Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Reader beware: ghost stories!

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
Tis the season to be spooky!  My friend Kate posted about a paranormal experience she had tonight and it inspired me to share some of my stories. What better time than Halloween, amirite?

I 100% believe in ghosts even and while I've never actually SEEN one, I have sensed them.  I'm here today to share a few of those stories and a couple that aren't mine, but are pretty bone-chilling (or at least they chilled my bones!). 

The Middle Room

My first personal experience with a feeling of a ghost or entity was at my great-grandma's house, later owned by my parents as an office.  It was a lovely two-story house and I felt totally comfortable there, except for one room, the middle room upstairs.  It wasn't just me, but everyone in the extended family was freaked out by this room.  Nothing happened to me in it, but every time I had to go in there to grab something for my great-grandma, I felt terrified. It felt like somebody or something was watching me.  The hair on my arm would stand up and it just felt off. I could never get out of there quick enough!  *Shudder*   My dad tells a terrifying story about that room -- he says, and I believe him, that when he was little, he had to SLEEP in that room and one night, when everyone else was sleeping but he was still awake, he heard a car pull into the drive and he looked out and saw a long sedan driving in.  He just knew that the driver was coming for him.  He burrowed under the covers, but he heard the car door close and then the front door open and he heard someone walking up the steps and eventually opened the door.  He said a man came into the room, but his face was blurred like it was a black and white tv screen.  The man leaned into my dad's face and told him to go to sleep and then he just disappeared into the darkness.  He believes this man to be The Sandman.  Now, who knows if that story is true, but one thing for sure is that room was creepy.

That Time a Ghost Walked Through Me

During summers in college, I worked with my dad installing security systems and one day, we were headed to a really old mansion in Yellow Springs, OH.  He told me that it was sometimes creepy, but he's always telling me stories to freak me out so I took his warning with a grain of salt.  However, once we got there I was like yep this is a weird house.  A lot of times, my dad would be on one floor and I'd be on the other and we communicated with walkie talkies -- this is when I was the most scared, but as soon as I was back with him, I felt safe.  WELL -- we were down in the basement together and all of a sudden, the air turned as cold as winter and I felt something pass through me. It can only be described an an entity, a being.  It was colder than cold and I felt it emotionally -- I felt sad and scared and like my heart was literally breaking and then... it was gone.  I looked up at my dad and the look on his face said it all - he felt it too! We finished up as fast as possible and ran back to the van!  He said that he's experienced that feeling before in the same area of the house but didn't want to tell me because he was afraid I would be too scared. 

The Other Creepy House
Dad and I had another creepy experience, but one in which nothing actually happened, but it was more of a feeling.  We were installing a security system in a perfectly normal house, except it didn't feel normal.  It felt like someone was constantly watching us or like something really bad was hidden from view.  One room was full of standing harps, which is odd on it's own, but the entire house was just filled with a bad energy.  There were also a bunch of stuffed cats throughout, and they looked like actual cats, like taxoderm-ied cats and it seemed like their eyes followed me, UGH. It was just funky and there's no real way to describe it.  Neither of us mentioned it while we were in the house, but once we were gone, we looked at each other and said "that was weird, right?!"

The Ghost on Our Landing
As a kid, I always got a weird feeling on the top landing of our stairs.  I would never linger there long and tried to just skip over it by running fast and hopping to the next set of stairs that led to the hallway.  Well, one day my mom didn't know I was in the next room and she casually said to my dad, "I think she's gone now."  "Who?," replied Dad.  "The little girl on the landing, I haven't sensed her in awhile."  WTF?!?!?!  I didn't ask her about it until later but my mom claims that the ghost of a little girl used to be there and then just disappeared one day.  Quite a few people died in our house, as it's very old and it was the only house in the area to remain above water in the great 1913 Piqua Flood.  So who knows? I'm just glad that it's gone!

