Showing posts with label parenting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label parenting. Show all posts

Sunday, August 24, 2014


Obviously you can tell that the regularly scheduled programming 'round these parts has been far less regular and far more irregular. 

I was very excited to find August was here upon us, which means for us as a family super slow days and plenty of time to just. get. stuff. done. already.  For me that included making my sewing room super organized and efficient, getting clothing ready to sell or give away, and sitting down and posting here as often as possible.

But, bam, August 1st arrives, and while waiting for August to come I realized something else had not come the way it was supposed to, so on that Friday morning, I asked my husband to stop at the CVS on the way home and buy me a pregnancy test.

And because I have already had many pregnancies under my belt, I knew that there was no way it would be negative, but since most ob/gyn offices won't invite you to come on in to discuss your pregnancy without a positive test, I took one as soon as enough time had passed for it to be anything but a baby on the way.

Yep.  I was pregnant. 

We were never not okay with having a fourth child, we just had it in our head that we shouldn't, and we took the time to ensure we weren't going to have a fourth.  Well, my OB said that as women age, you can actually ovulate earlier, and so even if you are fairly sure of your NFP signs (we are devout Catholics and do NFP--more on that here), "advanced maternal age" moms will ovulate earlier.  Oh, is that right?

So upon realizing our pregnancy, and sitting a bit slack-jawed, we both really came around to the idea and were thrilled at having a new little one in our lives.

Then Sunday, August 3 came, along with a bit of blood.  Scared out of my mind and sure I was losing the baby, I told my hubby.  He looked pretty crestfallen, too.  Then the bleeding stopped completely, and Dr. Google told me the baby may be okay.

So Monday comes and I go to see the doctor, and all looks good and she seemed not too concerned about the blood, but told me to watch for it in the future.  She also took my bloodwork, and by the next day I found my HCG levels were very high, and my progesterone was a bit low (but still in the "acceptable" limits).  She made me get some progesterone to help me and the baby, and all was good. 

For a week.  The next Tuesday (the 12th) at night I once again started bleeding, and while it was not a huge amount, it never stopped.  I called the doctor and she said to get an ultrasound the next morning and see what's going on...

Of course we immediately scheduled something the next morning, and nervous as hell, I walk into the ultrasound room, and as quickly as she got the gel on my belly, we saw the heartbeat.  I started weeping in happiness that the baby had a heartbeat.

The ultrasound showed the bleed near the baby, though, and they told me the doctor at my practice would let me know more about what to do.

But because we had seen the heartbeat and evidence of where the bleed was coming from, we figured we would be okay, especially if I took it easy and didn't do too much. 

I made sure the office wanted me to keep my appointment for Tuesday, August 19, and they confirmed that they still wanted to see me. 

After seeing the baby and the sweet little heartbeat, the bleeding continued, never especially heavy, but there was evidence that maybe everything wasn't okay, including clots and cramping, but Dr. Google said a lot of women had those, too, and their babies were just fine.

Armed with that knowledge, I went into the appointment ready to go.  Well, it wasn't so great.  Turns out my doctor was really uncomfortable with the amount I kept bleeding, and the cramping made her unsure of my pregnancy's state, so she said to steel myself for a 50/50 chance of miscarrying the baby.  And she made me go in for another ultrasound, "ASAP."

The next available appointment was the next day, and through it all, I was fairly convinced that everything would be okay, and if it wasn't we would see a baby without a heartbeat (which would be awful, obviously). 

What we didn't expect was that the ultrasound tech would see NOTHING in the uterus, no sac, no baby and the heartbeat, nothing. 

Turns out that I had miscarried and hadn't even known it. 

I was STUNNED.  I literally couldn't talk. 

See I have miscarried before.  TWICE...both before Rex came along.  And both of those didn't show up as miscarriages until the ultrasound showed either a baby with no heartbeat or an empty sac (blighted ovum).  The miscarriage I had with the baby with no heartbeat was HORRIBLE, PAINFUL, AWFUL, and frankly was the reason why I was petrified at the prospect of having another one.  So to have a miscarriage and not even notice it was happening (seriously, very little pain, not that much blood, etc.) seemed unreal.

Finding out made me sad and blue, of course.  The kids were super sad.  (We told them only because of the heartbeat, in the past, for us anyhow, heartbeat equals kid is cooking properly.)  I wasn't sure how to process the events that had been swirling around me for the past half a month.  It was all too much. 

I will never regret getting pregnant for the sixth time.  The potential of an extra baby in the house was thrilling, if a bit scary financially and physically. 

