Tuesday, September 28, 2010

So Stupid Excited!

i just ordered my tap shoes...my ADULT tap shoes...and some jazz shoes. after about 13 years I am going to start dancing again...in a class...i think the last dance class i took was probably 8 years ago and we did a dance to Britney Spears' song "Toxic" so whenever that awful song came out...that was when i last danced in a class.

the last time i took a tap class was in high school....with my swing dance partner, Jason. we took exactly one class. we were...uh...not good. i think we had visions of us breaking out on the swing floor and doing a little side by side tap number ala astair and rogers...but sadly...i am no ginger and he was no fred...

but anyway - back to the class...very exciting - my old dance captain from High School...teaches an adult jazz and tap class in Orange County and is trying to get the old dance team back together in the class...how fun is that? at least i won't be alone in making an old fool out of myself...which is why i think its been 13 years...which is silly...which is why my old mature self just ordered some shoes to start finally dancing again!!!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Weekend Recap - Santa Barbara

we trekked up to Santa Barbara this weekend for the day...for me to attend a bridal shower (why has it been like 3 years since the last bridal shower?) and for Bryan and the boys to play with friends. i, unfortunately, did not get any pictures of the bridal shower...that is what happens when you take a 3 week old baby as your guest :) - but take my word for it...it was so amazing...elegant...the food and the little courtyard - gorgeous!

 i think it all makes me kinda glad that bryan and i were the first of our friends to marry because everyone's wedding and showers and parties have been so unbelievably amazing...we didnt have that pressure because we had hardly attended weddings at that point ourselves...now everyone's parties look like they came straight out of a magazine...anyway...i digress.
it was certainly nice to have some girl time. i truly cherish any adult time i can get right now - i feel like i am in a boy war zone most days...so the peace and quiet and wonderful chatter of girls felt very nice...refreshing even!

After the bridal shower we headed over to our friends' house for a BBQ...there were only these four cuties above, but it seemed like a lot more...toddlers can be very overpowering! we had so much fun and so did our boys - it makes the drive worth it!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Zoodies on the Radio!

I have been super overwhelmed by some of the feedback I have been getting on my silly Zoodies. A sweet mama - Kimberly Schlegel Whitman - who is on the Gene and Julie radio show in Dallas - bought a couple of Zoodies from me after reading the Daily Candy article and liked the idea so much, she talked about it on the radio show today!

i haven't heard the radio spot yet, but you can read her blog post here.

And isn't this little black kitty so adorable! I have been working on my Halloween Zoodies...speaking of which, order up if you are planning on getting one for Halloween - i am going to quit taking orders to make it by Halloween on the 15th or so...so be warned :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Re-Introducing the Bat Zoodie

oh goodness...i am just so mad right now...i took these pictures yesterday...i finished the zoodie during breakfast and snapped a couple quick pics before Bryson had school, thinking - Bryan will be able to take better pictures later...so i didnt let him wear it to school...even though he pleaded and begged and begged and pleaded...i didnt want him to get it dirty before we could take photos...to make a long story short...no pics were taken - bryson slept in the bat zoodie...he also slept with a bunch of BLUE silly putty...which is now all over the thing...so not sure if these are the only pics i have...

oh and did i mention he also got the BLUE nastiness all over my pillow sham...and my blanket...grrr...boys...grrr - although i am sure my mom will probably love to remind me all the millions of times i slept in gum...and i have flashbacks of the smell of de-solv-it to prove it...speaking of which...i must go and get myself about a gallon of that stuff...amazing stuff...

anyway...so bryan helped me with this one. he cut out the pattern and designed it really - i was skeptical his little idea would be functional AND look cool...but it is...and does...and bryson can put his arms all the way up - straight up - and it still works.

the wings are made of fleece (which is what the sweatshirt is made from) so it will wash and wear well too!

now to go check on the wash and see if the third washing of the sweatshirt is any better! grrrrr....these will be up in the shop soon...the only thing really holding me back is the lack of good pictures! but these may have to do :)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Paper Airplane Master