**The next two stories aren't mine, but they are so good that I have to share.**

The Ghost in My Dad's Old Room
When I was little, I always used to sleep in the back room at my grandma's house, my dad's old room.  I loved sleeping there since it was his childhood room and the bathroom was right on the other side, so when my grandparents took a shower, I would hear the water running and it was just so soothing.  The wallpaper has a beautiful shine to it and the bed is so comfortable.  Well, one day, my mom forbid me from sleeping in that room anymore.  She said I could spend the night, but I couldn't sleep there.  As kids do, I kept pressing her for the reason why I couldn't sleep there and she said it was haunted. Well, that was enough for me as a little kid and so I slept in my aunt's old room instead, but when I got older (11, 12ish), I asked her how did she know it was haunted. She told me that she just had a bad experience there.  Of course I kept hounding her and she finally told me the whole story when I was in high school.  She claims that one time, in fact one of the first times my dad brought her home to meet his parents, she was sleeping in that room.  She woke up one night to a woman with white hair in curlers standing over her bed. She thought it was someone playing a prank on her. Then the woman put her hands around my mom's neck and her hands were as cold as ice.  She started choking my mom and wouldn't stop -- my mom struggled and screamed until someone rushed into her room and turned the lights on and then the woman disappeared.  WHO KNOWS IF THIS IS TRUE but I have never been comfortable in that room since then. 

Mary
Herein lies the story that actually freaks me out the most. So, my cousin Sarah bought a house.  It was sold by a man named Walt who had to move into a nursing home after his wife, Mary, died.  In the living room, Sarah's 2 cats and dogs would sit and stare at the corner of the room.  There was an adjacent bathroom where the light would always flicker or even turn totally off or on- I personally experienced this. Well, this continued for several months.  One day, Sarah's nieces were over.  They were around 3 or 4 years old and one of them said to Sarah, "Auntie Sarah, who is that lady?" Sarah asked her who she was talking about and she pointed to the same corner that the pets stared at and said "that lady right there in the rocking chair."  

From then on, Sarah decided it was Mary sitting in that room and that she was a benevolent ghost. She'd always say "hi, Mary!" when she walked into the room.  Well, Walt died a few months later and everything stopped.  The lights stopped flickering, the pets stopped paying any attention to the corner.  Freaky, right?  It's like she was waiting for Walt to join her so that she could be at peace.

The Scary Story That Wasn't

We'll end this post with one of the scariest (and dumbest) moments of my life. Ok so there I was, watching tv in my room, at home on break from college and I was watching this scary af movie with Dakota Fanning and Robert De Niro -- "Hide and Seek," I think it was called.  Well, on the screen, a horror scene with blood was playing out and all of a sudden, blood started oozing out of my screen.  I screamed bloody murder and my 12 year old sister came rushing in.  "THE TV IS BLEEDING," I screamed -- she rationally flipped the lights on and.... the red candle I had been burning on top of the tv pooled and spilled over, dripping wax down the screen.

The End.  



Do you believe in ghosts?  Do you have any stories of your own?

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Haddie's 9 month update







Haddie turned 9 months last Monday!  I still haven't even posted her monthly photo to Instagram.  This week flew by! I always thought it must feel so significant when a mother's baby turns 9 months because they've been out as long as they were in, but the math doesn't quite work out that way.  She was born at 41 weeks 3 days, so we still have a ways to go until we can celebrate that milestone!

We had her 9 month check-up on Tuesday and she's 30 inches (2.5 ft!!) long, 20.6 lbs, and a head circumference of 45 cm.  The doctor said "she's off the charts for height!" so I was excited to see her little dot marked on the chart literally above the chart, but she's actually 99.4th percentile so it's still technically on the chart, but that does mean that only 6 babies out of 1000 are taller than her! Her weight is 83rd percentile which is the highest it's ever been, and her head is like 80th or something, I forget.

She pulls up on everything now and even lets go and stands by herself for a few seconds. She crawls around the house so fast and she's started getting into everything!  We love hearing her little hands and knees make a plap-plap-clomp-clomp sound as she cruises around on the hard wood.  (I also feel bad for her poor knees but can't convince Bill that we need these.)

She's started babbling and says a lot of things that almost sound like words.  I've definitely heard "mama" a few times, but I don't think she's actually saying it as my name.

As I've mentioned about 10x already (sorry), she's moved to a convertible carseat.  I think she definitely has come to like it now. 

I think her favorite 9-month development is that she learned how to clap! It's one of the cutest things I've ever seen.

She tried a lot of new foods this month.  I bought some jarred baby food at the store for our trip to Ohio/Indiana and I realized that it's a really easy way to introduce new foods.  Previously I had been cooking up a whole batch, but that was such a waste if she didn't like it or it didn't agree with her.  So we've been sticking with jars of food to introduce new foods.  This month she tried strawberries, pumpkin, beets (which gave her a rash, womp womp), blueberries, mango, and probably more but that's all I'm remembering at the moment.