I have no great ending to this story, except I really wanted to tell it.  Humanity shows its greatness in times of grief, and if this story helps someone else out there with one of their own struggles, then I am happy to have told the tale.

I also wanted a record of the baby that was and then was no longer with us.  And by telling this baby's story, I have told the story of my other babies that didn't make it. 

I know that I am now back to being semi-close to normal, and progress has restarted on plans I had to put off in early August.  I feel ready to go back to what we were meant to do, instead of planning for something we weren't thinking we would do, but returning to that was HARD since the new plans were more than okay by me. 

I guess that's all.  I wish I had more to share, but maybe this is just enough. 

I will be back tomorrow with more frivolity and silliness and clothing and stuff, but I couldn't restart that without writing the above.

Monday, August 11, 2014

OOTD/Review: Chepstow for Church.

I promised in the "catch of the day" sale post I wrote this morning that I would write up a review of the Chepstow top, which I happened to wear to church last night, so perfect timing for the sale, huh?  ;-)

First up is the ootd portion followed by the review of the top.

Day: Sunday, August 10, 2014.

Where: Church.

Ease of Wear: (3.75 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.)  The Chepstow top is fab.  If my skirt had been as comfortable as it, this would have easily been an outfit in the "4" range.  But yeah, stupid J. Crew skirt I bought when I was at my smallest.  It fits, but it is very fitted. 

(That said, I have spent my summer in luscious stretch jersey and swimwear, so maybe my body is just rebelling at being buttoned up so tightly.  LOL.)

The Penny Loafers (review here) are still available at Boden, btw.  These are from the spring and are currently in clearance.  As of this morning, clearance items qualify for free shipping, too, but like the regular season stuff, you have to make sure your basket is above $50 to receive free shipping.

Cool Factor: (3.75 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.)  Due to the constraints of weather (warm and humid) and where I was going (church), I couldn't wear this top the way it would look best, with skinny pants or a pair of shorts.  But that said, it was a perfectly lovely outfit for church. 

Anecdote from the Day:  My kids have been "off" at church all summer long.  It's like once school was over (and the weekly school mass as a reminder of how to act for Sunday mass), they were like, "hey, let's act up, 'cause you know.  MASS."  Ugh.  Well, an incentive of...wait for it...chocolate milk did the trick.  Aw, I love it.  I really am not sure I am looking forward to the days when chocolate milk doesn't work as an incentive. 

Chepstow Top.  Size 6.  As you can see from the first and second photos, this size fits exactly right for my frame.  The yoke sits exactly where it should on the shoulders and the length of the sleeves is nice and long on my (pretty long) arms.  It also isn't too loose through the bodice, which could easily make this top read maternity.

So like I said in my written review this am, go with your knitwear size at Boden.  I rarely wear anything other than a 6 at Boden in their sweaters, and choosing this size in the Chepstow worked well.

I do wear a smaller size in Boden's jersey tops, a size 4, because those items inherently have more stretch than this top, which is made from a knit, sure, but a knit with not much stretch (it is a lyocell for those of you wondering).

Back View.  Unlike a lot of tops, I didn't have the "sway back/big butt" pooling of fabric, which is awesome.  It is because there is a flow to the drape of the top, and is not a fitted tee.

Chepstow Top

Chepstow Top. Stocks are healthy, but some sizes are on backorder.  If you think you would wear it starting now and would wear it throughout the season, you could buy it now and not feel guilty about not waiting.  As of right now, it doesn't appear to be selling out, but it may have been like this last August with this top, and it still ended up selling out.  Hmm.

Okay, that's it, have any of you tried this one? 

See you all tomorrow with another round of "catches."

Friday, June 27, 2014

OOTDs: Silky Vintage and a Colorful Maxi.

Quick Reminder: Today is the last day you can save 30% off everything at Boden.  (It ends midnight tonight.)  I wrote more on it here at this post.  Hopefully this means the big clearance sale will start soon.  :-)

Day: Saturday, June 21, 2014.

Where: Rex's end of season baseball party and birthday dinner (mine!!!) with a friend.

Ease of Wear: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.)  I got frustrated with the shorts because they fit but they get wrinkly so fast. (They are a cotton stretch sateen that is lightweight, so they wrinkle when you breathe on them.)  The lighter color shows the wrinkles, so even though they feel great on, I am acutely aware of the wrinkles and my OCD goes into overdrive.  LOL.  I really need to get over it.

