Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Week 9 Weigh-In or Sorry It's So Late, I've Been Tired

I thought I had lucked out when E starting sleeping through the night at 8 weeks, I reveled in the gloriousness of a full nights sleep, but he was only lulling me into a false sense of security. Last week we hit the wonders of sleep regression, which is common for babies his age, but it is hitting me hard. He was up at least twice a night wanting to be fed and no amount of calming would work, it was boob or bust. I shouldn't complain, at least he was sleeping a few hours at a stretch and napping some during the day. I know it could have been a lot worse, but it has been rough none the less. The only benefit to this sleep regression mixed with a growth spurt is that he has been nursing a ton, which has aided me this week in my weight loss. I ran twice and worked out with Jillian twice but other than that I pretty much did nothing but nurse and read e-books on my iPad. E gets total credit for my weight loss this week, so yeah for hungry babies!

So as I am writing this I realize that I took my weekly scale picture with Joe's phone and not mine (this is because my phone spent Friday night and Saturday morning at Target because I left it on the counter at customer service because of the aforementioned lack of sleep) I will add this picture later but it was 166.6. Now other than the slightly creepiness of having a weight that includes 666, I am very happy. A 2.4 pound loss on a week that didn't involve a whole lot exercise on my part is pretty awesome. I can see some of the weight loss when I look in the mirror but my mommy tummy doesn't seem to be making any effort to shrink as I had requested. I'm going to have to focus on core stuff and find a new workout regime along with my running because I need a boost in the toning department. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I have one last day of Couch to 5K to go, though I should have been done last week (see excuse above) but my times have gotten better, especially for treadmill running. I'm going to try to go to the gym tonight and finish up C25K in style and try to figure out what my next step will be.

In other news we went on our family staycation at the Great Wolf Lodge on Sunday and Monday. I kinda of pushed Joe into it and told him we needed some kind of getaway since we weren't going anywhere else this summer. Our GWL is only about 45 minutes away in Grapevine, TX so travel wise its perfect and I knew with all of us being so pasty (or as Joe would save, cave dwellers) an indoor water park would be perfect for us. If you haven't been and you have the chance go. It's a bit expensive per night but if you factor in the cost of the room, 4 water park passes for 2 days (you get to use them the day you check in and the whole day after you check out) plus the convenience of everything being really centrally located, it's actually not terrible price wise. None of us, except maybe E, wanted to leave and we wish we had added on an extra day. We will definitely be going back, and K has yet to stop talking about it since we got home. I have a few posts to write this week (depending on E's nap schedule) so I'll leave you with some pictures from this week.
 Best time so far on the treadmill with 30 minutes of running
 4 people for one night 45 minutes from home, can you say overpacked?

 Playing in the kids area
 She loved the wave pool
 Family picture at dinner
 Daddy's turn in the wave pool
The face of a child who didn't want to leave

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Dawn Stain Removing Challenge

I'm sure you all have seen the pins stating that Dawn and hydrogen peroxide are absolute best clothing stain removers on the planet. I knew at some point I would have to test this one, since I have 3 great stain creators living in my house. I usually don't buy Dawn, only because I'm cheap, but it was .99 at Walgreen's last week so I thought this could be the week I give it a shot.

The instructions are pretty simple, mix 1/4 cup Dawn to 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide in a container or spray bottle, scrub (or spray) the mix onto the stain, let set overnight, and wash as normal. Different bloggers have done this challenge with a multitude of different types of stains, but I had seen in a few pins the claim that this mix could eradicate old nasty pit stains from undershirts and I just happened to have that type of undershirt sitting in my laundry basket. Also, having a 3 month old means have an occasional poop-splosion stain to deal with. I am apologizing upfront for you having to look at my husband's pit stained t-shirt and a poop stained onesie of my son's.

