Monday, August 22, 2011


To say that I am becoming a bit unraveled would be an understatement.

Tuesday morning, at mom group, I left a note on another mom's car with my phone number. Her son, William, is only a few days younger than Paxton, and when I realized I had to leave suddenly, she was in the restroom, so I did the creepy thing and left a note on her car (I figured the only Saab in the parking lot would have to be the Saab she mentioned at group). She called me maybe... two hours later and left a voicemail.

I haven't called back. I feel horrible about this. You don't leave someone a creepy note asking if they'd like to get together outside of mom group and then not call them back.

The best part is that I did it because I thought school started this week and I wasn't sure I could make it to mom group anymore. Surprise! School starts next week, and I can either call her today and beg forgiveness or I can show up at mom group tomorrow morning looking like a creeper who doesn't call back.

In my defense, I've spent the past week running around, attempting to get all of my loose ends tied up before school... and, in the process, my nerves have become even more frayed.

I learned that I'll have to complete four more semesters of undergraduate study before I can get my BA--thanks to the German language. I am really expected to be fluent in German in four semesters. Hey... whatever (eventually) gets me into the graduate program, right?

I went clothes shopping and tried to find school clothes to cover my (giant) butt. I weigh less than I did before I got pregnant, but am magically two sizes bigger. As you can imagine, it's doing wonders my self esteem--yay, I am so thin, but so large! What?

I did a whole bunch of Avon work, including--gasp--getting off my nervous, antisocial duff to ring some doorbells and meet my neighbors. A feat that I will have to repeat in a couple of hours, actually.

I went to therapy (completely neurotic, remember?), cooked dinners, ran errands, had family visit over the weekend, set up my financial aid package (I think... if I did it correctly), cleaned out my car, fought with my mom (I love my mom) and did a whole bunch of other things that were not calling William's mom.

Sadly, I don't think I'm getting much of a break this week, either... but I will make that phone call.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Avon Calling

My husband and I never have money. This is a fact of life. The couple hundred out of his paycheck left after our rent and bills vanishes after groceries, prescriptions and gasoline.

So I started looking for a job.

I had a number of strikes against me:

1. The economy sucks.
2. I'm a full-time student.
3. I have a baby.
4. My husband and I have one car.
5. I use public transportation to get to school and back.

Try explaining to a potential employer that you need part-time hours worked around classes in the morning and the evening on different days, then add that you might not be able to work sometimes because of you'll need to make different arrangements for childcare every week and then mention that you might be late anyway because you will either be taking the bus/train or you'll need to go pick up your car first. Oh... and you need to go pick your husband with the car at 5 PM, or maybe 5:30 PM, or maybe 6 PM, but you won't actually know until you get there with the car at 5 PM.

Yeah. Small wonder I can't find employment, right?

I'd been thinking about signing up with one of those work-at-home companies. You know, like Scentsy or Pampered Chef or Tupperware or something. I ended up choosing Avon.

Why Avon? Well, when I was little, my mom had an Avon lady who came the house. I liked her. Also, there's a Mary Kay lady around here with one those stupid pink Cadillacs, and she drives like crap. I don't want to associate with someone who drives like crap (and I like Avon's products better, anyway).

I met with my area leadership rep yesterday and officially signed up. My mother immediately bought $80 with of product from me, because she is an Avon addict (that might have also played into my decision to go with Avon). (By the way, my first campaign sales goal was $50. See, I am already a success.)

I'm actually pretty excited to see how this goes. The prospect of being a WAHM is nice--the ability to have a job but not worry about childcare or transportation, the ability to work around when Paxton needs fed/changed/bathed/entertained, and the ability to be able to manage myself (because let's face it, I am not easily ordered around) is very appealing. I'd be nice to make loads of money with it, but I'd be happy with just an extra hundred bucks.

