Friday, February 1, 2013

Happy Release Day!

I was a little tired this morning from the baby keeping me up last night but the one positive thing to her 4am wakeup was the chance to be one of the first to view the new Spring Collection "Good Hart" from Matilda Jane!  Today is release #1 for spring and with all the sneak peaks floating around it was almost like Christmas morning!  I didn't know when they were going to upload all the "pretties" onto their website but was hoping it would be sometime in the middle of the night.  I checked at 12:30am when the baby woke me up for the 2nd time :( and there was still no Good Hart to be found.  Then at 4:30am I was in luck... well not lucky that the baby woke me up but lucky to see the collection in all of it's pastel purple, pink with a hint of navy glory!  LOVE!

It's too bad that I LOVE it all as my bank account can only handle so much.  For each release I give myself a budget and for this release... I went a little over :) Shh, don't tell.

For those of you not familiar with Matilda Jane I can't even begin to explain the entire culture behind this unique clothing company.  This blog post helps a little Whimsy & Style Photography. Matilda Jane Addicts have a whole language all their own.  I was first introduced into this world by a friend who hosted a trunk show.  It was Spring of 2011 and Max was almost 1. My friend invited me knowing I had a boy and that it's mostly girl clothes but when she mentioned that their are also adult women pieces I thought it would be fun to check it out.  I ended up buying a pair of black skinny pants and an amazing tank dress.  The dress is one of my favorites and I've been told many times that it's one of the cutest things I own.

Flash forward a year or so and I was pregnant for the second time.  My other friend invited me again to a Matilda Jane Trunk show the day after I was going in to have my ultrasound done for baby #2.  I told her if it was a girl, I would come.  Lucky me, it was!  I remember browsing through all the beautiful and unique clothes on the rack excited to be able to buy some but also overwhelmed with where to start so I asked the trunk keeper (the person who does the shows).  "What size do you think I should get in this?" I said as I held up the most adorable red peasant top.  She replied "what size is your daughter?" I pointed to my stomach and said "she's in here!" We both got a good laugh out of that but I left that trunk show hooked and never looked back.  Here is the silly thing... the smallest size they had available was a 12 month! so yes, Maci has yet to wear ANY of her Matilda Jane and it's piling up in my closet. (don't judge me) :)

I like to consider myself a collector.  Some people collect dolls, nutcrackers, plates...etc.  I collect beautiful unique girl clothes.  See when you think of it that way it's not as bad... right? :)

So now that Maci is ALMOST old enough to actually WEAR some of my "collection" I'm hosting my own trunk show in March! Yippie!  For those of you that have little girls you MUST come and at least see these beautiful pieces in person.  They are completely different IRL (In Real Life- Matilda Jane speak).  For real, they are so adorbs!!!  For those of you that can't make it but want to check out what they have visit and view the Good Hart collection.  Please keep in mind you can only order through a trunk keeper and sometimes items sell-out immediately.  Finally, for those of you that don't live nearby or can't make it but would like to place an order for my show I'm collecting phone/email orders up until the start of my show so feel free to email me with your "wish list" and call with your credit card info and I will ship it to you!

My show is Saturday, March 2nd at 10am. Additional information to follow. The day before that (March 1st) is release #2 so there will be BRAND NEW items being added to the collection!!  Whoo hoo! Another Christmas morning for me :)

Here are SOME of the items I have been "hoarding"... I won't show them all as it's a little embarrassing. (Yes those are 12m Royals which I hear are becoming unicorns! more MJ talk)

Thank you Matilda Jane for fueling my fun and love for clothing!  Also, shout out to MJC Lookbooks, thank you Bridgette for all that you do.  If it wasn't for you I would still be trying to figure this whole crazy world out on my own.  I check your "MJ Bible" multiple times a day and was so excited when I finally got accepted as a friend!  Thank you to my Trunk Keeper, Jessica, you totally rock and I appreciate the hard work you put into getting us our pretties... especially the holiday items! Finally, thank you to my friend Jen for all that you do as well and for getting me hooked on this adorable company!

Don't even get me started on Platinum...that's a whole different post. ;)

I'm giving away this Platinum Joey Bag at my show.  Details to come!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Dear future Margaret,

I cannot believe how long it's been since I last blogged... oh wait, yes I can! The last 6 months of being a mom to 2 kids has been just what everyone told me it would be... challenging. Day by day I do believe I'm getting better at this though and in another 2-3 years maybe I'll be crazy enough to have another one.  That brings me to the blog post that was never completed (probably due to someone crying) but was partially written a few months back when I was about 2 months into this ordeal.  I feel that the future Margaret needs to see it so here it is...