In goes the peroxide (1/2 cup)

Dawn pouring action shot

Nasty pit stain

Small poop-splosion

Different pins go about this part differently, some saw put it in a spray bottle and spray in on, some saw scrub it. I chose to scrub them to hopefully get the best results

The Results: After scrubbing I let them sit overnight and washed them with a small load on a perm press cycle using All Free and Clear as my detergent. Here is what I found

The mixture most definitely got out the poop stain, there was not a trace to be found. This was a fresh stain and I have yet to try this on a set in stain (but I will). On the pit stain, I will say there is noticeable difference in the stain but it is not gone (it is kind of hard to tell in the picture). These stains are old and set in and I think other than a bleach, there probably wouldn't be anything else that would get these stains out. I think this is a great stain removing idea and much cheaper than buying Shout or the other spray stain removers. I wouldn't tout it as a miracle remover but it is a cheap and effective stain remover to keep around the house. I will probably put what I have left in a spray bottle and keep it in my laundry room cupboards, but I will probably still scrub at it after I spray. I dare you to try this on your next stains and see if it works and let me know. I'm sure there are stains it has no effect on and I would like to know what it works on and what it doesn't, or if you have an even better stain remover that Pinterest hasn't heard about yet.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Week 8 Weigh-In, Week in Review, and Goodbye 170's!

This post is going to be short, mainly because not much happened last week. I started to feel crappy on Sunday with the same sore throat and sinus drainage I had a few weeks ago. This also coincided with the 3 days of rain we got here in North Texas which is uncharacteristic for Texas in mid July. I have decided that I must be allergic to something the rain brings in because every time in rains down here my sinuses decided to go all Niagara Falls. Sufficed to say I felt like crap and that made running, working out, and generally functioning difficult. I managed a treadmill run at the Y on Monday and Saturday and now am a day behind on Couch to 5K. I ate ok this week but that had more to do with feeling bad and not being hungry than anything else. I had a huge fear of backtracking when stepping on the scale because I had barely worked out at all. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw this on the scale Saturday morning.
That makes a pound for the week, and with the way this week was I consider that a huge victory. Couch to 5K started me on 28 minutes runs and both of them so far have killed me. It might be because I HATE treadmill running and I will be happy when I can run outside this week (unless its ridiculosly hot, then its back to the dreadmill with me). I am extremely happy to be out of the 170's and I hope I never see them again! I want to keep running but I am starting to get bored with my workout routine in general. I am thinking of trying one of those 30 day challenges I see all over Pinterest but I haven't decided which. Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. I did find a body wrap package on Groupon but I haven't had a chance to call and schedule my appointment, so I will definitely be reporting on that soon. A few good things did happen this week so I'll leave you with those.
 My best Couch to 5K yet, 5 minute warm up, 28 minute run, 5 minute cool down
 Pool party with friends
Waiting for fireworks over Lake Grapevine
 Great fireworks and K was totally cool with them, big improvement from last year
Helping Mommy make blueberry pancakes for brunch
 E turned 3 months old on Sunday, he also rolled over from back to belly on Saturday morning

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Up-cycled Baby Bibs or Another Reason I Need a Sewing Machine

I am learning to sew, and at the moment I am terrible at it. I have a wonderful friend who has come over with her sewing machine to show me the basics and I have the general concept but the detailed stuff still throws me. This is the same friend that did most of the work on E's awesome superhero rag quilt (see that project here), and she was kind enough to come over for another lesson in our attempt to make baby bibs from Goodwill t-shirts and terry cloth. We had both pinned a few different blog posts about making baby bibs, and ended up using the template from I had two superhero t-shirts I picked up from Goodwill and an old hooded towel of K's. The hooded towel worked great because it was fairly thin terry cloth which was much easier to sew.
 The beginning was fairly easy, make a good fold and have good fabric scissors or a fabric rollie blade (not sure if that is the official name for it). We did the same thing on the t-shirt, but that was much more difficult as we had to find a good place to position the template to maximize superhero coverage. Unfortunately, Captain America didn't make the cut on the first bib and only Thor's arm made it into the second bib.

 We the proceeded to put both pieces face to face and "pinned the hell out of it". Working with t-shirt material can be a pain because once it's cut it wants to curl and keeping in flat can be a chore. Then you start sewing about 1/4 inch from the edge. Leave a section un-stitched so you can pull it inside out and then top stitch. I bought fasteners from Walmart for around 3 bucks and they came in a pack of ten. Hammer those bad boys in and BAM you have a up-cycled baby bib. You can use Velcro but in my experience the bibs with Velcro get pulled off much easier by feisty baby hands than the ones with snaps.