At her checkup, the doctor diagnosed her with something called FPIES, which stands for food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome.  I told her what happened when we accidentally ate oatmeal made with milk and she immediately said FPIES, combined with the experiences we've been struggling with from the beginning.  Kids who have FPIES just can't process certain foods but the good news is that most grow out of it by 3.  I need to do some more research on this, but please let me know if you have experience with this!


Here's a few shots from her 9th month and I'm sorry, this whole capturing-good-pictures-without-showing-her-face thing is proving to be more difficult than I thought it would be:










Cheers to a good week, all!

Friday, October 19, 2018

Five for Friday: Cleaning Edition


~* 1 *~

I had been in a great routine with Haddie a couple of months ago, but we had some visitors and traveled and it all fell apart.  I had been very diligent about doing a few morning chores that made my life easier like unloading the dishwasher, putting a load of laundry in, emptying the dehumidifer, and cleaning the cat box but then it went to the wayside and everything piled up!  I'm trying hard to back into the routine, but it's taking me more effort than I'd like to admit. Does this happen to anyone else?

~* 2 *~

Mrs. Hinch -- is anyone else following Mrs. Hinch on Instagram?? I've been following her for a few weeks and it's been a crazy ride.  She's British and is obsessed with cleaning.  She posts stories of her cleaning methods and it's so addicting to watch!  She has names for all of her cleaning tools like Dave the Duster, Vera the mop, Minkeh the sponge.  It's so goofy but I love it. She makes cleaning seem fun and it's inspired me to clean more. When I started following her, she had 200K followers and just the other day she hit one million -- in like less than a month!  It's crazy!  I feel like I've joined a cult though, because I'm literally obsessed.  I can't stop watching her videos and I'm always trying to find American (and chemical free, which she is... not) equivalents to her products. I think of myself as a member of The Hinch Army and I often refer to cleaning as "hinching."   I've even joined not one, but two Facebook groups dedicated to her and her methods! Send help lol.  Or don't, because my house is getting cleaner than ever!

~* 3 *~

Clean Mama -  IG account and blogger that I've started following is Clean Mama.  Anyone else?  She has a schedule for daily cleaning tasks that I'm trying to follow as a rough guide, but it seems to take me a long time to do everything.  Her weekly schedule is Monday: bathrooms, Tuesday: Dusting, Wednesday: Vacuuming, Thursday: Floor Washing, and Friday: Catch All.  I was doing well until I got to vacuuming.  For some reason this took me hours to complete.  I never have vacuumed the whole house at once before, but rather when I cleaned each room.  It took me so long to do it all at once that I had to split it up over 2 days!  I suppose it would be easier if I didn't have a baby attached to me in the Ergo.
~* 4 *~

Speaking of vacuuming, I've had a similar version of this vacuum for 2 years and I just realized this week that you can lift the canister off and use it as a canister vacuum.  Makes stairs and hard-to-reach places much easier.  Duh.  One of the reasons I bought it was because it said "lift away."  I guess I thought that meant lifting dirt away??

~* 5 *~

In final cleaning-related things, am I the only person who knew that from time to time, you had to clean your dishwasher? I knew you had to clean gross leftover food, but apparently you should actually clean it.  I bought this stuff and it's cleaning dishes so much better now.  It smells good and it was literally sparkling after I used it.  But seriously, did everyone else know you're supposed to do this?!


Well, that's the end of this boring post! Linking up with Katie!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

A week in Ohio and Indiana

Well, Blogtober is going just about as well as I imagined it would, ha.  I totally had intentions to blog during our trip but I never even got my Chromebook out of the bag!

We had a great long trip home. We left last Saturday and returned this past Sunday.  We spent 2 days with my family in Ohio and then headed to Indiana to Bill's grandma's house for 3 days, then back to Ohio for the duration. It was a lot of driving - 8 hrs to and from DC, then 4 hours to and from Indiana for a total of 24 hours, not including all of the stops for food, bathroom breaks, diaper changes and baby feedings! I'm glad we got those new tires on our car!  I'm also glad that we got the new carseat.  It some adjusting, but I think she was happy to have more room to stretch out and sit upright.

Anyways, to recap the trip in full detail would take a lot of posts so I'm going to just attempt to catch the highlights and hope this post isn't a million words long. So, the highlights:


  • Playing lots of games with my family. 


