Mila Led Weaning

 A week or so ago I made a facebook post about how I had no idea that at nearly 1, Mila would still be nursing as frequently as a newborn. Most days I still nurse her as many as 8 times before its even noon. I have been determined to nurse til 2 because that’s what the World Health Organization recommends (here). But I also want to get back to my life. I cant be trapped under a nursing/napping baby for a whole nother year. Yes part of me would like to but I have another daughter and a husband who need my time and attention too and I would like some time to myself.
 So I made a cry for help and asked friends what to do. And I got tons of great information. Some conflicting. I know I have friends who supplement and others who pump for a lot of feedings and I also have friends who feel very strongly about always nursing on demand. It was awesome getting to get advice from so many different moms with so many different experiences. 
 After reading and reflecting and going with what felt right for us, I am most impressed with the “dont offer dont refuse” method. Its under the title “weaning” on the Dr. Sears site which first scared me. I don’t want to WEAN!!! But once I realized that weaning is a long long journey and not something I’ll be doing over night (like I did with lucy, sorry darling, mama just didn’t know any better)  I realized this really is a good fit.
 We haven’t adopted all of his suggestions (you can read HERE) just the small change of no longer offering. Just nursing when Mila asks for it. Immediately I noticed a huge change. Sometimes she comes up and just wants to sit with me. I before offered her nursing anytime she came near me. I didn’t even consider, maybe she is just stop by to say hi and get a quick hug. When she wants to nurse she lets that be known. She clearly asks for “mum mums”. I was shocked at how rarely she was actually asking for it. So much so that I feared that I may be jumping the gun and she may not be getting enough nutrients.
 But the opposite is the case. She is feeding far less frequently, for longer more satisfying feedings. She is nursing off both sides in one feeding which she has NEVER done. And when out and about she now can go 3 hours without asking to nurse so long as we have a nice long feeding from both sides.
 I thought I would need to start offering more solid foods but she’s actually eating fewer. She and I both seem much happier with nursing now. Now if only I could get her to stop pinching and hair pulling and biting me. But going from like 20 short feedings to 5 or 6 feedings a day is victory enough. Once again I am so glad I talked to all my mom friends. Better than any book or doctor out there!

Time to Move

 I’ve been really slacking on blogging. And really everything in my life. I have hardly had the energy or drive to get out of bed and put pants on. I’m so insanely stressed out. We are now frantically, with little money saved, trying to move before Lucy starts school in September. sooo like 4-5 weeks. 
 Our building was once cute and charming and has now just gone to shit thanks to a landlord who just didn’t give a shit. And every new place we look at has 30+ people attend the open house and no one wants the family with young kids and not impressive credit over the young couple with 2 incomes and great credit. So we just keep looking at places, falling in love, and secretly knowing we probably wont get the place.
 I have started to scale down things in our house and pack and organize which means there isn’t much to instagram or blog about unless you wanna see me go through my junk drawer throwing away old phone chargers and sunglass cases that I lost the sunglasses to. And what my living room looks like with wall art taken down. So yaa….

This summer just isn’t what I had in mind…

3 Day Vacay

 My sister turned 30 and all she wanted for her birthday was for Lucy to come down and visit her in Portland. So my mom took her down there for a 3 day vacation and left us with her car (we normally only travel by foot). I know this makes me sound like an awful mother, but my first thoughts were “OMG YESSSS YESSS SWEET BABY JESUS YESS!!!!!!” because once you have 2 kids, having just one child to look after feels like so much freedom. 
 Now don’t get me wrong. I love Lucy. So much it hurts. But she is a handful and gets about 90% of my attention during the day. Yes Mila is the one strapped to my hip but she is so quiet and calm. Lucy is the one I’m constantly interacting with and doing something for and taking some place. 
 Day one was awesome. Record shopping, coffee shops and going out to get ice cream. Leisurely walking around the city without any “I’m bored. I don’t want to go there. But I hate chicken YUCK! I don’t want to listen to that record..” That night we relaxed and watched a movie together. It was AWESOME! 
 Day two was a bit more responsible. We slept in, got a late start to the day and took care of some errands. But when we were walking home I passed a wading pool and the ice cream man was there. And I wanted so badly to be there with Lucy. Then in the evening the house just felt awkwardly quiet. We watched another movie and got take out but I still just wanted Lucy to come back.
 Now it is day 3 and I don’t even want to get off the couch. Whats the point? We keep talking about going to a park or the beach but if it isn’t for Lucy to have fun I just see us standing there with our phones putting filters on some instagram photo…. killing time til she comes home.
 Maybe Lucy sometimes treats us like she is the center of the universe because in our family she often is. I hadn’t realized just how much of our daily activities centered around her. And it isn’t a bad thing, she is 5! She has the rest of her life to work for other people, we like doing things for her. And nothing seems as fun without her here to enjoy it with us. I cant imagine what Justin and I would do if both girls were gone with grandma. Yes going out for a romantic dinner and then catching a movie would be nice, but having fun hanging out with Lucy and Mila is pretty hard to compete with.
 I’m glad we had this time to relax and remember how easy life is with just one little one. But it has been very eye opening to me. I cant wait for Lucy to come back. I wanna play with her doll house and hear about the toppings she got on her fro-yo and tell me a story about something funny my sister did. 

