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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Monday, March 29, 2010


Even when I was pregnant, I enjoyed my mornings alone with the pea. I do laundry, read the news, and blog while she sits with me in a sling or plays next to me on the floor. It is our quiet time together and I know she enjoys it. She looks at me intently as I catch up with a friend on the phone or giggles as I tickle her tiny toes. Before, Olivia kept me company in my belly and now she is here and keeps me company just the same. Everyone jokes about how she will crawl any day and that I better watch out because the pea is so spunky but the reality is that I am in no hurry to have this little person grow up. I want to savor this slobbery baby who travels by rolling or catching a ride in my arms. One day she will no longer need me in the same way but I will never forget that at one point she looked at me as if I had all the answers, that once upon a time I could give her everything she needed.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

A tiny rant.

Though my blog is about happy things, I do find it necessary to write something that has been weighing on my mind lately. I am very tired of mothers calling other mothers names and labeling them as BAD mothers. The judgments, rude comments, and criticizing really bother me for a variety of reasons. I am not innocent, I have surely judged in my mind when I see a mom buying junk food for her kids at the grocery store or an infant seat dangerously perched atop a shopping cart. Naturally, it is even worse online. Blogging mothers excusing themselves for starting solids before six months or leaving kids with a sitter for a night to themselves and people being torn apart and vilified on e-communities. Why do we have to make excuses to avoid being flamed? Is it really necessary to question ourselves because other people may not agree? It comes down to the raw fact that every family and child is different and who are we to question it?! If we cannot be each other's strength as mothers and as women who else can we expect it from? Comments and advice are encouraged and welcome, we have so much to learn from each other! We can educate and spread our wealth of information! But please, be kind and thoughtful. Aren't these the lessons we want to teach our children? I apologize for ranting, but this is how I feel. The choices I make for my daughter are best suited for us, and I applaud any mother for doing what is best for her family. We have no place to point fingers and slap on labels. We are all good mothers, we all love our kids, and calling people out DOES NOT make you better. Whew.

Image: Google

A pea at the beach.

Yesterday, on her 5 month "birthday", one of my best friends and I took Olivia to Ocean Beach. Before going to the beach, we met at the park for coffee and a walk. Balboa Park is just so lovely and every single time I go I am reminded how lucky I am to live in such a great city. I was trying to keep the pea protected from the sun by keeping her in the stroller with a muslin blanket over it and she also sported her cool sunglasses.
The day was quite toasty and the park was a bit crowded so we decided to venture west. We stopped for a refreshment before going to the shore and Olivia decided to try a steal a sip of Micaela's water. This little girl is just too much! We were chatting and I look down and see this:
She had a little taste and that was it. Too cold, I am sure!
I haven't bought sunblock for the baby yet because most of them are so full of chemicals . We will be buying Badger brand sunscreen because it seems to be the best option. Micaela wore Olivia in the wrap so the sun would not harm her skin but we took her out to show her the sand and water. It was a blast. She loved the sand and was so curious about the ocean. Todd was concerned about the sand in her mouth or eyes but I assured him her hands were quickly rinsed off and she only played in the sand for a few moments. I am so glad she enjoyed herself because growing up there were few things I loved more than a day at the beach.
It was such a perfect Saturday, one of the best in a while!! Happy 5 months!!!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Easter Toys

Without all the extra fuzz.
I cannot believe my precious pea will be 5 months old tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

"Healthy stuff is more expensive."

Recently on some message boards I have seen questions regarding the higher cost of organics and other natural products. I've heard many people say they buy inferior foods or other things because they are less expensive. The truth is that you have to be creative to save money and you definitely have to be creative while saving money AND going organic!
Right now we live off one income since I stay home with the baby. Ever since Olivia was born I have gone more and more in the natural route of things and this coincided with having a smaller income each month. Still, I have found that I can make wiser purchases without breaking the bank. We have some big steps left toward being at our ultimate green goal but I think every little bit counts. There are different categories and most of them are geared towards baby goods:

First and foremost is organic foods. Whole Food is not the best place for shopping for real food on a budget. I have found that places such as Henry's and Trader Joe's have the same or similar versions of stuff sold at Whole Foods for a significantly smaller price. Local farmer's markets are great places to buy produce and even organic baked goods that are cheaper and more fresh than supermarkets. Organic baby foods in jars costs A LOT more than just making a whole batch of baby food once a week and storing it in glass jars yourself.