  • Eating my mom's delicious food. She made lemon orzo chicken (a recipe I think I'll be sharing soon!), spaghetti (my fave), beef stew, and the best ribs ever.  One night we also got wings from the best local wing spot, Wings & Rings. 


  • Spending time with my grandma.


My heart!!



  • Haddie meeting Bill's grandma for the first time!




  • Hanging on the farm in Indiana with Bill's family, including his cousin's new baby! 





  • Looking through his grandpa's old photos.  

This is his grandpa on a break home from the war



  • Early morning coffee at Winan's with Amy!  She happened to be in the area for work and I was dying to see her over our trip, so we made it work.  8:30 coffee made me feel very adult, lol.



  • Playing some Keno at 311 Drafthouse.



  • A few rounds of croquet with the fam.


All bundled up to watch the game



Haddie's view of the course!



  • Playing with the best bowls and ladles!




  • Lots of sink baths! I will definitely miss being able to stand up to bathe her.





  • Grocery shopping with Mom.  For some reason, this always takes an inexplicably long time with her, but it was great to spend quality time with her and it was oddly comforting to shop in my hometown stores. 



  • Got a haircut!  I always like to get my hair cut at home because it's a fraction of the DC prices.  I actually chopped a lot off, around 6-7 inches.  Haddie was always pulling it and it was looking scraggly and getting tangled.  I don't miss it at all! 





  • My mom took 2 days off of work so we got some quality time in during the week, a treat!



  • Shopped cute little stores in Troy with Bill and Mom and grabbed lunch on the square.



  • My brother came home for the last 2 days that we were home!  He went off to college this year and it was very weird the first week with his room all empty. It was so good to spend time with him.



  • My parents really wanted to introduce Bill to Maid-Rite in Greenville, which is a local diner that sells loose meat hamburgers.  It's been around forever, it's exterior walls are covered in gum, and it's always crowded.  It's definitely an experience!  I'm glad we went, though I'm not sure how much he liked them, haha.  






  • I'll be writing more about this soon, but we went to the pumpkin patch!




  • I spent an evening making copies of some of my favorite recipes of my mom's.  I'm really excited to make some of her meals for Bill.
  • Last but not least, Kyle came home on our last night in town and we played games.  It was great to see him and catch up!





The lowlights of the trip included me accidentally eating dairy which caused Haddie to get violently ill for a few hours one day.  I've never seen a baby throw up so much and you could tell she felt truly horrible.  I officially feel like a real mother now that I've been vomited on.  My poor little brother was sick as a dog from allergies -- you could barely hear him when he spoke because his voice was totally gone. My sister wasn't able to come home at all.  She recently started teaching at a new school and she's in a musical so she couldn't grab time off.  The temperatures were very extreme - the first 3/4 of the trip was hot, like nearing 90, and then the last few days were cold, near freezing in the morning with highs around 55.  I was glad to experience real fall weather, but I didn't pack for it so I was pretty chilly. There was a spider in my bed and a spider in my shower at my parents, and then a spider in the sink at Bill's grandmas!  Finally, my dad's barber Bruce died.  You might think that this last piece isn't big news, but it actually is.  He's been his barber for literally 45 years and if I had been a boy, I would have been named after him.  That's right, I would have been named Bruce Kruse.  RIP Bruce. :(

We were home for a long time, but no matter how long I'm there, it's never enough time.  I have been feeling really homesick lately so I was grateful to be there, but the trip didn't do much to help - now I just miss it more than ever!  I've been wishing so badly that we lived closer to home for the past few years and having Haddie has made it so much worse.  My grandma is my only grandparent left and I want to spend more time with her.  Our dog is 14, my parents and aunts/uncles aren't getting any younger, and there's a variety of issues throughout my family. My mom kept mentioning how hard it is that all her kids live away from home and I never got it before but I do now.  I also just really love my hometown and my home state.  Everything feels easier there and safer.  I love the space and the beautiful skies and scenery.  BUT, I don't live there -- we live here, our life is here, and I want to make this place feel like home.  Breastfeeding hormones don't help when you feel homesick, or really when you feel any feeling at all - it feels like everything is magnified! Woof.  Didn't mean to end this post on a bad note, but like to keep it real!

To sum it up, we had a fun family trip and I cannot wait to go back.