Summer Playlist- Updated

So the days of trying to prove how cool I am are by how obscure and rare the music  I listen it is, are long behind me. Now I just listen to what I think sounds good. I already posted this but I added some stuff after a weekend full of record shopping. Also yes I realized some of this was released  like 3 years ago and you might know. But this is honest what we listen to non stop.

The Honey Trees-To Be With You
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Sketer Davis- Sunglasses
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She and Him- I Could’ve Been Your Girl

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CHER- Sunny

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Lana Del Rey- National Anthem

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Lisa Loeb- Stay
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Mama Cass- Dream a Little Dream
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Kate Nash- O My God

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Eliza Doolittle- Money Box
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Millie Smalls- My Boy Lollipop
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The Sling Diaries- Voice

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I was a painfully shy child. So much so that I cried if people even looked at me. I still feel a lot of anxiety when I know I’ll be in a social situation.  I fight through it, but by the time I get home I just crash because it’s so exhausting having to keep it together. Though, I learned early on that I couldn’t embrace loneliness. At a job interview or when I worked as a sales rep, my career depended on how well I could communicate with a stranger for 10-15 minutes. Losing control for even a moment and turning bright red or getting too fidgety could mean not having money to pay rent.
Mila is a woman of few words. To be fair she isn’t even 1 yet and her vocabulary is limited to “mum-mum” and “da da”. But, as I’ve mentioned before, she is an observer. Some babies have so much to express. But Mila is most often slung to my hip silently watching the world around her. We sit in the coffee shop, and she doesn’t fuss or yell or babble. Instead she quietly, gazes out the window and watches the city worker hosing off the cobblestone in Pioneer Square.

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When we take the Light Rail, we always keep to ourselves. Still strangers approach. They come up and begin to try and charm their way into Mila’s heart with something along the lines of “Oh hello little baby! what a sweet baby!“and are only greeted with a stern look and a raised eyebrow from Mila. She doesn’t feel the pressure to meet their energy and smile as big as they do. She hasn’t been taught social norms. So on her behalf I say something to imply she is either tired or fussy. When neither is the case. Mila is simply genuine.
I wish I could let go of the pressure to be polite. When a stranger says something rude or invades my personal space, I anxiously smile it off as to not offend anyone. I’m that sucker who gets caught on the phone with telemarketers for 20 minutes because I can’t bring myself to cut them off. If it were Mila, she would have just hung up the moment she got bored, thrown the phone and started chewing on the tv remote. Ok, maybe it’s unrealistic to be as carefree as an infant. But I’m sure there is a balance somewhere between the two.voice4a

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This post is a part of the Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries

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7-13-10

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Justin and I got married at The Municipal Courts of Seattle on July 13th 2010.
This wasn’t our original wedding plan. We had gotten engaged the previous Fall. I’d come home from work sick. Justin put on a DVD of the Office, and asked me if I wanted to play monopoly. There beside the thimble and race car was an engagement ring.
I was working as a bridal consultant at the time and so the planning got real serious real quick. We put down a deposit on a venue at the, now closed, Chapel Bar where we got cocktails during the week often. My boss at work began sketching up vintage inspired dresses. And we began collecting pre 1940 tobacco tins for center pieces…we had 3 different inspiration boards in our living room. 3.
Then in the beginning of July we got our wedding bands in from the jeweler in New York. And it hit us. That we didn’t care at all anymore about this ridiculous wedding. We didn’t want to have to spend half a grand on artisan cheese. And I couldn’t bring myself to pin another photo of a chalkboard. We knew we didn’t want a wedding anymore. We wanted a future, together. And we just wanted to wear our bands and be husband and wife.
So we called off everything in a Facebook announcement. And told our friends to just meet us at the Chapel next Tuesday, if they wanted to (those photos are all on my facebook). And Justin bought a suit at H&M. And I got my dress on a sale rack at Nordstrom for $70. It was made out of silk and had pockets. Sold.