Dear Margaret,
DO NOT HAVE ANYMORE KIDS! This is hard.  You are exhausted!  The baby cries... a lot.  Here is your typical night... You come home from work at 5:45pm after picking up the kids from daycare only to pray that the baby will go to sleep so you can make dinner.  That prayer is seldom answered so you end up sticking her in her bouncer in the kitchen so she can scream bloody murder while you attempt to throw something together to eat.  Wait where is Max in all this?  Oh right, he's with the babysitter, a.k.a the television.  All at the same time the baby needs to eat, Max needs a new TV show and dinner is ready so you feed the baby while changing the channel and run over to take the whatever out of the oven/off the stove.

Luke comes home from work/hockey practice and grabs dinner while you carry the baby around and put together Max's plate (which typically consists of almost nothing you made for you and Luke so you are making another dinner while juggling the baby).  You try to put the baby to sleep in your room so you can sit down to eat.  She seems content so you walk out to the dinning room as quiet as possible.  You grab a plate and sit down to eat.  Luke shouts across the table "MAX! HOW WAS YOUR DAY!" Baby's now crying and your still hungry.  Sh*#t!  You shush everyone (as usual) and roll your eyes as you go back into the bedroom to quiet the baby.  She seems content so you sneak back out to the dinning room to try and eat again.  You take a few quick bites only to be interrupted again by a crying baby.  You again roll your eyes get up and go into the room to try and quiet her.  She finally seems to be content again so you sneak out into the dinning room and find Max has thrown all of his food on the floor/rubbed it through his hair.  He's mid toss when you run over and intercept the food while whispering NO!.  You softly scold him for throwing his food and ask if he's done.  He is so you clean him up and set him free from the table.  Wait, where is Luke in all this?  Oh right, he's with the babysitter, the television.  Luke is done eating so he's laying on the couch watching TV and you attempt to sit down and finally finish your dinner.
Sharing the TV for once :)

Max tells Luke he wants to watch his show and Luke says no he's watching a show so they begin arguing and... the baby starts crying!  You roll your eyes, get up from the table SHUSH EVERYONE AGAIN and sneak into the bedroom to quiet the baby.  By the time you get back out into the living room, it's trashed, Luke is still laying on the couch and your dinner is cold.  You decide to not finish your food but instead get a head start on dishes, making your lunch and packing the diaper bag for the next day.  You would think that after not being able to eat your food you would have lost the baby weight like last time but this time it's fighting to stick with you.  You still can't fit into any normal clothes and are starting to wonder if you will need to buy a whole new wardrobe.

After the dishes are done you get Max into the tub for a bath and while you are attempting to relax for a few minutes with a magazine you hear the baby begin crying in the bedroom.  This time you let her scream like crazy because you can't leave Max in the tub.  You look back to your magazine but are brought back to reality again by an entire large cup of water being pored over the side of the tub and onto the bathroom floor, soaking your feet, pants and bath rug in the process.  The mix of screaming baby, wet feet and husband laying on the couch sends you over the edge... you take a deep breath.  Take away the cup, causing your 2 year old to begin a screaming contest with the baby.  You want to join in but you are the adult here... right?!

Max and Luke both finally go to bed but you and the baby are up feeding, changing, burping... 1-2 hours later you finally get her back to sleep and you are out cold.  1 hour later, Max is up crying.  Luke doesn't hear a thing so you climb out of bed (very quietly so you don't wake the baby) go check on Max come back to bed and you are off to sleep again.  1-2 hours later you are up again with the baby feeding, changing burping... 1 hour later she's back asleep and so are you.  1-2 hours later Max is up again... do you see a pattern here?  You alarm goes off at 6am and you are so delirious you aren't sure where the noise is coming from.  You snooze it without realizing... but the noise woke up the baby so you are up.

Thank God for Coffee.
To follow-up 4 months later.  This has gotten better.  Now Luke gives Max his bath while you do the dishes.  They still argue over the TV.  The baby doesn't cry as much thanks to Dr. Ben at Blue River Chiropractic.  You are beginning to fit into your clothes again.  Some nights the kids sleep better than others.  You still thank God for Coffee every morning :)

Margaret January 2013

All mommy wants is a Silent Night :)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Arrival of My Little Drama Queen {Baby Girl}

Sunday, August 5th at 2:58pm we welcomed our little girl Maci into the world.  I thought my water breaking at the hair salon with our son was an interesting birth story... little did I know this girl was about to one up her brother in a big way.