The Silky Vintage top (here at Boden, review of the green floral version here) is fab, though, so comfortable and easy to wear.  After realizing that the Selina dress in the same color was not going to work for me (latest review on that one here), I decided two Silky Vintage tops would work instead.  Probably better for my lifestyle, too, honestly.

Cool Factor: (3.75 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) I received a lot of compliments on my outfit, especially the combo of the Silky Vintage top in the party floral and its matching sister bag, the Chelsea Clutch (here).  Of course I live in the land where Lilly Pulitzer pink and green flamingo dresses are a very good thing, so take all that with a grain of salt, especially if you are not very preppy. ;-)

Anecdote from the Day:  The house we went to for Rex's end of season baseball party had this insanely pretty pool.  It was finished with these deep grey slate tiles and the color of the water was this gorgeous teal blue.  Since I am used to the bright sky blue you see in regular neighborhood pools, it was a nice change of pace.  I immediately wished we could have a pool like that.  (In our millionaire dreams, of course.

Day: Sunday, June 22, 2014.

Where: CW's friend's birthday party.

Ease of Wear: (4.5 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.)  Hi, pretty Boden jersey maxi dress!  It is nice to bring you out again for another year!  :-)  You are still as comfortable as I remember you being in years past, and as usual, the brightly colored graphic was an instant mood lifter.

(BTW, I wore another one today to Angus's Little Gym class--this green and purple one--and a friend confessed wanting a Boden maxi dress in her cart--I assume this one--and I told her to go for it.  Of course I enabled her...I really think she needs to be in on the secret of the "almost as comfortable as pjs" dress.)

Cool Factor: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) Simple colorful summer easy dressing.  Pretty cool for me. 

Anecdote from the Day:  Rex acted up at the lunch we all went to, so we had to take his opportunity to go to the movie with his dad away, so while CW and I played at her friend's party, Rex had to sit around with his daddy and brother doing nada instead.  What made it worse for him is that we were already on our way to the movie/party at lunch (I was going to go to the party while they were at the movie), so he couldn't even do nada at home, instead he had to do nada at the local Wal-Mart.  Sigh.  But I bet he won't do that again.  Let's hope, anyhow.

Okay, that's it for now.  I hope everyone is set to have a wonderful weekend!

Link to sale...remember the 30% off ends tonight at midnight:
30% Off EVERYTHING plus Free Shipping

Thursday, May 29, 2014

OOTDs: Silky Vintage and Made by Me.

Hey, all!  Happy Thursday!  :-)  Just a quick reminder before I start that the 30% off dresses promotion ends tomorrow night over at Boden(At least that is what I believe will happen since the sale started last Saturday morning.  I would be more than fine if Boden made me a liar by continuing it into the weekend.)

Okay, in honor of May and the "Me-Made May" phenomena that happens all over the sewing blog world, I thought I would parade out five recent outfits that feature one item that was made by me, in conjunction with a bunch of non-made by me items, of course, since I have only been doing this sewing thing for so long.  I expect that maybe in a few years I could actually feature entire ensembles made by me, but I ain't there yet.

Day: Sunday, May 25, 2014.

Where: Angus's friend's birthday party.

Ease of Wear: (3.5 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.) The Silky Vintage Top (currently at 25% off here) is very comfortable and I am stoked I bought the size 6 since it was fitted enough in the upper bodice while being nice and swingy at the hip portion, where I need it the most.  I like this one so much that I decided to purchase the multi-colored yellow floral version to make up for the fact that the Selina dress didn't work at all for me in either size I tried (see the original review of it here at this BWRR). 

The shorts (see original post on them here), though, are the reason for the fallen ease score.  I am okay with *why* it fell since the shorts are now so big on me in the waist that it is somewhat laughable how close they came to falling off of me by the end of the day.  See even though they look fine in the original shots (the last three), you can see that I had to untuck the top in the first photo to cover up how loose they had become.  (The fabric is a loosely woven linen/rayon blend and while it is very nice to sew and feels pretty soft, it is very stretchy and very wrinkle-prone.)

Cool Factor: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) I think this is a solid effort.  Feels very vintage inspired, of course.  LOVE the buttons on the back, adds to the retro feel.

Anecdote from the Day:  Angus's friend loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse as much as Angus does so he was THRILLED to see all the Mickey/Minnie decorations at the party.  He was also one of the only boys and so he felt like he was the littlest king at the party.  Oh dear.

Day: Monday, May 26, 2014.

Where: Hanging out with friends and their kids.