My house is now a paper airplane graveyard...there are at least 15 that i throw away (recycle) every night. bryson makes them with such fierceness...and they are all different styles too - he does like 5 different styles - i think he pretty much taught himself how to do it too...because i, for one, did not teach him that and i know for a second fact that his are better than his dad's silly "gliders". for about 3 weeks now Bryson has been perfecting his paper airplane making skills...i thought it was just a phase that would die down in a week or so...but no...still going strong...very strong...in fact...funny story...

jr. league started up last week and there was another mom at the table whose son was in Bryson's pre-school class over the summer...i told her that her son and mine were BFFs at school and she looked surprised and then said, "oh my gosh...bryson is YOUR son? he is a paper airplane GOD at our house! my son made me get a book at the library on how to make them because he wanted to make them as cool as bryson!" so apparently Bryson sends her son home with batches of airplanes too..even ones made from HUGE pieces of art paper...obsessed...i tell you...obsessed! 

he wanted to teach his friends how to do it...like they read blogs or something...but he posted his steps over at his (much neglected) blog...You can get the low down HERE.


home-made applesauce is so yum...so yummmmm....and the smell? simply autumn and wonderful!

we used the jonathan apples from Riley's Farm to make it. a lot of recipes said not to use the more tart apples for applesauce, but i loved how ours turned out (and so do my boys)

Bodie was very much into helping...can you tell? And this all must be done with a fussy baby attached to you...also very important...

so i didnt really follow a recipe, but here is what i did:

Barnes Applesauce
about 9 or 10 apples - medium sized - peeled (not perfectly since the skin has so much wonderful fiber goodness) and cored and chopped (not too finely)
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

that's it! i just put it all in the dutch oven...brought to a boil and then simmered and covered for about 45 minutes. After that i threw it all in the food processor and then canned it.

we still have some apples left and i intend to do some type of cobbler with them...we'll see how much energy i actually have tonight if that is gunna happen or not!

if any of you have any cobbler recipes you love, please share!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Riley's Farm

last year we went too late to Riley's Farm...this year i was determined to make it while the apples were still on the trees...and this weekend we were able to. a couple notes for me for next year:

1. Make sure you go to Riley's Apple Farm...not Riley's Farm (Riley's APPLE farm is one stop past Riley's Farm)...apparently they are different and Riley's Farm does NOT have the bow and arrow for Bryson to shoot...and he really wanted to shoot it BAD momma!
2. Make sure you go to Riley's Apple Farm because the apples are not a mile away for you to pick...
3. Do NOT go on a weekend...somehow make it work during the week! (which may not work since Bryson will be in Kindergarten next year...oh well)

So...we are at this awkward stage right now. Bodie is almost-but-not-quite 2 years old. that means the following: 1. he hates the stroller and 2. he is the worst follower and walker ever. i know this from taking bryson to school every day. i know this from having to run errands at the post office and bank every day. i also like being very minimalistic on outings with kids and refused to take a stroller. so i shouldnt be surprised when we get to the apple farm right around nap and lunchtime and everyone is tired, hungry and CRANKY and no one wants to trek the mile up hill to pick apples...all the while i am trying to make this so FUN and EXCITING and nursing a cranky baby in the Moby the whole while...

but somehow through it all...i looked at our *now complete* little family and started tearing up...with joyous tears...because here we were - starting our own little traditions - as a family...our family...and even though it was not easy and seamless (is anything with 3 kids ever that way?) it was us...and us feels good...we are forming our family culture right now - and although...admittedly...i am a hormonally charged postpartum-sleep-deprived mama...i am very happy...very very happy...with all my boys and everything that comes with them.

so anyway...back to the apple picking. yes...so we picked mainly jonathan type apples...which are a little like granny smith...of which i intended to make all kinds of baked goods today...of which i made exactly nothing. i better do something with them soon, though, or else we will have all kinds of rotten apples shortly. know any good pie/cobbler recipes?

bryan attempted to carry our Bodie on his shoulders...he was not so much into the hike..but he was playing with Bryan's curls so cute!

we also made 1 gallon of cider. which is pretty much the best stuff on earth...chock full of vitamin C and fiber and awesome-ness.

i love this picture of me...can you tell what my face is saying? "bodie stay out of my purse...baby please burp for me so you will stop crying and let me smile like i am not about to lose it" i am such a mom...its a little scary...

and here is our second family of 5 picture...all appled and blackberried out!

