Friday, October 28, 2011

What Maternity Leave

You guys, I'm just here. I'm not quitting blogging, but I just got a full-time job (WAH) and between that and the kids (which means, GAH, breastfeeding and homeschooling and... well, let's just say I'm prioritizing). I'll try to get back in the swing of things soon. Let me just find a rhythm that will allow me some actual down time. Miss all of my blogging friends. Will visit your blogs as soon as I can. xo

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

She'll Love Him Forever, She'll Like Him for Always

Here are some really precious pictures of Marguerite and Cameron:

She had been asking (nagging) us to let her carry the baby. I'd really been planning to let her hold Cameron, but I thought it was going to be a bigger production with Mark there and with lots more pillows. In the end, I let her do it one evening at bedtime. Mark wasn't there, but she did it in bed and with my boppy pillow for support. I wanted to get her to say the "I love you forever" lines, but that's the kind of thing that would have me blubbering (and definitely no blubbering - or blinking, or breathing - while a 5-year-old is carrying the baby)

Like I said, Marguerite is very sweet to her baby brother. She loves playing with him (albeit needing to be reminded to be gentle every now and then, or not to do it when he's sleeping) and she calls him "my baby", like when the baby's crying, she'll rush into the room and demand, "What are you doing to my baby?". Of course, there have been moments when she referred to him as "that baby" too, like when he was bawling at 1am, she growled at us, "Somebody make that baby stop!"... Overall, I think her response to the change has been good.

More baby pics:

Make Practical Calls

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of TracFone for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

One of the concerns I have been mulling over that involves my children growing up is their access to gadgets. I personally am not a fan of techie stuff. For starters, they’re usually expensive, and second, they’re usually trendy with models going obsolete practically overnight. Before I launch into my usual rant about consumerism, let me just say that while I did try to stay away from cell phones for as long as I could, I had to give in because they were really practical (if you make a habit of reading crime-suspense-detective novels set pre-‘90s, you’ll know what I mean) and I had no choice; my mom gave me one.

Anyway, the question now is, when is the right age for my kids to have their own cell phones. As it is, my daughter already knows more than I do when it comes to manipulating those newfangled touch screen models. However, I think it is more about need. A 5-year-old doesn’t need it. If you, however, have kids in big school who might need to contact you to say to pick them up earlier or later or not at all since they’ve been invited to hang out at a friend’s house, or if you could park and have a little chat with their teacher, then a cell phone will certainly be useful. Something like a Tracfone, which offers the most inexpensive way to have and use a cell phone in the US, is especially practical for a family of several kids. It’s a great way to stay in touch with the entire brood and keep track of them without getting exorbitant cell phone bills. It also offers great Senior Value being one of the cheapest options available  to senior citizens. You don’t have to worry about contracts, credit checks, activation charges or cancellation fees. Coverage and connectivity are excellent (hence its slogan "Get into Everywhereness"), and you can choose phones from all the leading brands. Phone selections include simple phones for simple needs, calling and texting capabilities at less than $10.00, and great phones loaded with features like camera/video recorder, web access, app capabilities, mp3 player, and full QWERTY keyboard, priced at $29.99.

Tracfone has the following monthly plans:

• Pay online or using cards bought at a convenient retail store near you.

• For better value for money, go for 1 year service cards and receive double minutes for the life of your TracFone, and 800 minutes, all for only $119.00. Note: “Double minutes for the life of your phone” can be a separate purchase for only $19.99, but some phones include it automatically!

• You can opt for monthly plans with 200 minutes for less than $30.00, and as low as $9.99 for 50 minutes.

As for International Long Distance:

• Tracfone offers the only wireless service where your international calls cost the same price as any other call.

• You can make 60 international calls directly from your TracFone without paying extra!

• The International Neighbors program allows you to give your family and friends in Mexico or Canada a local phone number in those countries with which to reach you at your TracFone in the States.

For more information, watch the following video:

<iframe frameborder="0" width="480" height="270" src=""></iframe><br /><a href="" target="_blank">Tracfone makes it easy...</a> <i>by <a href="" target="_blank">LittleBard95</a></i>

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Whom Cameron Takes After

Don't you just love dangling prepositions? Anyway...
People who've seen Cameron say that he looks like his Ate. I seem to be capable of making only one kind of baby: THE BEAUTIFUL KIND, hee

Marguerite, about a month old                                    Cameron, a newborn

Too bad I can't find a picture of Cameron doing that exact Angelina Jolie mouth purse. And, yes, I have to admit I frequently call him Midge. I suppose that's normal.

