Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Homemade Laundry Detergent

I am on a mission to make my home more green in attempt to a) provide a healthier lifestyle for my family, and b) to save money! Some of the ways I am doing this is using cloth "unpaper" towels instead of paper towls, cloth diapering, using natural cleaners like vinegar, lemon juice, various essential oils, and other natural cleaning agents instead of harsh chemicals, and I have been making my own laundry detergent.

I was nervous about making my own detergent for a couple of reasons. I was tired of ordering my cloth diaper detergent online because it never failed, I would get myself into a situation where I was down to very little or no detergent with diaper laundry needing to be done and waiting on my shipment. It also seemed pricey to me to be buying laundry detergent for diapers and a seperate one for regular laundry. I know many people used the same name brand diaper detergent on their regular laundry, but I always seemed to hoard it for strictly cloth diaper use. I was scared to branch out and make my own because I was scared of causing buildup and subsequent repelling issued in the diapers, and I was worried that they would not get the diapers completely cleen. After hours upon hours of researching various recipes, I settled on an easy one and I have not turned back since.

2 Cups Washing Soda (not baking soda - WASHING soda)
2 Cups Borax
2 Cups Oxy Cleaner

Mix all ingredients into your container very well. Shake it around to make sure everything is all mixed up. I repurposed a container that held dishwasher tablets to hold the detergent and it works great. The first time I used a generic Oxy cleaner from Kroger in order to save money, but I have since splurged on the brand name Oxy Clean Free and I have been using that instead. I have never had buildup or repelling issues, and my laundry comes out fresh and clean every single time! YAY!

Friday, March 11, 2011

What? Free Time?

Ahhhh......Christina Marie is taking some quiet time/nap time in her room. I just finished picking up downstairs and now I can't believe this, but I actually have some free time! This almost never happens and I intend to take full advantage of it today.

Life is......WONDERFUL! The sun is shining bright these days and I am so happy and content with where things are going. I am keeping busy sewing for Cotton Cheeks, working out at the Y, and of course being mommy to my gorgeous angel, and wife to my amazing husband.

Christina is growing like a weed! I find myself trying to memorize every moment with her. It's incredible how fast time flies when you have a child and I don't want to forget anything. It's crazy how she can be so much like her daddy one minute, and then a little version of me the next. Her favorite past times these days are playing with her dogs, playing on her Leap Frog laptop, running around in her birthday suit, speaking baby babble, parks, playing in the water hose and sprinkler, chasing cats, pointing out air planes, and playing in her new play house her Daddy got her.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Love Lives Here Entry

I know I have not kept up with this blog. I had all good intentions when I started and I figured that since I was going to be SAHM I would have all the time in the world to keep this thing updated. I had all these visions of having a record of Christina Marie's daily activities, firsts, funnies, not so funnies, the works. Needless to say, I have not kept up with this thing. Heck, most days I'm doing good to run a brush through my hair and put some make up on. Man oh man the life of a SAHM is certainly NOT uneventful, that's for sure.

So what brings me back to the blogging world? I am entering in for a chance to win a Zookies cloth diaper cover. Christina is a cloth baby - has been since she was a newborn, and I must say it is one of the best decisions Sam and I have made for her. Not only is cloth a heathier, more affordable option, but it's just so darn cute! There are so many options for cloth diapering - pockets, all in ones (AIO), fitteds, all in twos (AI2), and of course flats or prefolds with covers.