Adult Zoodies Now Available!

Bryan took Bryson to go see "Walking With the Dinosaurs" the weekend after Bobby was born and before he did, i made him this Zoodie to wear...to match Bryson's dino zoodie...

i also sent my son with business cards...shameless and exploitative...this i know...but i guess they were late, and didnt wear their hoods during the show...so sadly, no  business cards were distributed...but they loved the show and even skeptical bryson, "those aren't real dad, i see the strings" (talking about the pterodactyls) even was sold by some of the dinos, "but those ones ARE real dad...are they real dad? i think they are real, dad!"

also - my niece Katlyn loves pandas and requested a panda zoodie - actually the girl here is my other niece Hope since Katlyn was not here, but nonetheless...it is for her. Hope has a kitty and Buddy (my 10 year old nephew) has a skunk. we are a zoodie family now...i realized today that i am the only one that doesnt have one...but i will remedy that shortly! i like the idea of the quick (and comfortable) trick-or-treating outfit!

available now at zoodies.com!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Custom Zoodie Orders

So - you guys are so clever! i received so many custom orders, i am still sifting through them, but wanted to share a couple with you.

I received a request for an Angelina Ballerina Mouse in white for a sweet little girl...i dont know...i never met the girl, but how can she not be sweet in this? so cute! my first white zoodie...

i also did a mouse with pink tummy and ears - but silly me didnt take a picture before i sent it out...

i also received a request for a bunny...which i hope to make soon...

and a dino in black with red plates. speaking of the dino...the most popular dino by far was the brown with orange plates and i was shocked! partly because i had spent a good part of the month sewing the green and purple ones...but also because i had only ever had 1 order for that color combo before...

i also received numerous requests for adult sized zoodies. my friend said that it would be the perfect thing for mom and dad to wear trick-or-treating with their kids! so true...and i just so happened to have made a couple adult sized zoodies and will post them shortly!

any ideas from you about custom orders or new zoodie ideas? i would love to hear it!!

Bobby at 2 Weeks

Wow...2 weeks...i think because i haven't slept for 2 weeks it more feels like 2 months...this is our Bobby at 2 weeks.

We had a check up today with Sue and he now weighs 6 1/2 lbs - which means he has almost gained a pound in 2 weeks! which is so nice, since this boy needs to bulk up if he stands a chance against his brothers...bodie does not understand the idea of "gentle" or "nice" or "do not throw that golf ball at your brother's head" - such is a house of boys...as bryson keeps reminding me..."mom - now we have FOUR boys!" i also overheard bryson tell his daddy that this is a boy party in this house. so true...

Anyway - our sweet Bobby B. is a fat baby in a skinny baby body and nurses ALL the time...like ALL the time...like every hour on the hour...i am so going to lose this baby weight in no time...pretty stoked on that...sure i will be a walking no-sleep-zombie-mom, but i'll fit into my jeans!

he is so alert and so expressive already. i dont believe i have ever seen a newborn so alert. he seems to have a lot going on behind those big eyes of his.

also because of his teeny size, this baby is somewhat of a rock star. I can not go anywhere without a million comments...almost as annoying as when i was pregnant, but not since i agree with their comments on his cuteness...its true...but the comments about 3 boys are sorta annoying...and the recent ones i keep getting, "are they all yours?" like i have a pre-school with me or something...anyway - i am still hormonal...obviously...

to try to give you an idea of size, here he is with our dumb (but very loved) cat BBQ...

by the way, did you know BBQ has his own theme song? it goes, "BBQ, BBQ, there is no other cat as dumb as you" and there is a song...its delightful. we love you BBQ...

anyway - as you can see BBQ has quite a few pounds on Bobby, but not for long!!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

bobby's first bath

hmmm...do i like this? not sure...

he did though...he loved the water...now that his cord fell off we felt better about bathing the little guy.

and i love that R2-D2 made an appearance...of course.

bryson took this picture. he is all about the baby. he only asks about a zillion times a day if he can hold the baby or kiss the baby or smother the baby with attention.

this little guy is gunna have some big brothers that love him lots.

at one week bobby weighed 6lbs - not very surprising since he nurses like every hour...i dont mind...i want the little guy to put some meat on his little bones!