Our adorable model showing off his new bib

 As you can see we had to sacrifice Thor but Captain America does make an appearance in this one. I attempted to sew this one and failed miserably around the curves at the top of the bib. I can sew a straight line pretty well and could probably rock out some pillows, but these were hard. My friend fixed my mistakes and all and all it came out really well.
The third one my friend made out of some fabric she had and the back of the grey t-shirt we used for the first bib. She used a zig-zag stitch and minky fabric (both way out of my realm of abilities) and it turned out super cute too. This is a great project and super eco-friendly. My two bibs around 2.50 a piece for material (mind you I used a towel I already owned). It did take around 4 hours to finish them all but it was the first time we had done them and we were keeping an eye on both kiddos. Once I get a better handle on sewing curves (and maybe my own sewing machine) I will definitely make more of these. I might also start making square bibs instead, we'll have to see.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Summer Bucket List Update 7/14/13

Well we have been slowly chipping away at our summer bucket list and it has been harder than I expected to get everything done. Trying to balance infant sleep schedules and the husband's work schedule has made it a bit of challenge. I love the idea of a "bucket" check list, it gives you ideas of things to do when the "I'm bored's" start popping up but it does add a level of stress I wasn't expecting. It might have something to do with my perfectionist nature that I want to do EVERYTHING before summer is over and trying to fit it in is making me a little anxious (I realize of course that anxiety was NOT the goal of this endeavor). I'm trying to relax and enjoy the time with the kids, making memories that I hope my daughter will remember. Here is what we have gotten done so far...
#2, #11, and #15 Run in the Sprinklers, Water Balloon Target Practice, Ice Cream Sundae Party
We had friends and their kids over last Sunday for brunch and I planned a little splash day in the backyard. Joe built a kid wash out of PVC a while ago and the girls ran in that, we threw water balloons at targets I drew on the fence with chalk and we made sponge balls (and idea I stole from my sister) and the girls threw those at each other (and us). When they were finished playing outside we made ice cream sundaes for everybody (I realize as I'm typing this I forgot to cross that one out on the other image). They had a great time and we will definitely do that again. Three bucket list numbers checked off in one day, I guess I'm nothing if not efficient.

 #4 Swimming
We actually accomplished this one twice so far. On the 4th of July we went swimming at a friend's house. We took E in the water for the first time, and as expected he wasn't a fan. K loved it of course and we could tell her swimming lessons were paying off. This Saturday we went to Joe's Aunt's house to celebrate her birthday and K went swimming with Joe's 11 year old cousin. We kept E out of the water this time but I think he might have liked it better as the water was hovering around 85 degrees.

#30 Go to the trampoline park
When we found out they were opening a trampoline park near us we were very excited. We had been to one in Southlake but it's a minimum 45 minute drive for us, so we had only been the one time. These things are great, you pay by the hour and your kid can jump like crazy in a safe padded environment. It wears them out and for $8 an hour it is totally worth it. If you live in Fort Worth and haven't been to the Flight Deck (off of Cherry in west Fort Worth)  yet I totally recommend it especially for us westsiders, so we don't have to drive all the way to Keller or Southlake to take our kids jumping. K and our friends daughter had a blast and were both tired and ready for lunch after their hour of jumping.

#40 Indoor Bowling
I had seen this on Pinterest and thought it looked like an easy indoor activity that K would really enjoy. We saved water bottles for about a week and and used a small rubber ball K had as our bowling ball. The pin showed rocks at the bottom of the bottles but I decided to help K out knocking them down we would just leave them empty. We played for at least an hour and K really liked it, she even set the pins up in other shapes and tried to knock them down too. This is super easy and fun and I recommend trying it out (especially on rainy days).

#44 Make Sun Catchers with Pony Beads
Way back last year I did a blog entry about making sun catchers with pony beads (you can check it out here). I wanted to do that again but with a few changes. One change being this time I would use the clear colored pony beads instead of the solid ones (we ended up using a mix of both) and I would use metal cookie cutters to make my shapes instead of just making round disks. We used a set of woodland creature cookie cutters I got at IKEA for our shapes and we ended up with a wonderful set of sun catchers in the shape of a moose, squirrel, fox, snail, hedgehog, and bear.
Love the multitasking she's doing!

They came out great and easily popped out of the cutters. The smell wasn't great but it went away pretty quickly after they came out of the oven (400 degrees for 20 minutes). I'm going to have Joe drill a small hole in them and maybe turn them into ornaments. I think K and I will do this again around Christmas time and send them to people as ornament presents. My biggest tip is to make sure each bead in laid down flat and you try your best to only have a single layer of beads. A few of our creatures have rough edges because I wasn't so careful doing quality control after K put in the beads.

Well that's it for now, we have a few more planned this week and a few I might try if we have the time. I'll update when we have crossed off a few more on our list.