When Christina was a newborn, we stuck with prefolds and covers. It was an economical way for us to start CDing and allowed us to build or stash with more expensive options over time. Prefolds were perfect for containing mommy milk poo, and I could always get the perfect fit on her. As she became more mobile, I branched out into other options. Pockets and fitteds quickly became my favorites, and the prefolds got pushed aside. I actually never sized up in prefolds, but I picked up some preloved ones at a local consignment shop in Old Katy, The Children's Carousel, and I have once again found the prefold love. I am able to use the AI2 shells I have been making as covers for these prefolds and her fitteds (also mommy made), and I have two other PUL covers, but I would love love love to try the Zookies covers! The prints are adorable, plus they snap, which is always a plus for little ones who like to take off hook and loop dypes. The fact that Hillary from Love Lives Here gave such a wonderful review of the product makes me so excited to have the opportunity to try it out on Christina Marie. So, here's to crossing my fingers that we win!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

One Year Ago Today

I can't believe that one year ago today I found out that my life would never be the same. One year ago today I found out I was going to be a mommy. It's amazing how fast the time has gone. My baby girl is five months old now and I as hard as I try, I just can not imagine my life without her in it.

I remember a conversation I had with a co-worker when I was pregnant about the fear I had of losing my identity by becoming a mother. At the time I felt that who I was then was who I wanted to be, and I was terrified of someone changing that. Looking back now, I see that I was really just scared of the new role I would be taking on, and understandably so. Five months later, I have settled into my new role as a mother and I see that I have changed in more ways than I can count, and I couldn't be happier. I truly feel that being a mother has made me a better person. Here I have this perfect, pure, and completely innocent little person counting on me to be the best person I can be so that I can raise her in the best possible way. Christina makes me want to be a better person, and I am so thankful to her for that. When I think about who I am, I am a mother first and foremost, a wife, a daughter, a sister. I embrace my new identity and I see now that this is the best thing that could have ever happened to me.

I am so amazed at how my little girl has opened my eyes to a love I never imagined existed. I truly believe that a person has no idea what true love is until they first lay eyes on their child. I had a conversation with my mom and sister not long ago about this very thing. My mom asked me to describe the love I have for Christina, and I told her that when I tell Christina how much I love her, I always tell her: "My love for you is higher than the highest mountain, deeper than the depths of the ocean, more than the sand in the Sahara." I told her that even that doesn't come close to describing how I love her. Just thinking about how much I love her I started to cry and I just said "It's just too much." There are no words to even begin to describe the love a mother has for her child, and there is no way you could even begin to explain the feeling to someone unless they have experienced it themselves. I look at her and she takes my breath away. My heart skips a beat when I see her smile. There is something special about my baby girl. I know every mother feels that way, but there is something really special about Christina. She is such a kind soul and I just have a feeling about her.

Sam and I have discussed the possibilty of trying for another baby in the near future. We go back and forth and only time will tell. I would love to give Christina a baby brother or sister, but she is a miracle and I almost feel gready by wanting another baby. Sam feels like we dodged a bullet and he is scared that if we have another baby, that we might not be so lucky. I think at the end of the day, at this point in time, I am content with where we are now. If Christina is my one and only then I am fine with that and I am so grateful for her.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Another New Year

Well, here we are in 2010! Last year flew by so quickly that it seems like a blur. We brought in the new year pretty low key, but then that's how we always bring in the new year. Christy and her family came over to cook out fajitas and pop firecrackers. The baby was asleep before they got here, but woke up when the fireworks started going off. I was happy to see that she was amazed by the fireworks, but then it all went wrong for her. Poor baby Christina became terrified by them. There was no calming her down, and she just didn't seem to want anything to do with me. It hurt my feelings when Sam came in and took over and she just seemed to burrow into him. It's so funny how if she has a choice between the two of us, the girl will choose her daddy every time. Sam ended up having to lay down with her to keep her calm. He said that every time a firework would go off she would shake and burrow in as far as she could into him. After Christy and her family left, I went upstairs to find the two of them all nestled in the bed. It was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen - one that I will never forget. My entire world was right there sleeping on my bed. In the end, Sam brought in the new year with our angel and I brought in the new year with my Medela pump sucking the hell out of my breasts. Nice.