we are doing good...daily candy was awesome and people love the zoodies...i am sewing like crazy...already completed 20 orders and have lots more to go, but feeling blessed and still enjoying making them! thank you to everyone for the kind words and encouragement by the way - keeps me going!!!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

First Family of 5 Photo

my mother left yesterday...we are officially on our own...scary thought...but i am feeling on the mend and my boys are probably happy to have me back - i think being off his little schedule was turning Bodie into a bit of monster...he likes the word "no" a lot. second only to "no" is "don't". punching or throwing things usually follows too. its awesome. did i mention he is 28 pounds of solid muscle too? yeah - he is pretty difficult to pin down these days. awesome. fun times.

anyway - before she left we took some family photos and this was the only one i have of the 5 of us. bodie was over the camera...can you tell? holy crow i have been laughing hysterically at this picture - bryson's face, bodie escaping, me trying to convince him how cool a picture would be...bryan and his marvin the martian shirt. this is just classic.

Zoodies on Daily Candy!!!

My little Zoodies were featured today on Daily Candy Kids!

Isn't this so exciting? If you haven't signed up for their email subscription you should! they've got the best highlights (natch) and deals they promote and a city specific email too letting you know of stuff in your area.

if you want to be extra supportive, you can go to their Facebook page and let them know how cool you think Zoodies are!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

first adjustment

bobby and i both were adjusted today by Dr. Judd. i am such a big believer in chiropractic wellness after this pregnancy. wow! what a difference. i had been super vigilant about getting adjusted every other week and then every week toward the end. my hopes were to keep my back healthy during pregnancy and to avoid back labor like i had with both bryson and bodie. thankfully both of my goals were met thanks to Dr. Judd and Dr. Cicon at Sue's office.

when i was pregnant with bryson i threw my back out at around 6 months pregnant and having 2 kids - one of which i still carried quite a bit...and at 30 lbs...not fun on the back!

after bobby's birth my back definitely felt out of sorts and i am feeling like a new woman after today's adjustment! and we got a pic of little bobby getting his first adjustment too! he did great!

and here is a shot of an 8 month pregnant Dr. Cicon adjusting a 9 month pregnant me...our bellies all over the place! love it...

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Bobby's Birth Story

i think this labor and birth is such a sweet culmination and end to my pregnancies. we have made the decision that this will be our final babe during my pregnancy, so i knew that it was to be savored. i think my short life as mother has also taken such different twists and turns and this was a sort of acceptance of who i am and where i am as a mother. in a strange way i was also born out of this birth. there is nothing like labor that can truly dig into your sub-consciousness and force you to deal with some things. physical pain can be so powerful psychologically speaking.

so onto the labor...

so here i am...3 days past my due date. getting a little nervous because my midwife was leaving for vacation in 4 days and also being a little discouraged since i had not gone past my due date before...but still feeling really good so i couldnt complain...but i manage to...nonetheless...

my mom had just arrived on tue night. the next day we decide to take the kids to the El Dorado Nature Walk to walk around. i had a couple contractions while we were there...more serious ones than i had before, but i didnt want to start getting my hopes up. We got home and they weren't stopping, so i started timing them and they happened pretty consistently 20 minutes apart for a couple hours. I told my midwife and she suggested going on a walk, so Bryan and I started walking, when i remembered that Farmer's Market was happening not too far from our house. my mom drove the boys and met us there and we walked around and had dinner on a blanket next to the ocean and farmers market. it was such a lovely night and my contractions started getting a little closer, but i was enjoying them still because it hopefully meant we would be meeting our baby soon.

we went home and got the boys ready for bed. my contractions at this point were closer - about 10 minutes apart at around 8:00pm. I lost my plug shortly after and then the contractions really started coming...and one on top of the other...intense...i called Sue at 9:00 because i started wanting to get in the tub...which i did as soon as she arrived. Everyone else arrived shortly after that - Sue's assistants Lindsay and Tiffany and my sister, sister-in-law, niece and rashelle (my mom was here already). we all sat in the office and talked and laughed...and then got quiet during a contraction...then would start up again...poor bryan was severely outnumbered, but he did awesome...when i started transition and things got intense the mood changed but the atmosphere was so lovely. so positive. so encouraging and filled with love.

