29 April 2009

Another great thrifting day

Yesterday, Owen and I decided that spending another day at home on a rainy, cold day would only add to the gloom, so we headed out to wander around our nearby thrift store.

We weren't looking for anything in particular, but boy, did we find some 50 cent gems.

Remember paint with water books? Why these are so hard to find anymore, I still don't understand, but this one didn't even have a single page ripped out AND it came with a coupon for a free visit to the zoo that expired in 1994.
I was pretty excited to find this blast-from-the-past Wizard of Oz sticker book, also brand new. These are the stickers that you rip out and lick (they taste like bad spearmint--can't you just taste it?) and stick inside the dotted lines. If my boys think that Dorothy is too girly, I will just do the whole book by myself.

James has become quite the little drawing machine, so he was pretty excited about this "how to draw planes, trains, and battleships" book that came as a bonus wrapped up with the sticker book. This particular thrift store often puts two or three coloring-type books in a bag for 99 cents so if you want one in the bag, you end up with a couple more.

So on a rainy day, we came home with all sorts of rainy day activities. Thrifting never disappoints.

27 April 2009

Stuck in the middle

Sunday morning I was laying in bed listening to the boys play together in their room. It was going as it usually does: older brother tells younger brother what they are playing, how he must act while playing it, and takes license to change his mind whenever he chooses. Younger brother willingly goes along with most suggestions: dying when he is told he has just been shot, trading guys when older brother decides he wants what younger has, and trying his best to come up with new ideas for play only to be told that no, they can't play like that, or that isn't how it works.

As the mother of them both, I often want to step in and tell older brother that he is being a big bully and needs to "play nicer", which in this case means take the suggestions of younger brother even when they don't seem as cool or fun. And certainly, sometimes I do just that.

But on this particular morning, I remembered that I was once the younger; most likely following the older around like she could do no wrong, doing and playing whatever she told me, thinking maybe she would like me the best if I never disagreed. Like Owen, I am also the second born in the family.

Of course, I eventually got the best of both worlds, (as Owen will) when another sister was born, and instantly I added older sister to my previous status of younger sister, and perhaps I learned the joy of bossing around a little admirer who was willing to be bossed and mostly thought I could do no wrong.

Soon enough, Owen might be looked upon with pity as the "middle child". Poor, poor middle children. But I think that being stuck in the middle might have its hidden advantages. I'm not the middle child in our family, but I am in the middle of two. This same sister born after me is the true middle (two siblings on both sides of her) and is now the most independent and opinionated of us all, taking no bossing from me, or anyone else, for that matter. Perhaps these qualities developed as a result of being in the middle?

Eventually, the aforementioned playtime ended in older brother grabbing something unneccesarily out of younger brother's hand, and younger brother tattling to me with tears in his eyes. I'm sure he has figured out that, although we don't mean to, mothers generally side with the younger when tears are involved because we know what damage the olders can really inflict when it was "just an accident".

So really, it might just be best to be older brother and younger brother all at the same time. Lucky, lucky Owen.

22 April 2009

Happy Earth Day

Happy Earth Day everyone. Here in Oregon we are lucky to be enjoying a beautiful, spring day with a perfect breeze. Thank you Earth.

I'm having a promotion all month long to promote the use of reusable shopping bags. With any purchase of canvas tote bags or reusable produce bags in my shop, you get an extra produce bag free. If you're already using reusable bags for your groceries, and want to stop using plastic for your produce as well, this might just be the time to do it.

20 April 2009

Monday Fun Find #20

A little while ago, I became the lucky owner of three of these bibs, made by SewSara. (You can see my cute bibs here). Sara is not only the talented seamstress behind the super successful Etsy shop, SewSara, but also a fellow dormie from my freshman year of college at BYU. She lived below us and we lost touch over the years, but recently reconnected through Facebook.

I love a bib that you can just slip over the baby's head, and Sara chooses such colorful, modern fabrics. Combined with her mad applique skills, this is just a great product.

Sara is celebrating her two year Etsy-versary, and is hosting a fun giveaway on her blog. Head over there for a chance to win. There are four prizes (one of them happens to be a limabeanhome special) and she is choosing the winners tonight. So be quick about it.

(P.S. Jess, one of my three bibs is heading your way for your babe. I kind of just spoiled the surprise, but I know you have been looking for bibs like this for a long time)

16 April 2009

What's in a name?

It's 3:30 in the morning, baby boy is playing wallyball with my insides, and I am wide awake with too much on my mind. I have always heard that third trimester pregnancy insomnia exists to prepare a mom for the sleepless nights that are ahead with a newborn. But seriously? What a cruel form of preparation.

I think that baby woke me up on this early morning because he is wondering, like many inquiring minds, when he will know his name. Now, I'm not a fan of "officially" naming a child in utero, calling the embryo and my belly by his name before he is born and whatnot, but this time around when it feels like we should really be settling in on one, we're not quite there yet.