My due date was Friday, August 3rd so by Saturday morning, one day overdue, I was starting to feel anxious for her to get here.  That morning I began to have more painful contractions but they weren't very regular so Luke, Max and I went and had lunch and did some shopping.  When we got home I needed to rest as the contractions were getting pretty uncomfortable but after laying down and timing them at about 10-12 minutes apart they simply stopped.  So much for hoping that she came Saturday.  To try and keep things moving I got up and made Max and Luke run some errands with me but even though the contractions were still painful they weren't getting any closer together.

The next morning (Sunday) I awoke feeling pretty discouraged.  I was hoping that the day before would actually lead to something but without a contraction in sight we all got ready to head to the park.  I wanted to get out of the house and get my mind off of things.  While at the park around 10:30am I had to sit down a few times due to considerable pain but wasn't about to start timing anything as I didn't want to get my hopes up.  After the park we went over to the grocery store to grab some items for lunch and the contractions were starting to take my breath away.  I thought it was wise to begin timing them and realized that they were coming about 4-5 minutes apart.  Panic started to set-in as I hurried Luke along and out of the store.  On our way home they moved to about 6 minutes apart so I figured all the walking around at the park and grocery store was probably what was making them shorter.  I called Luke's mom to come and get Max and once home at about 12:20pm called into the Hospital Triage to see if I should come in.

The Triage nurse talked to me for a bit and after explaining that the contractions were coming about 4-6 minutes apart she advised me to stay at home for a bit longer until they were more like 3-5 minutes apart.  She also said that considering I talked to her for a few minutes and didn't need to stop for a contraction that more than likely I was in the beginning stages of labor and should wait it out a bit.  I took her advice and tried to eat a small lunch.  That's when things started to get even more intense.

I laid down to try and relax and time my contractions and was so discouraged to see that they were moving to about 8 minutes apart, however, they were so intense that I was screaming in pain.  After an hour of this I didn't know how I was going to make it any longer so I called my mom crying.  She said to  call the Triage nurse back and "fib" saying that they were coming 3-5 minutes apart so I could go in.  I was in so much pain that I took her advice.  At 1:50pm I called the nurse back and she said that I was more than welcome to come in, it didn't mean I was going to be able to stay but they could at least check me out.

Luke and I slowly grabbed our bags and I stumbled down the hall to the car.  I could barely make it 4 steps without peeling over in excruciating pain.  Once in the car I tried to relax but found myself somewhat blacking out.  All I know is I yelled at Luke a few times to quit looking at his phone and DRIVE!  The hospital is about 20 minutes from our house and with about 10 minutes to go I started to feel as though I needed to push.  Luke kept telling me that I needed to relax so when I told him what I was feeling he replied "um, I don't think you are supposed to do that yet!"

When we arrived at the hospital around 2:15pm I told Luke to park out front and go get me a wheelchair as there was no way I was going to be able to walk.  I felt a little foolish about this at first as though I may be overreacting but I seriously could not walk.  Once we got to Triage they kindly asked me for my name and unable to speak due to the pain I waived at Luke to fill them in.  With that they rushed me into a room where I informed them of my feeling the need to push.  The head Triage nurse came in at that point to check me quick before getting my information and realized that I was dilated to 9cm!  Well I guess that epidural is out of the question now.

They quickly called a doctor that was there at the hospital with another one of her patients and ordered all hands on deck. They wheeled me into a delivery room not even taking the time to get my name or any other information.  Soon the room was filled with people grabbing supplies and rushing around.  I didn't even have a chance to realize what was going on.  5 pushes and 10 minutes later there she was!  All 8lbs 11oz of her!  When they told me what she weighed I was amazed and thought, no wonder that hurt so bad!

Luke started texting everyone of her arrival and I later found out that some of the texts were things like "Margaret's a pro at birthing babies"  "birthing babies is easy"  "10 minutes and done".  To which I could only laugh at because to me, that was NOT easy, but I guess birthing a baby within 45 minutes of arriving at the hospital could make it look easy to others! :)

When my mom later heard the full story of what happened she felt guilty about her previous comment from this post where she assured me that "the baby will not fall out."  She almost did in the car!

The happy ending to all of this is our beautiful little girl is super healthy, very happy and as of today a very content and easy baby.  I recovered quickly and even went home from the hospital the very next day.

Max is adjusting well to having his little sister around and likes to give her "knucks" before he leaves for daycare in the morning or goes to bed at night.  He also says "I heard that!" every time she makes a sound.

Luke says after how quick her birth was that I was made to have kids and we should have a couple more... I think I need a few years to warm up to that idea just yet!

Maci Anne

Max meets Maci.  He was a little apprehensive so he clung to me and his monkey.

Kisses for the baby.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Countdown?