Does anyone else live far away from home and struggle with it?  Any tips to make it easier when you have kids but live far away?

Friday, October 5, 2018

5 for Friday

~* 1 *~

I've decided to change the title of these posts to Five for Friday.  The name is as an ode to Five for Fighting -- I used to love his songs.  (Little known fact that Five for Fighting isn't a group, but just one individual). Now his songs make me kind of sad, almost like they are too nostalgic, but they hold a special place in my heart!

Ok ~*1.5*~ because that was a lame first one

I just started reading The Wright Brothers by David McCullough and so far I'm loving it.  This is the first of his books that I've read which is both surprising and embarrassing given how much I love history.  I'm particularly loving this one because it takes place in my home city of Dayton, Ohio!  The first few chapters have been describing life in Dayton in the early 1900s and I'm absolutely eating it up.  I'll report back when I'm finished, but so far so good.  I've learned a lot, like Wilbur and Orville had 3 siblings!  Who knew?  Have you read this one?


~* 2 *~

Yesterday, I went to my first-ever estate sale and boy was it an experience.  It was basically like a garage sale except everything in the house was on sale.  If you're not familiar, they are usually held after someone passes away, or sometimes after a divorce or other life event.  I ended up buying some dish towels and a brand new tea box. That, however, is not the point of my tale.

So, there I was in the kitchen, looking through the cupboards that said "open me, good stuff inside!"  I opened one of of the cupboards with my right hand, when I would normally use my left, but I was holding Haddie and somehow my ring finger got stuck.  Like, really stuck!  I tried in vain for a good 5 minutes to pry it out, but there was no hope.  Eventually I had to call to one of the women running the sale and a whole crew came over and ultimately used a screwdriver to remove the knob.  One of the women exclaimed "this is certainly an estate sale first!" Mortifying.

Honestly, HOW???

 Then, as I was trying to check out, they told me I needed to download an app to pay.  No problem, I say, and go to pull out my phone which is... missing.  I knew that I had it in the house because I took the above photo.  I searched everywhere I could think of and before I knew it, everyone in the house was looking for it-- the team working as well as other shoppers.  We called it a million times and eventually someone found it in a washcloth drawer in the kitchen!  I paid and hightailed it out of there in embarrassment.

In my defense, I read an article about tips for your first estate sale(!) and one of them was to not bring your purse.  I needed my phone in case I found something worth checking with Bill about.  Every single other shopper in the house had a big ol' purse, so I won't be following that tip next time.


~* 3 *~

I have spend most of my "free" time over the last week catching up on Grey's Anatomy. I watched this show religiously in it's heyday. In college, my friends and I would gather on Thursday nights to watch it together and I also owned all of the seasons on DVDs that I played nonstop, much to my roommates' chagrin. I lived for that show.  Then when the "new" batch of interns (April, Jackson, etc) came on, I lost interest, plus I got tired of being sad every episode. A few years ago, I caught back up and then when Derek died I declared that I was officially done with Grey's.  Well, as I mentioned awhile ago, I was attempting to watch all of ER, but it just made me miss Grey's so I decided to start back up where I left off and boy am I glad that I did!  It's so good.  I'm currently nearing the end of season 13 and it's seriously really good.  I am so into it!  I still don't like how sad some of the episodes are (anything involving babies or old people kills me) but nevertheless, I'm hooked.  Do you still watch Grey's?


~* 4 *~

We are headed home to Ohio to visit my family for a few days and then we are heading to Indiana to see Bill's grandma, and then back to Ohio for a few more days!  It's going to be a whirlwind trip, but I am so looking forward to being back in the Midwest.  There is truly nothing like fall in Ohio.  We are planning to go to the pumpkin patch one day and I could not be more excited about that!




~* 5 *~

In prep for our road trip, we bought Haddie's convertible car seat today! After a ton of research, we ended up going with the Graco Extend2Fit.  Have you used this one?  Do you like it?  I went back and forth for a long time because we have been trying to use non-toxic products, which this is decidedly not.  All car seats have flame retardants on them.  There are a couple brands that use less toxic ones, but they are out of our budget.  I also figured it's probably not any worse than the pack 'n play she's been sleeping in for months sooo I bought it.  Other than that, it seems like a great car seat.  I've read a lot of great reviews and it seems especially good for tall babies (up to 5 inches extra leg room!).  It's also a slimmer-fit model of car seat which I'm hoping will give up some extra space in our car.  For an SUV, it is surprisingly small inside.

