Monday, November 23, 2009

No Malls: Priceless

Is there anything worse than shopping with children? I find it a form of torture.

Thank goodness for the internet. I was talking with friends yesterday over tea about Have you heard about it? I was shocked that they hadn't. I love Etsy. Have you been there? Check out (click here). There is also a link on the right hand side of this page. My sister makes jewelry and custom mommy/grandma bracelets. They are beautiful.

I have bought jewelry for myself and gifts for my family. And check out the area where you can buy items for pennies. Go to the jewelry section and click on "items priced lower to higher" It is called "Pay it forward." People are giving away their jewelry. Really!!! And in this economy, you can't beat the prices on Etsy. You can find items at every price point.

So, go pour yourself some coffee or tea and settle in for some shopping. You will make some artist's day, support a small business and make someone's holiday a little more unique. And shopping without hearing "Mom, I have to go to the bathroom." Priceless.

And to kick off your holiday shopping, visit my sister's Etsy website. Let me know with a comment which item is your favorite. Each comment will be entered for MY favorite bracelet (hint, hint Lara). And if you mention this contest on Facebook and let me know, you will get two entries. Good luck and happy shopping! And if you'd like to see Lara's work in person, she will be at the SECPTA Holiday Shopping Spree on Tuesday, November 24 at the Solon Community Center from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. There will be many, many tables set up with all types of vendors. They will also have a bake sale. Yummmm!!! It is a great night to cross some items off of your shopping list.

Don't forget to leave a comment to enter my contest for this gorgeous bracelet. Deadline to enter is December 5. Please make sure I know who you are and how to reach you!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


I have some smart relatives and some not so smart relatives.

One of my smart relatives is a financial planner for extremely wealthy people. He has said that the number one thing you can do to protect your wealth is to stay married. Really? Think about it.

Another smart relative said that taking trips with his wife is cheaper than divorce. Yep.

And my wonderful mother-in-law has encouraged us since our first baby to take a trip four months after the baby is born to reconnect. We've not always had extra money to take these trips (thank you Visa) but we feel that it is absolutely required that we get away and become husband and wife again. We are first husband and wife. If we take care of that, the rest falls into place.

So after Ryan, we went to Vegas.

After Kyle, we went to Miami.

And we just got back from Cancun.

We spend the first day sleeping and then napping some more. The stress falls away and we relax. It is the best. I am back and I am energized again. I can get through this baby stage. When I am near tears with a newborn, I count down the days until I can go on my little babymoon.

Not everyone can fly to Cancun or Vegas. I totally get that and count my blessings. But, you can BEG a friend to watch your kids for a whole night and return the favor. Send the kids away and spend the night in your house alone. It is magical for the marriage. Be a tourist in your own hometown. Eat alone without having to get up to get the ketchup. Finish a conversation. And remember why you said those two little words "I do" many years ago. You'll never regret the investment in your marriage and neither will your children.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to my sister and her husband, my aunt and my wonderful in-laws for watching the clan. And to the people worried about Elle not sleeping, she is sleeping like a baby. She gets up only once a night, maybe twice. She is sleeping better than my other two ever did. I am just tired. I am just ready to move on. I know she will sleep through the night someday. Just complaining...

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Sweet baby Elle, I am tired. So tired. You are four months old and am hitting the wall. I am begging you to sleep. Please. I am not sure I can go on.

Last week, I wrote a sappy post about how I will soon miss waking up every night for her bottle. Not sure what I was thinking because last night, I was ready to cry out of desperation. If you have had kids, you know how tired you can get after four months of not getting sleep. You are a walking zombie. Even if I nap, I can't feel normal.

So today, I am heading to the grocery store and purchasing cereal. It may not help but it cannot make it worse. I will feel better that somehow it may help the cause.

I'd write a longer post but I swear I can't think straight I am so tired. I am off to eat an English muffin and then I am taking a nap. I am sure I will miss having a newborn someday when I am well rested. That's why God gives you grandchildren, right? Night, night.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Dear Eva,

How do I begin to tell you how right you were? You encouraged me to have that third child. You told me it would balance out our family. You told me I'd never regret it. You were so right.

I wasn't the best new mom. It kicked my butt. I barely made it through the newborn stage with Ryan. I was in shock. I felt that it was torture. I cried through the late night feedings because I was so tired. I wasn't sure how I could keep going. And then I got pregnant quickly with Kyle and wondered how I could add another baby to my life. I was barely hanging on.

So when we talked that beautiful night and you told me that on your death bed, your last regret would be not having a third child, you sold me. My husband stood there and shook his head. He knew I was sold.

Elle wakes up every night around 3 a.m. I shuffle down the hall to her room. I pick her up and soak in her beautiful baby smell. And instead of crying out of desperation, I sometimes catch myself tearing up knowing that these days are almost over. She will soon eat cereal and baby food. She will soon sleep through the night most night. And I can't believe that I am the same mother who would have given anything to end the late night feedings for Ryan.

Elle has given me a new perspective as a mother. I now understand how sweet it all is. If I would have ended my journey with Kyle, I would not have such a soft, warm spot in my heart.

So, Eva, thank you. I am a better mother for being the mother of my beautiful baby Elle.

Forever grateful,

I'm Not Talking About It, I'm Just Saying...