there will be forever scents and smells and songs that will remind me of this birth - leonard cohen and tuber rose candles and laughter and hands grabbing mine and the sound of me humming through contractions. bryan's strong support by me the entire time. the background of his birth.

as i was in labor i really had to dig inward to find strength to allow the contractions to come and do their work. i realized that while pregnant with bryson all i wanted was to not feel pain. i thought only of myself and did no research at all because i didn't want to feel guilty about getting an epidural. after his birth and lots of reflection, among other experiences, i decided i wanted a different experience with Bodie. still...i was scared...still...i didnt want to feel that pain. i fought against the contractions. i tightened up and tensed and tried to fight my body. when it was time to push i wanted someone to do it for me...i wanted someone to just take the pain away. 
i realized during this labor that i needed to allow it all to happen...and that it would be over more quickly...i dug down deep to find that strength. really deep...and something amazing happened. i listened to my body. i felt my body open up. i actually felt myself dilating and the baby moving down. it was so absolutely incredible. there are not words for me to adequately describe how magical our bodies are. feeling him move down made me realize i was that much closer to meeting my baby and gave me a renewed sense of energy. i could feel more pressure at this point, but still didnt feel ready to push.

with both of the other boys i had a bit of anterior lip left on my cervix before i was at 10. i pushed prematurely with both and it caused the last part to be drawn out and much more painful. i told sue this and so she checked me and i was at 9 but no lip. this was the last psychological barrier for me. then, the baby's heart rate started dropping. it got worse with each contraction. the atmosphere changed and i could tell that they were concerned. sue checked me and i was at 10 and told me i needed to push the baby out with the next contraction or else we were getting out of the tub. there was no way i was getting out of that tub, but i didnt feel the urge to push yet. i was scared, but this was so beyond me at this point. i knew what i had to do for my baby and that went beyond my fear of pain...beyond me at all. i told my sister the next day it felt like someone telling me, "okay - go ahead and cut your arm off now" and having to prep for that mentally. but somehow i dug again...found that strength to push him and his head came out with the next contraction. they told me to wait until the next contraction to deliver his body, but i was concerned about his heart rate at this point, so i pushed again and out he came into my arms. 

the joy - that he was breathing - that he was okay - that i was able to do it somehow - was overwhelming - that is what you see on my face. but holy cow! how tiny is this baby! i was so shocked. i did not expect such a tiny tiny thing. he looked like half a bodie...and practically was at 5 lbs 11 oz (Bodie was 9lbs 8oz - Bryson was 7lbs 13oz). it didnt make sense to me, but he looked so good and healthy and perfect.

this is bobby nursing for the first time. he has been so alert and nursing amazingly. he did not lose any weight either when they weighed him the next day, which was so comforting since he needs all the ounces he can get! 

we are feeling so blessed and so in love with this tiny peanut of a baby. the boys are in love too and we are so grateful for all the help we have been given. i feel like i have grown a lot through this pregnancy and labor and am so thankful for this experience. i will take these memories with me throughout my life and cherish them, for they have formed me into the woman i am, the mother i am - the powerful trans formative power of birth.

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Barnes Boys

here are some pics of the brothers meeting Bobby for the first time. actually bryson met bobby when we were still in the water, but got a little scared i think with all the commotion and chose to go back to bed. but he is in love and has asked to hold the baby approximately 524 times. bodie just wants to LOVE all over the baby and mommy and mor mor are trying to protect poor little bobby from all the LOVE...

also -  i just heard that our dear friends joel and jena had their second baby - a boy- Ezra Gray born today - 9 lbs 5 oz...and we are so excited that Bobbie has a little pseudo twin to play with! jena was due three days before me and we both went late and have been texting each other every day - it was so nice to go through this with such a dear friend...and so nice to hear he finally decided to come! love you guys~

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Introducing Bobby Rhys Barnes

born this early morning (1:38 a.m.) at home in the water. 5 lbs 11 oz and 19.5 inches long. our tiny little peanut is nursing well and super alert. we are so in love with this little guy! i can't wait to share the birth story with you - it was amazing and God is so good!