Baby clothes, toys, etc.-
Olivia does not have a million toys because I am very picky about them. I hate the colored plastic ones because everything goes straight to her mouth. Many of them are so full of chemicals I am shocked they are even still in production. I would rather her have a select few wooden or cloth toys that may cost more but are better quality. Many people choose not to shop at Walmart, which I understand, but they sell adorable organic pajamas for babies for around $7. The quality is good and you cannot beat that price. Other than Walmart, I also shop sales at Target and online for clothes. Even Baby Gap sells organic pieces- plus lots of good sales and their clothing really lasts. Munchkin brand sells great glass bottles. They are BPA-free but the nipples are not great. I just buy the BPA-free Dr. Brown's nipples and it is still cheaper than other glass bottle brands that I do not think are any better.

Bath and body-
Henry's and Trader Joe's sell natural bath and body products for great prices. For Olivia I use a small capful of Burt's Baby Bees in her tub and wash her with a Weleda baby bar. The bar has lasted for quite a while and her skin is soft and clear. Extra virgin coconut oil works as a moisturizer, rash ointment, and (if you actually do this...) cooking!!! Some people forgo shampoo altogether and instead use homemade solutions for hair cleaning. I am not sure I am ready to ditch the suds yet.

Trade and share-
A good friend let Olivia borrow her son's bumbo chair and I am so glad because I was about to buy one. Luckily, I got to try it first and realized we wouldn't get a whole lot of use out of it. The pea is so curious she leans forward too much and tries to get out and she cannot be in it without constant supervision. So glad I did not spend the money on yet another baby product that ends up in storage or unused before long. Trading and sharing with fellow mamas is a great way of trying new stuff and also finding new homes for yours!

Make Your Own-
Making your own alternatives is a great option and some projects involve minimal sewing skills. You can make your own cloth wipes, unpaper towels, reusable storage bags, fleece/recycled wool diaper covers, etc. Just search Google and you will be amazed at all you can find! Trust me, if I made my own wipes and burp cloths so can you!

Also, cloth diapering and breastfeeding free up a lot of income for other things. I am so glad we cloth diaper but just recently I stopped feeling nauseated every time I have to buy more formula.

Hopefully I will be able to add more tricks toward going organic in the near future! Please share any tips or suggestions you have! I have learned so much from other women online.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Not my doing


The Sweetest Part

Todd and I went out with some friends Friday night and the pea stayed home being spoiled by grandpa and grandma. We decided to ride Todd's motorcycle there and riding through the streets of Banker's Hill brought back so many memories. The smell alone brings such a strong sense of nostalgia to me. As we rode past his old studio, restaurants where we had dinner, and the dive bars we used to frequent I soon missed by little girl. The image of her sweet face filled my thoughts and I was overcome by an overwhelming sense of love and devotion. I feel as if though our adventures as a couple are just beginning but we already have had so much, our past is so rich. Instead of yearning for those moments that have come and gone I am once again reminded that this tiny person is everything- she is the sum of all our parts.
2007- Solvang, CA
2007- My sister's 1970s party
Earth Day
2008- Right before moving to San Francisco
2009- Valentine's Day, about 2 weeks pregnant in San Francisco
About 5 months pregnant
Dolores Park San Francisco, Day we found out we were having a girl (we were SO happy)
September 2009- very pregnant
2010- Catalina Island Ferry
♥ ♥

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Olivia Simone's Lullabies #2

beach house- astronaut

Thankful Thursday

My mom is proof that a woman can really have it all. She is a career woman, a wife, and a mother. She nursed us, finished her degree, and had dinner on the table every night. She wears so many hats and she always does it gracefully and with heart. I can only hope that one day I can come close. I love you, I know you're reading.
My beautiful mum before I came along.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

BAD mother.

Today the unthinkable happened. Something truly nightmarish. Olivia fell.
It was a typical happy morning. I was getting the baby ready for the day and I put her in the middle of our queen-sized bed to go wet a wipe in our bathroom which is right next to our bedroom. This had never been a problem because she was an immobile infant. Not anymore! She rolls. Rolls quickly and efficiently. I never left her alone longer than 30 seconds, never on an edge, and never on a high surface. Anyway, I heard her cry and ran in. She was laying on her back. I lost it. I picked her up and cried with her and felt like the worst mother in the world. Who knows, maybe you'll agree? Or maybe you will share your stories of bad motherhood. She was over it immediately, and cooed at me as I sat in shock rocking her. I felt weird all day because of it. After talking to friends and my aunts I feel a lot better. We luckily have carpet and the bed is not far off the ground.

In other news, Happy St. Patrick's Day! It was 87 degrees today and I dressed the small one in this cute summer outfit, but then I had to add a green onesie because I did not want her getting pinched! Usually Todd and I would be out drinking green beer but this year I am sitting home blogging and in pajamas. :)

Wish List Wednesday

I will play this week. I do not want much. I used to love fancy things but I feel that I outgrew them. Oddly, I am so much happier and at ease now that my life is so simple and I am free from lusting after material possessions. But...