Naming a child is a bit of a daunting task. A 40-week gestation is difficult enough without slapping on the added burden of choosing the perfect name, not to mention being responsible to make sure the first name flows with the last, forseeing what bad nicknames may be in the future, and wondering if the child will someday file an official name change with the government due to what he deems was a very poor choice made by his parents. (I'm exaggerating a bit here, I know that it's not THAT big of a deal, people)

For Christmas, as kind of a joke, Alisa gave me a book titled, 50,001 Best Baby Names, which, it turns out, I was actually pretty excited to receive. After reading through almost the entire thing, here are the official numbers:

50,000 to begin
-25,000 : out because they are suited for the female gender (but we sure loved some of them)
-100-200(ish) : that although we might like, are out simply due to their association with an annoying student that has come through Jeff's classroom over the past years. (For you people with non-teacher spouses, this number is much smaller and limited to annoying co-workers, roommates and acquaintances)
-50-100(ish) : out because they have already been selected by close friends or family members (not that we're against naming our children after people we like, or carrying on family names; this mostly includes cousins, etc. that are currently alive and don't want their name poached simply because we like it too)
-24,696 : out because they sound bad with Fuller, are too popular, or are just plain ridiculous.

Okay, so what do your awesome math skills tell you is left over after that complicated equation?

That would be FOUR(ish) possible names. And even a couple of those are still questionable.

I had no idea I was this picky. The psychology of why we like/hate certain names is too complicated to delve into, and, frankly, I don't really understand it, so I'll refrain from analyzing it here.

So we just can't decide. Well, I should say I can't decide--Jeff has somewhat of a more decisive opinion this time around. I'm the one dragging this whole process down.

Therefore, when the question is posed, "what are you going to name the baby?", the answer really is we don't know. It's not that we're keeping it a secret, we just don't know. (And in case you're wondering, Swampfire has remained on the short list, at Owen's insistence)

For now, Baby Boy Fuller might just be the name he comes home with (hmmm, that has a simple, organic quality to it. It can be changed to Boy Fuller, Teen Fuller, and Man Fuller as he grows up. Like calling a thing what it is--a spade is a spade is a spade).

09 April 2009

Halfway done

The baby's room is slowly getting there, and a request has been made for some "halfway done" pictures to be posted. So I'll oblige:

$25 Goodwill Glider/Rocker before and after (new foam, fabric, batting and a funny overstuffed lumbar pillow made of fabric scraps to break up the monotony of the brown)

Did I mention the other half of the baby's room is the computer room? Well, here's the bad desk we had there before, and the IKEA desk we found to put in its place. Some wall shelves have been purchased and are waiting to be installed above the computers, and I can't wait for that.

You can't really tell in that previous computer desk picture, but the walls were a mustard yellow color. Now they are this cream color with these awesome stripes (all the credit goes to Jeff for this idea and the execution thereof)

And last we have a valance hanging on the crib (full of junk), just waiting patiently for the hardware to hang it on the window, and the crib quilt waiting to be put together with its fellow bedding pieces, bumpers and crib skirt.

I am still looking for a rug, adding velcro tabs to the crib bumpers, pondering what fun items we might hang on the empty walls, and waiting to organize all the other items into the drawers and shelves. Once that's done, you all will be the first to see.

07 April 2009

Papa limabean and his blog

If you don't already read Jeff's blog, you should his most recent post about how we embarrassed ourselves at James's first soccer game on Saturday. (Eileen, you might just laugh the loudest, considering you were sitting next to us the whole time, probably being even more embarrassed for us).

Although he doesn't blog a whole lot, I love when he does. He's a funny dude.

01 April 2009

All we can do is try

This morning I woke up grumpy. The culprit? A restless night full of leg cramps, charlie horses, and hoisting my big belly from side-to-side in search of comfort. (Man, it's amazing what pregnancy can do to your body. . . but I digress).

Stumbling out to the kitchen I found myself met with multiple demands: for food, drink and more than anything, my attention to comments such as:

"Look how fast I can chew my bagel, mom"

"Elijah at school can crack his wrists like this, mom"

"Mommy, did you know that spiderman can fly by shooting his webs?"

What did I expect? This was nothing new. Anyone who spends time with young children knows that from the moment their eyes open in the morning to the time they close at night they demand presence and attention of no less than one hundred percent.

It really is easy to become resentful, to tune the children out, to wish for things such as waking up to a quiet house where breakfast is eaten in relative silence and a shower is taken without a minimum of three interuptions and fighting going on outside the door.

It is also easy to wish ourselves to a different phase of life. We look at others and think their situations are so much easier and that we would manage better if only we had their lives.

But, at the end of the day, as you've probably read in previous posts, (musings of this sort seem to be a recurring theme for me) I do have every desire to live in the moment with my young children. I really do wish to appreciate every stage the boys are in, and I want to have no regrets. I look at my friend who is about to send her oldest son to college and although she is delighted at his independence and ambition, she also finds herself heartbroken that his short time at home is over. I think of this time, 12ish years in the future for me, and get teary-eyed at the mere thought. Every time I drop James off at school, I still think he's too small to walk in that big building all alone, all day long, for heavens sake.

And so, today, again, I'll recommit to being patient, kind, and try take advantage of teaching moments. I'll try to yell less; I will sit down and play in a messy room instead of get stressed out about the toys that "should have been put away", and I'll really listen to what the boys have to say instead of just nodding and saying "mmm hmmm".

I really will try. And now I have to go. I have a date with my 3-year-old and his choo-choo track.