Ease of Wear: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.) This pretty little skirt that I made last year (see here) will always be one of my favorites since it fits my shape so nicely, and is a mini without being too mini.  I realized after wearing it that I have nearly a yard of this gorgeous tana lawn left, and I can make a top from part of that (still plan on making some hair ties for some blog friends from the rest of that, cough cough, I know I am late).

The sandals are great and went well with the outfit, but do feel a bit tight upon first wearing them.  They do stretch out, though, so there's that.

Cool Factor: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) I have had this tee for a while, having bought it back in 2010.  I never thought of pairing it with something more "upscale," and have always worn it with shorts or pants, but after realizing the colors worked exactly right together, I knew I had to wear it with this skirt. 

Anecdote from the Day:  I spent half the night holding our friends' littlest boy, who fell asleep on my lap in a monkey position.  He's only seven months, so I was in heaven.  I love little tiny babies.  So cuddly and squeezable and huggable!

Day: Wednesday, May 28, 2014.

Where: Volunteering at the school, Winesday, and Rex's batting practice.

Ease of Wear: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.) I felt good, but bear in mind that it was stupid hot and humid yesterday, I had a migraine in the morning, and the only way we could get to Winesday this week was to drag all three kids with us.  Since bringing all three to the world's most uppity Whole Foods is insane, I decided to put Angus in my carrier on my back so I would at least have one kid away from all the goodies in the aisles.  Yeah, my poor top was a bit soaked after that.

Cool Factor: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) This top is made from a beautiful tana lawn from Liberty of London (see the original post on it here), so that ups the cool factor a bit.  The combo of the slim denim shorts and darling tied striped sandals with the top make it look very 50s/60s, so I would say I felt pretty cool, even if my poor tired soul was anything but...

Anecdote from the Day:  So even though I felt crazy for dragging the three kids to Winesday, it turned out that this week's theme was "for the kids."  Well, hot damn, I chose the right day to do the impossible.  The foods were all things kids love, and of course my three went crazy for the yumminess (food only, of course).  Their favorite was the tomato soup, which was pretty darn tasty.

Day: Thursday, May 29, 2014.

Where: Bowling, G Street Fabrics, Barnes & Noble, and School Pickup.

Ease of Wear: (4 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.) Yesterday was H-O-T, and today was cool and rainy.  Ugh.  I prefer hot to this, honestly.  I felt weird dragging out my boucle sweater (post on that one here) in late May, but the temp barely reached 65.  Sigh.  At least I had it all washed and ready to go.  And I am glad I had a cool-weather top to wear for part of my Made by Me outfits quest.

The shoes are too loose, should have bought the 40.  They work, but the toe area is very wide, and the 40 would have likely been more narrow there.

Cool Factor: (3.5 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) I don't know that I love the whole look together, but I am glad I wore the pieces together, and popped some crazy neon color in the sandals.  Otherwise my grey outfit would have blended into the cloudy background.

I really like how my makeup turned out, though.  Very simple, but I felt like it worked.  Now if only I could get my eyebrows freshened up, and a good ninety hour nap, I could take care of all of my cosmetic wants.

Anecdote from the Day:  I got a 139 in bowling.  Whoop!  Now why can't I get that score every time I bowl?

Day: Sunday, May 11, 2014.

Where: Mother's Day Mass, Zaytinya, and 9:30 Club to see Elbow.

Ease of Wear: (5 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.) This dress may be one of my favorites I have ever made for me (see more on that here).  I find getting shift dresses to properly work on my slimmer upper body and larger lower half very challenging, but hey, you make your own, you can make it fit you just right.  Aw, yeah.  Go comfort!

So you all know, I am not dumb, and did not wear those darling J. Crew strappy wedge sandals to watch Elbow in the concert.  I changed into a pair of black sparkly flip-flops for that.

Cool Factor: (4.5 of 5 stars--5 being the coolest--for both outfits.) I think it is pretty darn cool, and since neon tropical prints and shift dresses are "in" (see this Just Cavalli one), I would say yeah, I looked cool.  (And was still "modest" enough for mass.  So yay for that, too.)

Anecdote from the Day:  Zaytinya is great, and I love almost everything Jose Andres does, but I still prefer Oyamel, and its tasty fried grasshopper tacos.

At the Elbow concert, there were about ten percent of the crowd who must have only been at the concert to *go and do something, anything* that night, because they kept TALKING LOUDLY while the wonderful Guy Garvey of Elbow sang his sweet tunes all romantic like to us.  I kind of wished that Guy would have come down to them and gone, "whatcha you all doing?"  But he didn't.  Instead this kind of nerdy fifty-year old guy walked up to them and said "SHUT UP."  LOL.  Go, you!  I loved that!