Linking up with Katie



Disclosure: this post includes Amazon affiliate links - I earn from qualifying purchases.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Blogtober & Weekending

Right after I hit publish on my post yesterday, I stumbled across #Blogtober, a challenge in which bloggers attempt to write every day during October.  Well, I know me and you know me, and we all know that this probably isn't going to happen, but I'm going to do my best to use this as an opportunity to get back into the habit of writing often.

One of the linkups I've always enjoying doing is Weekending with Biana so I'm hoping to make this a regular feature.  I missed the time to actually join the linkup this week, but that's ok! Without future ado...


Apparently this past weekend was the last one of September.  Who knew?  I don't even feel like September happened. Seriously, if it wasn't for our anniversary, I don't think I'd believe that it really happened.

I spent much of the weekend with an ice pack attached to my arm because I got stung by a hornet or something last Wednesday -- it's still not quite healed yet.   

THURSDAY

I know that the weekend didn't really start Thursday, but Friday was one of Bill's Fridays off.  He gets every other Friday off because he works an extra hour each day.  It's a great perk of his job, especially since Haddie was born.

We started our long weekend with dinner at Sakuramen with my cousin Nick!  He was in town for a conference. It was great to catch up with him!  Ramen is something Bill and I both love but that we have been hesitant to try since having Haddie -- it's really crowded, a little hot & stuffy, and we were worried about her being around the hot broth, but it all went fine.  She was literally a perfect angel and just sat smiling in her carseat the whole time.

FRIDAY

We didn't really do very much on Friday.  Bill took the the car into the shop in the morning and learned that we had to replace all 4 tires.  A fun expense we weren't expecting.

We spent the rest of the day just hanging out and relaxing.  We ordered Chinese for dinner (which we used to do all the time, but now it's a rare treat), played a game of Scrabble (I lost) and then watched a couple episodes of Ozark before bed.

SATURDAY

Saturday morning, Haddie and I headed into the city for a baby food event with Raised Real. Because we hadn't gotten the new tires on the car yet, we took the train.  It was her very first train ride! I've been nervous about taking her on the metro, but she did great and it wasn't as hard to navigate the stroller as I thought it might be.  We then had to walk about 10 blocks to the event and it was hot out so I was struggling.  It happened to be National Coffee Day, so I grabbed some Starbucks even though I was hot and it was delish.

The event itself was ok -- the company makes bags of pre-cut frozen meals for babies.  All you have to do is steam and blend them.  I was pretty excited to try the food, but it wasn't really that tasty to me or Haddie.  There were some odd ingredients.  I think we'll just stick to our basic recipes! There was a play area where she met a couple new friends and we took some pics.  Then it was back out into the heat for the trek back home.  All in all, it was fun to get out of the house and into the city, but not sure it was worth the metro commute.

Noooot my favorite picture of me lol


I ended up with a migraine for most of the rest of the day, so that sucked, but I whipped up one of my mom's easy dishes for dinner, which my family calls Choo-Choo Wheels.  Not even totally sure why - guessing because you use wheel-shaped pasta, my little brother called it that?  Anyways it's pasta wheels with ground beef cooked with onion, tomato sauce, ketchup, garlic salt, Italian seasoning, and Parmesan cheese (which I left off mine since I'm dairy free at the moment). It was the perfect comfort food!

SUNDAY

I woke up feeling much better and it's a good thing because I had shopping to do!  There's a sale near us called The Wee Sale and it's a semi-annual kids consignment sale.  I had gone to the sale on Wednesday for the new mom shop and got some good stuff, but I really struck gold on Sunday which was the 50% off sale. I got there around 9 and shopped for nearly 3 hours.  I had sooo much stuff in bags that I sorted through and pared down.  I ended up with the following: 21 shirts and dresses, 5 pairs of pants, 4 coats/jackets (including a beautiful fur winter coat, red pea coat, a really good quality jeans jacket, and a raincoat), 2 sleepers, her Halloween costume, 6 parenting books, 2 baby books, a tugboat toy for the bath, 2 brand new glass bottles, a Infantino baby carrier, and a bag full of babyproofing stuff for the house, all for $107.  I didn't add up all the stuff I got on Wednesday, but I got a babyfood maker, tons of long-sleeved onesies, sweatpants, outfits, 3 Halo sleep sacks, a beautiful brand new dress that we might use for her baptism, 2 vests, and more! I never have been into thrifting or used clothes, but I really love this particular sale.  Many of the moms shopping are the people who consigned their clothes there and they screen the items so you know you're not getting things that are too old or worn.  Babies grow out of things so quickly that it really helps to buy used.




