones followed after, with each member donning a heelsplitter t-shirt to show their love and appreciation for the band.

it was a great way to finish off a day filled with vintage automative splendor.


top ten tuesday

it's still hot out there, and i am enjoying it (though i can't speak for my husband).  this week's top ten has been put together by my other half, since my brain is still not functioning at full capacity (is this even possible with little children and a slight case of insomnia?).

top ten treats on a hot day (in no particular order):

1. a cold icee or slushee. [my most favorite is cherry.  or mixing cherry with the coke slushee.  yum!]

2. ice cream. [chocolate is by stand-by choice.  and how convenient that malley's ice cream parlor is walking distance from our house.]

3. chocolate milkshake or malt. [did i already mention that malley's is walking distance from my house?]

4. smoothies. [this is like a meal in itself, and has been a lifesaver for those extra nauseous days.]

5. ice, cold brewskie. [a beer is good for any season of the year.  you just have to have the right beer during the right season.]

6. rum and coke. [extra special when you add a marachinno cherry.]

7. mojitos. [mint mojitos are especially refreshing.  we have even made one for ty, sans the rum of course.]

8. popsicles. [classic summer favorite.]

9. frozen lemonades. [summer and lemonades just go together.]

10. frapuccinos. [okay, i'm not a big fan of starbucks. but drinking a hot cup of coffee doesn't sound very appealing when it's already 85 degrees outside.]


beyond the front porch

what happens when i have access to a fully functioning car during the day?

1. the kids and i pack a lunch and head to the zoo.

it was a nice change of scenery from our usual walks around the block or a trip to the nearby playground.  the animals we saw were quite active, and since we have a zoo pass we didn't feel pressured to see everything in one day.
the giraffes were close enough to touch.
the 3 in the back wouldn't stop bickering.

 we went through the dinosaur exhibit, which didn't turn out as fun as emma expected.  those dinosaurs were big, and looked and sounded very life-like.  after we handed our tickets, she had a change of heart about going through with the whole thing.  but after calming her down from her hysterical crying (hello, i'm the mom with the screaming, inconsolable child), i convinced her to go through the whole thing.  she didn't look at one single dinosaur, eyes firmly planted to the ground, while gibson seemed to enjoy the whole thing.
hiding behind the tall grass...ready to pounce.
emma didn't even glance at these cute babies.

 to make up for emma's negative dino experience, we stopped by the poop on scoop exhibit on our way out.  she liked that a lot and was quite fascinated with the massive size of the elephant poop.  glad to know that poop makes her smile.
doing her business...

 2. 3-4 mini grocery trips during the week turn into 1 big trip.

without a working car during the day, any grocery shopping we do is by foot (and i can only carry so much in one trip).  it has been a great way to get exercise in for all of us, but it is nice not to have to take multiple trips to the grocery in a week's time.  on the plus side, wednesday is produce pick-up day through our CSA program, and that same morning is the farmer's market just down the street from our house.  i really love the accessibility we have to locally grown, fresh produce.  i'm really going to miss those when winter comes.
our city fresh wednesday pick-up.

 3. we actually get to go to playgroup.

it's been a while since we've made it to playgroup.  at first it was a nap schedule thing, and lately it's been a car thing.  so, it was definitely a treat to get out and hang with our friends.
the squirrel and my nephew...ready for a showdown.

baby buddies - only 2 months apart.

captivated by a captive locust.

 there are some great perks to having an extra working car around, and a week with it seemed like a luxury.  however, i will say that i would still choose to walk (or bike) to destinations whenever possible.  although...this may not be as practical in the winter time.  but still do-able.


hello? is anyone still out there?

it's been a long while since my last post.  i know you can only see so much of gibson picking his nose.  well, i have to say that this pregnancy fatigue thing is wiping me out.  not to mention the loss of appetite.  most days, it seems like it takes so much energy just to get up and get the kids ready, fed and entertained (fortunately they're excellent at keeping themselves busy) that i'm spent as soon as i get time to myself.  my brain is tired.  and after getting done with regular day to day stuff, typing something up seems to take a lot of extra effort these days.

but besides feeling like a sloth and being off the internet radar, i do take advantage of the the days when i have small bursts of energy.  this past week, my sewing machine has been put to work with a few personal projects. 

1. i promised my dear daughter i'd make her a new apron after her red gingham plastic one ripped.  we went to joann's and she got to pick out her own fabric for the new apron.  it was very exciting for her, especially since she was able to provide input on how the over all appearance of the apron.

she loves the little pockets, and i think she was quite pleased with the outcome.  now she's been asking to go back to joann's to pick out more fabric "for me and mommy to make dresses together."  ummm...yeah.  i can sew, but i'm not that good.  and i don't know about this whole matching thing.  coordinating outfits, i'm okay with but matching outfits may be a little over the top.  we'll see...

 2. i made a mei tai for aaron and me to use with gibson (and future baby) using some gender neutral fabric.  of course you could always buy one (there are some great ones here and here), but at $80-100 a pop, i'd rather take the couple of days to make one of my own.  granted, i've already got a wrap and a pouch sling, but nothing that allowed my husband to wear the baby if he chooses to. the wrap would have worked with aaron if i had made the fabric long enough, but i figured the mei tai would be simpler to use for my husband rather than the wrap.  plus it gave me an excuse to try a new baby carrier.

it took a little bit of poking around the internet before i decided on a pattern i liked.  i'm a fairly novice sewer so clear, detailed, easy to follow instructions were key.  i decided to go with this pattern, with some slight changes.  instead of using 2 waist straps i used one long one that went across the bottom, making sure the length would be long enough for me and my husband to use (this is huge because i'm 5'2" and he's 6').  i liked this pattern because it had a front pocket addition, a little sleeping hood,  and the shoulder straps were nice and long (again, a key factor because of our height difference).

aaron got to do the first test run.  we even used the sleeping hood for head support since gibson ended up falling asleep. (the 2 tassles on the hood weren't done yet, but it still worked quite well).  the mei tai also seemed sturdy enough to carry emma.  of course she just hit 30 lbs. at age 4 so it may be a different situation with other 4 year olds.  i think if i make another one, i'd make some changes to the sleeping hood and maybe do a head rest instead.

 3. i finally finished up the last pillow case for our throw pillows.  quick and easy make-over for the living room.

other than some sewing madness (i only say madness because it's a bit crazy trying to find time to sew between having 2 little ones around and keeping the urge to nap all.the.time. at bay) i've been fairly preoccupied with working on our baby steps. those first 2 steps are so hard.  just when we were done with step 1 we got hit with some major expenses (tree removal, new fridge, new brakes for aaron's car) that happened within months of each other.  i'm glad we had a savings to take care of it, but now we're back to square 1.  a little frustrating to say the least.  needless to say, i've been busy researching our options so that we can get back on track to finishing the first 2 steps (that really makes my brain tired!).

so there's your recap for the week.  don't worry, i won't leave you hanging for another week.  there'll be a few more posts (hopefully) before next friday rolls around.
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