When the “big day” came it was business as usual. My friend Allison came over. We smoked cigarettes. Ordered pizza. I painted her nails canary yellow and my own charcoal grey. Justin put on the Office on tv. And we just hung out until we went to the courthouse.
We lucked out and got the court room with an epic view of the city.
My sister recognized the judge, typical, and said he was very kind. And he was. But the poor guy could not figure out how to say Wojslaw. So I giggled uncontrollably through the vows.
We then just walked around downtown and found a cab to meet up with friends at the bar. We had a great evening with those we are closest to, getting $5 martini drunk. This bar for happy hour did like 35 different martinis all for $5. A friend bought us a mass of cake to cut. We relaxed and just did what we would normally do on a Tuesday.
Then, when I could hardly even stand, we cabbed it the 6 blocks home. Ordered Amante’s. Like one of everything from Amantes (hey we could live like kings now that we weren’t blowing a ton of money on a huge wedding). Then Justin and I just sat on the floor watching the Office, over eating at 3am and laughing our asses off.
I wouldn’t do it any other way. We had a great day. Zero stress. Very relaxed. And then we booked a one week long trip to Vegas for the Honeymoon. The smell of sunscreen, coconut and nail polish will always make me smile and remember how fun we had that week.
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Imperial Barber Products Review- Guest Post

 For Father’s Day I begged and pleaded for you guys to help me sweeten Justin’s day up by voting for him to win the Imperial Barber Products giveaway. He won! Thank you so much for the support you guys. It came and he is so pleased with their products I suggested he write a guest post reviewing it. So here it is…

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I’d like to start off with a huge thank you to everyone that follows my wife’s blog! Back in June, the guys at Imperial Barber Products held a Father’s Day contest and many of you were awesome and voted for the picture of Lucy and myself. The picture ended up winning and I received a Field Shave Kit in the mail earlier this week. For those unaware, Imperial Barber Products are an American made line of premium grooming and shaving products designed by Barbers. Check them out at http://www.imperialbarberproducts.com.

Now for the review..

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The first step was unwrapping Imperial’s Glycerin Face/Shave Soap and using it to wash any dirt and oil away. This soap is made with pure vegetable glycerin and infused with vitamin E. It is sold as unscented, but to me it seemed to have a very crisp, clean sort of scent. It reminded me of trips to the Barber Shop. It washed away easily without leaving any residue and didn’t cause any irritation meaning I’ll be using this daily from here on out.
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Next I moved on to Imperial’s Pre-Shave Oil. I’ve never used a Pre-Shave Oil while shaving, but I have to say I’m really pleased with it. It comes packaged in a small bottle with an eye-dropper. I put about 3 drops of the essential oil blend into my hands and massaged it on to my face. The lavender scent isn’t as strong as I worried it might be which was a pleasant surprise. Imperial states that this is used to reduce skin irritation and minimize cuts and nicks that could be caused while shaving. Now that I’ve covered all the areas I’ll be shaving, it’s back to the Glycerin Face/Shave soap..

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After slightly wetting the natural Boar Bristle shave brush provided, I was able to work up a surprisingly nice lather from the Glycerin Face/Shave soap. The brush is lightweight and meant to be used as a travel option, however it is still high quality and great to work with.ibpx3

             Shaving with my usual razor..I can definitely feel the difference with the Shave Oil and Shave Soap combination. It’s definitely feeling like a closer shave, however shaving is an easy process and no issues with any nicks or cuts.ibpx2
Last but not least is my absolute favorite of the set. Imperial’s Bergamot Aftershave! The scent of this stuff is amazing. Imperial should bottle and sell a cologne version. Infused with Macadamia Nut oil, it conditions and cools your skin and is the perfect way to end your shave.

I can’t say enough about these guys and the quality of their products. They’ll definitely have my business now and in the future.