I can't remember what else we did on Sunday, but I was pretty exhausted from the sale.

HADDIE'S HAPPENINGS

This weekend, Haddie had her first cold.  Luckily the worst of it only lasted 24 hours but it was so sad to see her struggling to breathe, especially while she nursed.  She had a fever and her eyes were all red.  She was croupy and sounded hoarse, but like I said, she got better fast!

She started pulling herself up and standing this weekend!  Not sure I'm ready for that yet, haha.



How was your weekend?

Monday, October 1, 2018

Changes and improvements

Hi there, internet friends, long time no talk! You will notice a few changes around here over the coming weeks. I figured the start of fall was the perfect time for a little re-launch.



The blog will be getting a face-lift at some point this week, so be on the lookout for that. More importantly, though, I suddenly had an existential crisis about blogging and social media. I've been wanting to write more and I feel like I have so much to say, but I suddenly became terrified of sharing so much of our private life online. There are a lot of bad people out there in the world. I've been hearing so many horror stories lately and I no longer feel comfortable freely posting pictures and stories of my baby (and family/friends) online.  So I was stuck at a crossroads, wanting to write more than ever, and grow my blog, but also wanting to protect my family and so I've come up with a few solutions:

1) I've removed the majority of pictures that show Haddie's full face and I won't be sharing any more in the future.  I always thought it was strange when bloggers did that but hey, hi, now I'm one of them. I am also trying to figure out watermarking/copywriting pics so you'll probably see those pop up on my pics in the near future.

I'm not even 100% sure that I want to keep using her real name -- I'm open to thoughts on this.  I've obviously been using her name on here, but I could change it to a nickname or even a fake name, as I've seen other bloggers do, though that seems a little inauthentic to me.  What do you think?

2) One of the other biggest changes is that I've made my Instagram private.  I took a look at my followers and realized there were literally hundreds of people that I had no idea who they were. A lot of them seemed like fake/bot accounts, too.  It really disturbed me that these total strangers could be doing god-knows-what with my pictures.  I have since removed these followers. If you were one of them, I'm sorry -- shoot me a DM and I'll add you back. As a solution to the blog/Instagram dilemma, I decided to start a blog account so that new readers can keep up with me there! I do hope that everyone will follow my new blog account.  There's nothing there yet, but it's @ourcapitallife. I think I'll start using the stories feature more on there than I do on my personal account.

(I've also started new Pinterest and Twitter accounts, but there's no content there yet either and I can't promise how much I'll use them, so I'm not even linking to them yet).

In addition to privacy changes, there will be some slight content changes, or as I'm thinking of them, improvements! I have historically blogged a running diary of my life and I will continue this format, while safeguarding our privacy a bit. I'm also going to mix in some additional material as well. I will be writing a lot about motherhood/parenting. I told myself I would never run a "mommy blog," so my goal is not to turn this into one, but it's kind of all I have going on right now, so naturally it's going to be the focus of the blog at least for now. It won't be the sole focus, though, so please don't abandon me if you hate mom blogs! I've been cooking a lot more so I want to share some recipes and tips. I want to start taking advantage of free things around the DC area, so expect more of that. I've been reading again finally and watching a ton of tv, so I have a lot of thoughts on what I've been reading/watching, if you're into that kind of thing.

I know I've said it before, but I plan to write more and this time I really mean it! Blogging has been a hobby of mine for a long time and it makes me so happy to have this little space on the world wide web.  I've made a lot of internet friends through it and I love reading blogs myself, so I want to pay it forward by showing up and writing.  Also, in this new season of my life, my blog is one thing that has stuck with me for the past 10 years (under various titles).  It's cathartic for me to write and it's familiar, like an old friend that I'm happy to reconnect with.  I just looked and I've only blogged 6 times all year.  That's inexcusable!! So, expect more from me, and feel free to call me out if I'm quiet for too long!

With this mini-relaunch, it's a great time for me to ask you, what do you want to read about?  Do you like watching Instagram stories? Do you have thoughts on masking Haddie's identity?
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