I wish for a cottage. A cozy and sweet cottage in the woods for my little family. Maybe there would even be a small brook where Olivia could skip stones and I could have my organic garden. Most likely we could get a couple of hens, too.
And just for fun, because I can actually buy this very soon, two Sophie giraffes. Olivia loves chewing on everything and I think she would fancy her.
The second Sophie is for Tre, the pea's best friend. Photobucket

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Today was the day that the pea met her blankie, Carl.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Toes, the sun, and lurking.

The sun has returned to San Diego! I rejoiced when I left my house this morning to meet my family for coffee. Olivia was so comfy barefoot and in a loose, cool outfit as she soaked in some natural Vitamin D. She loved how warm and toasty it was and so did I. And she had so much fun when her Aunt Jenny wore her at the grocery store today. Olivia is such a spunky little girl, I am loving this age! She is no longer a squishy newborn but is now a fun and sweet baby girl. Photobucket
Most of us would agree that milestone posts on mommy blogs aren't the funnest, but I have to share that the pea discovered her toes. She thinks her feet are so entertaining. I mean, who needs toys when you have body parts?!Photobucket
And lastly, I'd like to ask you to say hi. I'd love to hear from you. I have a counter... so I know you're out there ;-)

Spring is near!

The munchkin got her first Easter bunny from her great-grandma Daphne! She loved it instantly, she loves all soft and furry things. Tragically, the bunny had to be taken away shortly after. Tufts of bunny fur came out in her hands and she puts everything in her mouth so it had to go away until she is a little bit older. I am pretty sure she is over it already.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Three of my best girlfriends recently went on a South American trip and brought me back some goodies. They went to Guatemala, Argentina, and Brazil. One of my friends brought Olivia an adorable little handwoven outfit that will be perfect for summer. Another friend brought me Brazilian Vogue and best of all a beautiful baby carrier called a tzute. I had never heard of these, but I told her to bring me one of the handmade carriers the native women wear. These textiles are used for a variety of things and not just for babywearing! It is so beautiful and colorful and the carry is similar to a ring sling but in my opinion a lot more comfortable. Here are my first attempts of wearing the pea in it, but now I have a better idea of how it works. Thank you, Karina!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for my sister because she is everything I am not. She makes me stop and think sometimes that maybe I need to take a step back and realize that being nice is always better. She is a constant reminder that a big heart never hardens. No one loves like Paloma does. Although she is three years younger than me, she has always been my trusty sidekick and strongest advocate. Everyone who knows her knows that she never goes first, she always waits, and she always smiles. She is compassionate and funny. Now that Olivia is around, she still continues to share her love and her tenderness. The baby sees her and her eyes light up. I would give my life for her if she promised me she'd live it fully. Sometimes I envy her sensitivity and empathy and other times they annoys me. I want her to be tougher, more selfish, more forward. I know that even though I always try to teach her lessons, I still have yet to learn hers. I cannot imagine having a more devoted friend or a more honest confidant. Her future husband and kids have no idea how lucky they are going to be.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The other lullabies make her cry.

My kid prefers to go to bed with a soundtrack made by moi.

Olivia Lullaby #1

Sunday, March 7, 2010

How did you change?

Everyone talks about how motherhood changes you. I cannot believe how true it is. I was just talking to one of my best friends the other day, and she said that after meeting Olivia she realized how excited she is for the day she becomes a mother. And she also commented on knowing how completely altering parenthood must be. We are lucky as women to be able to truly feel what it is to create life. To see it grow, and twist, and become inside of you. Only a mother knows what it is to carry a child as a part of you for months, the heaviness of it in your bones and and in quiet thoughts. I really could not describe that part adequately, most likely no one can.

To the naked eye I am pretty much the same. I am still sarcastic, silly, and doubtful. My passions remain and I feel youthful. But now I go about my days differently. Every morning my day does not begin with me. The night falls and I am the last to go to sleep. Right now I exist to serve another, to cultivate another person. My biggest difference is that my center is no longer me. The middle of everything is now her and I am just hopefully and protectively pushing it along. Choices have many new considerations and ever decision is not so simple.

The second big difference is that I am softer in some parts and stronger in others. This statement is both figurative and literal. My determination is stronger, my purpose is stronger. My body is stronger and so is my backbone because I grew a human. My skin is softer and so is my spirit. I'm less cynical and more gentle because cynicism will age me. My heart is more tender because the sweetest part of the universe smiles at me when she wakes in the morning.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

I baked.

I decided to bake a cake tonight. I like baking a lot more than cooking. I wonder if Todd loves me even more now because I baked for no reason. Yeah, probably. I made vanilla with vanilla frosting and unbirthday sprinkles. It is delicious because I used my mom's supersecret recipe ;-) The cake did not break when I flipped it over and I was so proud.

Have a Happy Saturday