The Goodness of Grass

I remember this episode in Dharma and Greg when Greg woke up to Dharma laying grass on their apartment floor, something that turned out to be an annual thing for her to welcome spring. There’s just something about grass that evokes a general feeling of good health and freshness. I think that was what Amanda Knox had in mind when she expressed her wish to feel the grass between her toes as soon as she got home to Seattle. Certainly grass supplies oxygen, as well as helps purify the air and lower temperature. These are just some of the grass benefits that Scotts Lawn Builder wants to impart as it launches its social media and national TVC campaign to raise awareness around the health and environmental benefits of grass. It’s called ‘Grass Is Good’ and they kicked it off on October 12 to 13 at Martin Place by laying 400sqm of grass.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cameron This, Cameron That

My mom has Cameron and Marguerite is still sleeping, so here's an incoherent blog post.

That picture is pretty old (meaning about 2 weeks old -- Cameron is turning a month old on Saturday), but that will have to do for now. His recent shots show a pretty bad case of baby acne, which will hopefully clear up in a couple of weeks. He's still gorgeous and sweet, but that baby acne is a real bummer, so I'm not sharing those pics if I can help it. That thing on his hand is a diaper. The hospital staff used that to protect his hep-lock. There were some concerns about pus in his urine and the possibility of UTI, and while we were waiting for the urine-culture-wha? results, he was put on antibiotics (I know, I know) and the hep-lock was for that. Anyway, there were tests done on me and on the baby because of his size and the pus-thing, but we're both perfectly healthy. I didn't get sick while pregnant, and my blood sugar was fine... What I do have though is a mother who comes from a family of 9-pounders. Chip was 7.11 lbs (but she was almost 2 weeks early) when she was born and I was 8.4. My mom had a C-section both times, but she's 5'5". She and her siblings were all 9+ pounds with the exception of the youngest who was only 8+ pounds. My grandmother was about 5'7" or 5'8". Btw, I'm 4'11" (either I took after my dad or all those steroids I took for asthma as a kid stunted my growth) and was 75% pregnant belly most of my third trimester. People thought I was ready to give birth on my 6th month and when I was finally full term, they thought I was having twins.

Um, and people (Mark included) who keep on saying it's easier to clean up baby boys... I really don't see how. Maybe I'm just not used to it.

I had some trouble with Cameron's name because while I do like the name, it wasn't really particularly significant to me. And if you know me, you know that things have to be significant... *eye roll* Marguerite's name is exactly what I wanted: French, from nature, the name of one of my favorite fictional characters (Marguerite Blakeney, née St. Just of The Scarlet Pimpernel)... Anyway, I've been trying to come up with reasons why the name Cameron could be significant to me, and the following are just some of the ones I can remember off the top of my head:

- I was a fan of Kirk Cameron (not!).
- My hair back in the '80s was as thick (THICKER and FRIZZIER) as that of Candace Cameron (yes, but who'd name a baby after somebody for that reason?).
- I sometimes think I might have a crush on David Cameron (jk! Okay, that's semi-true, whatever "semi-true" means. In my defense, he does give impassioned speeches...).
- I love Cameron Mackintosh musicals (absolutely gaga over Les Miz -- so this could actually be legit... which reminds me, I used to say that I'd name my son Marius just so I could say to him, "Marius, you're late" a la Enjolras, lol... And, no, no matter how much I loved Enjolras' character, I couldn't get myself to name my son after him... TOTAL SEGUE: Who else is excited over the movie version of Les Miz the musical?!?! I am flippin' excited, but I'll never forgive them if they cast UNDERWHELMING singers. NEVER!).
- Mark is a huge fan of Matt Cameron (former Soundgarden drummer, currently with Pearl Jam - definitely a fascinating drummer to watch).
- My mom is a huge fan of Cameron Mitchell of the Glee Project.

PS. If you have baby acne wisdom to share, please do so...

PPS. I know this sounds a little Catch 22, but the baby blues are in! Too many moments of weeping and thinking somebody is a real tool... lol

Friday, October 7, 2011

Marguerite's Baby

Marguerite calls her brother "my baby". Her baby used to be the baby doll we got her - Latte (the name she first suggested for the baby) -but now Latte is so clearly just a toy and Cameron is THE baby, her baby, in fact. She has been very sweet to the baby, but that's not to say that the change in our setup has not caused displays of attitude and moments of clingy behavior. We're still trying to find a new rhythm that works for everybody.

And, you should know too that this is so not the blog post I'd been composing in my head for the past week or so. It's just as well since I think the intended post was just brimming with TMIs - biological and technical stuff that includes mentions of jaundice, baby acne (for the tame parts), explosive poop, gas, engorged boobs, etc.

Anyway, here are pics I took with my phone - some bedtime (for Marguerite) bonding between the Ate (big sister) and the baby.