As I sit here 2 days before my due date I start to wonder, unless you have a scheduled C-section or induction can you really have any form of countdown to when the baby will arrive?  For people like me who schedule times to make a daily schedule it's torture wondering when will this all go down?  With Max it wasn't this bad as he came a whole week early and in a really unexpected way so I never made it to the "wondering when" phase.  With him I was checking out after a pedicure when my water broke and by the next morning I was a mom.  I say he came into this world with a bang and he's been an attention seeking crazy little boy ever since!  I pray that this little girl is more calm and content and maybe her not wanting to come out is a good sign of that?

Now that I'm so close I'm also starting to get the multiple daily text messages from friends and family asking THE question of the hour "how are your feeling?"  It doesn't bother me that they care so much that they are thinking of me multiple times a day, it actually makes me feel very loved. :)  The only question I have is how to respond each time?  "Good for now but 20 minutes ago I had a strange pain in my lower abdomen"  "Freaked out to go through labor again"  "Having a contraction but not sure if it's really doing anything"  "Tired" "Hungry" "Sick to my stomach" ... you get the point.  I find myself simply saying "No news to share" because let's be honest, they don't want to know how I'm feeling they simply want to know "are you on your way to the hospital yet or what?!

So for now I'm on God's schedule and have switched from praying for the baby to come NOW to praying for patience as I know that He has an exact time and way that this little one is going to come into our lives and trusting in that is what's getting me through these next few days of the waiting game.

As I write this I've been experiencing some contractions but again am not sure if they really mean anything.  Considering my water breaking last time was the sign to go in I'm not sure I will know when to head to the hospital this time if my water doesn't break.  This has been an actual concern of mine but my mom reassures me not to worry, "the baby will not just fall out!"  This small statement has kept me from worrying about keeping track of these silly contractions until they actually start to hurt a lot.  Hopefully she's right :)

Wish me luck!

Photo taken by my amazingly talented friend Laura with Laurels and Stars Photography

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Max's first skate

Luke took Max out skating for the first time last week.  He was a little wobbly at first and had difficulty keeping upright on his skates.  After doing the splits a few times and falling on his butt he began to get the hang of it a little better.  Once he had his hockey stick in his hand and a puck to shoot he was able to focus on that and the skating was much more natural... if you could even call it skating.  It was more like walking on the ice but it's a start!

After being out on the ice for awhile it was time for the high school team to practice so the "boni" as Max calls it came out to refresh the ice.  Max just loves the "boni" and it was hard to make him get off the ice.  We stayed for a little bit to watch the high school kids skate and he was in heaven.  He pounded on the glass shouting "Hockey! Skate! Stick! Daddy! Puck! Fast! Whoa!" every hockey related word he knows over and over again.  I think Luke was pretty happy at his reaction to his first time out on the ice.

Getting his skates on in the locker room.

"Skates!" he says

Walking out to the ice

First fall.  "cold daddy" he said as he touched the ice

"help!" he's saying as he tries to get back up.


Another fall

Friday, May 18, 2012

{Craft Project} Headbands

If you read this post you know that my crafting has gone into overdrive since finding out I was having a girl.  First I made these and next it was onto hair pretties!  From what my mom says I was born with little to no hair and it stayed that way for a few years.  That and it was white blonde so what hair I did have didn't show.  My mom called me "Baby Gandhi" and has since found pleasure in telling friends, boyfriends and acquaintances this little nick name.  Her constant reminder of my baldness as a baby used to irritate me but now I realize a lot of baby girls are as you would say "hair challenged."

With this in mind I came up with my second baby girl craft project... headbands!!!  What better way to keep her from getting called a boy while her hair grows in than cute little hair pretties... or head pretties I guess you could say as the hair may not be there right away :)

For a few weeks I scoured my favorite website (other than Pinterest) ETSY and collected lots of different materials to make my headbands.  Here are two shops I purchased from Fleuriste Craft Supply and Pretty Things Supplies.  Both were great to work with!  I had a tough time deciding what all I wanted to get and in what colors so I bought a few different things to start and will be back to buy more.  I also love wearing headbands and so figured that while I was ordering some for the baby I would order some adult size to make some for me!

The creating day came and my sister-in-law, Alicia, had planned to join me.  I found out before we started that Alicia was a little nervous to come over as she's not much of a crafter.  However, after she made her first one she realized how easy and fun it actually was!  This was my idea of a perfect Saturday morning crafting with a friend.  If anyone wants to join me next Saturday let me know.  You get to take home what you make :)

Alicia ended up taking home 2 headbands for herself, I made one for myself and baby girl has 4... so far.  Even our little model enjoyed the day (see below).