Okay, that's all for now.  I hope everyone is ready for a nice weekend.  :-)

Monday, March 17, 2014

Ireland: The Photos.

Well it has been *almost a year* since we went to Ireland, and because *life* got in my way, I never actually got around to publishing either of my intended Ireland posts, "The Photos," and "The Outfits."  So today I will publish the (ridiculous number of) photos and tomorrow I will publish the outfits (far fewer photos).  What better day to make amends for not publishing photos from Ireland than St. Patty's Day?  ;-)

What a better way to start this Irish journey than with Rex and a leprechaun?

Angus crawled into this window seat in a pub in Dublin.  Mr. Dina insisted I grab a photo even though I was all, "agh, he's going to open that window and fall out!"  He was just a year old here, so my fears were probably unfounded.
Some street in Dublin!

When Target announced they would carry Boots products in their stores all those years ago, I rejoiced.  Then I saw what they actually were carrying and realized I would still need to travel to the UK/Ireland to get my Badedas/Nivea fix every few years.  I have no idea why CW is sticking out her tongue.

St. Stephen's Green

Pigeons freaking CW out in St. Stephen's Green.

Wolfe Tone Statue at Entrance to St. Stephen's Green

Family being all crazy...

Of course Dublin would have a showing of something Mr. Dina would just love while we're there.

Even better for him it was literally right next door to our hotel.  This "One Man Star Wars Trilogy" may have been his favorite part of the trip.  Not mine, though, 'cause I don't care about Star Wars.

This drink in Belfast was not my most favorite part of the trip, but it was very very close...

You all might recognize the lovely Avril (she of School Gate Style), and isn't it nice to see her all dressed up enjoying fish and chips?  I did enjoy the fish and chips, too, but I looked far less glamorous, sadly, so I refuse to put up those photos.  LOL.  You will see more of Avril tomorrow, but here is a sneak peek from her blog (she writes her posts in a far more timely manner).

Rex loves this photo!

Enjoying the hills of the Giant's Causeway.

CW always finds a reason to pose...

My best friend from high school, M., declared that we basically were the Royal Tenenbaums after seeing this photo on facebook.

The Giant's Causeway is so insanely beautiful...this was my most favorite part of the trip.

I told Mr. Dina he looked like he was leading the charge like in his other favorite movie series, The Lord of the Ring.  Is anyone surprised that he liked that reference?  I of course loved being compared to Angelica Huston in the Royal Tenenbaums, so I have to be understanding.  ;-)

Yes, it appears that my children enjoy recreating the Houses of the Holy album cover, just a bit too cold to go butt-naked, however.

We liked this photo so much that it became our Christmas Card this year.

So cute!

He was just learning to walk here...

Last one, I promise, from the Giant's Causeway.

Street art in Kilkenny, Ireland.

CW liked the kitty in the sign.  Dude in the back looks confused.

Outside Kilkenny Castle

Almost inside Kilkenny Castle

On the Kilkenny Castle grounds...

Also on the grounds of the castle was a very cool playground.  Why don't they have swings like this in the United States?

And...outside Kilkenny Castle...again.

Bunratty Castle for their nightly festivities...

I can, with 100% certainty, assure you that CW is looking at her dress and plotting ways to get *me* to make her one.

Another family photo, hey! (And what may be my first--of many--glasses of mead.)

I have a stupid amount of photos where this exact set of faces is occurring.

Rex enjoyed being "jailed" far more than he should have...

The Bunratty singers are insanely good at their job, and they helped get us our food, too.  And a staggering amount of mead, which I have to admit I *may* have drunk a bit too much of.  I do recommend it, so take a look here if you are interested in attending yourself.

Evidence that I drank far too much mead.  I barely even noticed these people were staring at the creek, cameras ready.  I figured they were all were out for a night's walk.  Nope...not so much.  Apparently some dolphins made their way into the stream and these people were hoping for a look-see at one of them.  The dolphins should not have been there, so it was a really big deal.

If you squint and look to the right you will see poor Mr. Dina all sick and exhausted.  The day after our stay in Bunratty, he got some sort of stomach flu (not food poisoning as we first thought) and basically slept the next twenty-four hours.  So he missed his last day in Dublin.  In the world of "God is kind," I didn't get the stomach bug until after we had landed home.  So I spent twenty-four hours asleep and miserable after landing.  Better than both of us being out of commission with three small children in a foreign country, I suppose.  :-P

Okay, that's all!  I am sure that was enough for you all, lol.  Have a wonderful St. Patty's Day!