I woke up this morning to my darling hubby bringing me a nice tall cup of coffee. How on earth did I ever get so lucky? I couldn't believe it when he told me it was 9:45! I haven't slept that late since before Christina was born!
Christina seems to be going through a growth spurt these days. She's eating more often and her sleeping patterns are out of whack. She has been staring at Sam and I when we eat and smacks her lips the entire time. It's really one of the cutest things I have ever seen. After going back and forth, I finally decided that she could bring in the new year with her first taste of oatmeal. My initial plan was to avoid introducing any type of solids for her first year and only give breast milk during that time. Lately though I am seeing that the girl needs more than just breast milk, so I started entertaining the idea of solids. I wanted to start her on avacados since they are loaded with good healthy fats, plus they are smooshy anyway, but her pediatritian's website says to hold off on veggies until about six months. They recommeded rice cereal, but I decided to go with oatmeal. We fed her with a spoon this morning and she seemed to really enjoy it. I'll have to play around with the consistency of the oatmeal a little bit, but we'll get it down. It was adorabel to hear her slerp it up from the spoon. Absolutely precious! I can't believe my little girl is already four months! Where on earth does the time go?

I never make new year's resolutions because I think they are silly anyway, however, my one and only resolution is to be the absolute best mother to this little miracle of mine. She deserves only the very best, and while I'm not the very best by any stretch of the imagination, I love her with my entire heart and soul and I think that's a good start. It's amazing to me how I hoped and prayed for her for eight long years. Every new year that would come was another year that I didn't have the baby I dreamed of, and each year I would hope that it would be the year that she would come. Here I am now with my miracle sleeping soundly in the next room and it's even better than I ever imagined.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Over The River And Through The Woods To Grandmother's House We Go

The plan for today is to take Christina to Conroe to visit Grandma and Grandpa. They are going to be putting out their Christmas decorations today and I thought it would be nice for them to enjoy time with Christina too, since she is the one who is bringing the magic of Christmas back. There's something about children and Christmas that makes it extra special. I know she's not aware of what's going on this year, but we are and we are so excited!

We took Christina to see Santa at Katy Mills Mall a few weeks ago. I kept going back and forth about taking her because I was freaked out about all the kids that would be there and of Santa himself. To be more specific, I wasn't freaked about by the kids and Santa, I was freaked out about all the germs everyone is carrying. I read somewhere that H1N1 lives on surfaces (Santa's beard) for up to eight hours. Sam had the day off when we went, and our strategy was to be the first in line so she wouldn't have to be in line with a lot of people. We got there and there was only one person in front of us so it worked out nicely. We got great pictures of our precious girl, and Sam and I were so excited.

Thanksgiving was spent at my parent's house and we had a nice time. My dad worked on Thanksgiving day, so we had our meal at dinner time which was different for us. We took Christina's bumbo with us and put it on a chair at the table so she could hang out with us.

Surprising enough, it snowed here on Friday! More like sleet really, but there were good snow flurries coming down. The ground was not cold enough for it to stick of course, but it was beautiful to watch anyway. It reminded Sam and I of Colorado so of course now we have the itch to go back. We moved back to Texas with the intention of one day going back to Colorado, but he got his job with Chevron here after he got out of college, then I graduated and got a job here, so we stayed. Now of course we have Christina and I just can't stand the thought of taking her far from my family. Everything changes when you have a family and I'm ok with that. It's not about just us and what we want, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

The excitement of the snow really got Sam into the Christmas spirit, so we got our tree and set it up. We had initially planned to set it up on my birthday, but it was just the right time so we did it. Of course, it's beautiful!

Christina and I have joined a playgroup through and we will be having our first meetup tomorrow at the zoo. The weather is supposed to be nice and we are really looking forward to meeting everyone and making new friends. Christina is of course too young to know what's going on, but I'm looking forward to the adult interaction. There are two other babies around Christina's age so that will be nice for her to have little ones to play with. It's a brand new group so I'm glad I don't have to worry about trying to fit in to an established group.

Pictures to come tonight after Miss Christina is in bed.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009