Here are some pictures from the day:

Some of the finished products.  Three for baby girl and the one on the left for me.

Alicia made this one for the baby, I love the soft colors with the punch of navy.

Supply table!
Our model showing off my creation.

The "mom really?" look

Ok, enough, get this off me I'm trying to slide here!  PS. Isn't that the cutest goalie T-Shirt?  Thanks to my aunt Joanie and cousin Betsy for that one :)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

There is a new cleaning lady in town {Bi-Weekly Cleaning Checklist}

In an effort to keep up with my money saving tactics I have reluctantly let go of my cleaning service and turned to myself to complete these daily tasks.  If you've read this post you know that I originally hired someone else to clean my two bedroom apartment 6 months after having my first child.  At that time I was simply trying to keep up with working full-time and being a full-time mom and my husband was still figuring out how to care for anyone else but himself.  Things have since changed a little and I am receiving more support around the house and so thought I might as well save the couple hundred dollars I spent a month and do the work myself.  Only problem is, I have somewhat forgot how to clean...

Growing up I was always cleaning.  Not for enjoyment but for MONEY!  This was my first paying job.  I can't recall exactly when I began cleaning my parents house but I know it was probably around middle school age if not earlier.  I always had a goal in mind as to what I was going to save up for and so doing odd jobs was the only way to make that cash.  {This is a total side story but when I was a lot younger I wanted to buy a horse so I went around the neighborhood asking anyone that would let me to pull the weeds out of their garden for a price.  Obviously this was a few dollars here and there but I was determined to save up for that horse!  Needless to say, after a summer of pulling weeds I ended up going out and spending my money on something smaller and more immediate but I think it taught me a good lesson on working}

Flash forward a few years and I still had my eyes set on having the money to buy things when I wanted them and not having to wait until my birthday or Christmas.  This is where cleaning my parents house and others comes into play.  Every time I needed some extra cash my mom would put together a list of individual cleaning duties and then would price each one out as to how much she would pay me to do them.  I would then spend the day crossing off the ones that #1 were the easiest and #2 paid the most.  This then turned into a weekly job for me.  My mom would put together each weeks duties and I would cross them off as I went.  (Fellow mom's, keep this in mind for your kids).  My mom must have talked me up at work as one summer I even scored a weekly cleaning job for one of her coworkers!  Again, she would leave me a list on the kitchen table of what all she wanted completed that day.  I would spend 4 hours each week completing the list and checking them off.

You would think after all of these years of practice that I would be pretty talented at cleaning.  Well, I'm sorry to say I'm not.  I'm one of those people that enjoy having a clean home, it makes things feel more peaceful, however, I also can live with a small amount of clutter and dirt.  This is where the problem lies.  I'm ok with leaving the dishes dirty in the sink overnight if it means that I can spend more time with my son.  I don't make the bed every morning because I find it pointless and annoying.  I do make the bed at night though because I can't stand to sleep in a messy bed. (backwards I know)  When I made the decision to take over the cleaning I said to my husband, Luke, "I'm not even sure where to start when it comes to cleaning this place, and I'm not very good a cleaning." He agreed that I wasn't very good at cleaning, which made me upset a little but I asked for it I guess.

It's been a few months of Margaret the cleaning lady and I still can't seem to figure out what to do next.  I'm good at dishes, laundry and picking up because those are things that you can see need to be done and I do them as needed but when it comes to scrubbing showers, mopping floors and dusting I feel like I need a better system in place.  Sometimes I stand in the middle of my apartment thinking... "I know I should be cleaning something but I'm not really sure where to start???" Then I give up and drop the cleaning idea all together.

This is where my newest organizational tool comes in.  The cleaning checklist!  I'm really good at making lists and when I can visualize what needs to be done I don't waist time standing around trying to figure out what to do next.  My only problem with this is again, with my lack of cleaning knowledge, I didn't know what all to have on my list.  In comes Martha Stewart.  A little googling and up pops a weekly cleaning checklist  provided by Martha to helps out others who may need to be told to do such things like... wipe mirrors, flush the kitchen drain with boiling water and vacuum vents.  Considering my 2 bedroom apartment doesn't feature a Home Office, Library or Stairway I will be modifying this list to better fit my needs.  Also to better work with my schedule I'm going to break it up into daily tasks that I can fit into a 10-20 minute time period.  That way, after work I can spend 10-20 minutes cleaning SOMETHING and at the end of the week feel as though I accomplished a lot more!

Below is my first attempt at a bi-weekly cleaning schedule.  This may need to be modified as I go along but will work as a start.  Now every 2 weeks I will know that everything will get cleaned at least once... just like it did when my cleaning service did it... :(