If anyone is interested in buying some Avon, my website is here: ! Avon isn't just makeup, it's also skin care products, perfumes, jewelry, accessories, gifts, clothes, shoes... all sorts of things. Check it out! You get free shipping on your order over $30 right now, and orders ship immediately. :)

Monday, August 1, 2011

Mommy Must-Haves

There are a few things that everyone knows you need to get when you're expecting. A car seat, for example, because hospitals will not let you take your baby home without one (and even if you get around that rule by delivering at home, let's face it--you're probably going to get in a car sometime within the next two years). Diapers--disposable orcloth, it doesn't matter, you will need diapers. I suppose youcould get by without a stroller or bottles if you were really, really dedicated to babywearing and breastfeeding.

I'd like to share a few things that I'd be helpless without, but are not really considered "necessities". In my opinion, every expecting parents should run out and buy these things, because they are just that useful.

The first item I'd like to share is the Bright Starts Comfort & Harmony Cradling Bouncer, pictured above in the "biscotti" color. It's like a little baby-size papasan chair that vibrates and plays music. (Although to be honest, the music is kind of annoying at first.) We originally weren't going to register for a bouncer (the nice ones, like this one, are a bit pricey at $50-60) but I'm glad we did... we actually did get ours as a gift from my husband's older sister. I picked this one because it is a little more plush than the cheaper ones out there, and it comes with a toy bar and a special insert for little babies that supports the head, neck and back. It takes two "C" batteries and the battery life is pretty good--in three months, we've only had to change them once, and the bouncer has gotten near-constant use.

Like I mentioned in my previous post, for a little over a month, this bouncer was the only thing that let my husband and I get any sleep at night. For that reason alone, it's worth the money.

Next on the list: Aden + Anais Swaddleplus Wraps. You can buy these in a four-pack for about $35, and they come in several different colors and patterns.

Now, $35 for four blankets may seem a little extreme. I understand that. But--trust me when I say this--these are the most useful blankets in the entire world. I keep meaning to buy more of them.

These 100% lightweight cotton blankets are slightly stretchy and great for
swaddling (although it will take several attempts before you're any good at it). They are also great for pretty much every other use out there. I use them to wipe drool and formula off of Paxton's chin and I fold them in half to sling over my shoulder when I burp him--since they cover more area than a burp cloth or a receiving blanket, I almost never end up wearing formula. I sling one over the carseat or stroller for shade when we go outside (they are surprisingly large when unfolded) and fold one up to tuck around Pax's legs in his carseat to keep the sun off of him--the blanket is so lightweight that I'm not worried about him overheating. Don't just take my word for it--every mom in my Tuesday-morning mom group has some of these awesome blankets.

I'd like to talk about two very similar toys next.

The first item I'd like to mention is a series of links. Several different companies make these (the ones pictured are by Infantino, but I also know that similar ones are manufactured by Bright Starts and that there are probably even more out there.) They easily attach to the handle of a car seat and can be used by themselves or to attach other toys to a carseat.

Paxton doesn't really care for them hanging off of the carseat handle, but he loves to grip them and try to put them in his mouth when they're all linked up and jumbled together. The links are the perfect size for tiny hands to hold. They help build fine motor skills by giving him a lot of different textures to grip--some of the links are smooth, some are squiggly and others have ridges--and they are brightly colored so he has something to look at and examine.

The other toy is one that is a real no-brainer: First Keys by The First Years. I picked these up at the grocery store (of all places) for two bucks and they were worth the money. Pax loves to pick them up, shake them around and put them in his mouth--and it's way better than having him drool all over my (very real, very metal, and--in the case of my VW keyfob--very expensive) keys.

These keys come with a little red ring (not pictured) for easy attachment to a carseat handle or the strap of a diaper bag.

You can buy all of this lovely stuff at Babies "R" Us (which, for the record, I still loathe). The bouncer retails there for $54.99. I got the Infantino "Ring-a-links" on sale for $2.99, normal retail price at BRU is $3.99. The Aden + Anais blankets are sold at both BRU and Target for $34.99. First Keys by The First Years retail for $1.99.

Now, go, new moms! Buy this stuff!*

*No, I didn't get paid to endorse all this stuff. I really just love it all that much!