Saturday, January 31, 2009

My Own Indiana Jones

My Mother in Law stayed with us this last week to help with the kids while I'm recovering. I'm very thankful for the help.
Being a Grandmother, she took every opportunity to spoil the children. The result was almost NO naps, eating out, and new stuff that they didn't really need. One of the things that Gran bought for Zander was some "Indiana Jones Shoes". Apparently, in order to dress up like Indiana Jones, he just HAS to have brown boots. His mother didn't think that they were necessary, but ask Gran, and you shall receive.
After she got them for him, I told him that he HAD to get some rest. He hadn't had a nap all week, and it was showing in his behavior. I told him that he didn't have to sleep, but he needed to spend an hour of "quiet time" in his room.
We went to check on him a while later, and this is what we saw

Friday, January 30, 2009


This is some of the best news I've heard in a LONG time! I guess I can continue to do business - at least for 1 more year!

CPSC Grants One Year Stay of Testing and Certification Requirements for Certain Products

Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission voted unanimously (2-0) to issue a one year stay of enforcement for certain testing and certification requirements for manufacturers and importers of regulated products, including products intended for children 12 years old and younger. These requirements are part of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), which added certification and testing requirements for all products subject to CPSC standards or bans.
Significant to makers of children’s products, the vote by the Commission provides limited relief from the testing and certification requirements which go into effect on February 10, 2009 for new total lead content limits (600 ppm), phthalates limits for certain products (1000 ppm), and mandatory toy standards, among other things. Manufacturers and importers – large and small – of children’s products will not need to test or certify to these new requirements, but will need to meet the lead and phthalates limits, mandatory toy standards and other requirements.
The decision by the Commission gives the staff more time to finalize four proposed rules which could relieve certain materials and products from lead testing and to issue more guidance on when testing is required and how it is to be conducted.
The stay will remain in effect until February 10, 2010, at which time a Commission vote will be taken to terminate the stay.

The stay of enforcement provides some temporary, limited relief to the crafters, children’s garment manufacturers and toy makers who had been subject to the testing and certification required under the CPSIA. These businesses will not need to issue certificates based on testing of their products until additional decisions are issued by the Commission. However, all businesses, including, but not limited to, handmade toy and apparel makers, crafters and home-based small businesses, must still be sure that their products conform to all safety standards and similar requirements, including the lead and phthalates provisions of the CPSIA.
Handmade garment makers are cautioned to know whether the zippers, buttons and other fasteners they are using contain lead. Likewise, handmade toy manufacturers need to know whether their products, if using plastic or soft flexible vinyl, contain phthalates.
The stay of enforcement on testing and certification does not address thrift and second hand stores and small retailers because they are not required to test and certify products under the CPSIA. The products they sell, including those in inventory on February 10, 2009, must not contain more than 600 ppm lead in any accessible part. The Commission is aware that it is difficult to know whether a product meets the lead standard without testing and has issued guidance for these companies that can be found on our Web site.
The Commission trusts that State Attorneys General will respect the Commission's judgment that it is necessary to stay certain testing and certification requirements and will focus their own enforcement efforts on other provisions of the law, e.g. the sale of recalled products.

Please visit the CPSC Web site at for more information on all of the efforts being made to successfully implement the CPSIA.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


I've written about this before - but it is worth repeating!
Save Handmade!
These words aren't mine, but they are so good, I didn't want to change them.

As parents and concerned citizens I’m sure most of us at one time or another have been confronted with the question of lead poisoning. But have you asked yourself what your government is doing to protect your children from lead contained in toys? The answer? They're banning toys, taking books from schools and libraries, hurting low income families, killing entrepreneurial spirit and risking putting the economy in an even greater depression than we've seen in decades. I'd like to introduce you to their solution: the CPSIA.

Do you know about the CPSIA? No? Then I ask you to take a few minutes to find out about it.

The CPSIA stands for Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, a new set of laws that will come into effect on 10 February, 2009 and will impact many, many people in a negative way. Make no mistake, this is very real. View it for yourself. If Forbes, the American Library Association and numerous other media are paying attention, perhaps you should too.

How will these new laws affect you? Well, here are a few examples:

To the Parents of Young Students:
Due to the new law, expect to see the cost of school supplies sky rocket. While those paper clips weren't originally intended for your student to use, they will need to be tested now that your 11-year-old needs them for his school project. This law applies to any and all school supplies (textbooks, pencils, crayons, paper, etc.) being used by children under 12.

To the Avid Reader:
Due to the new law, all children's books will be pulled from library and school shelves, as there is no exemption for them. That’s okay though, there's always television. Our children don’t need to learn the love of reading after all.
Article from the American Library Association

To the Lover of All Things Handmade:
Due to the new law, you will now be given a cotton ball and an instruction manual so you can make it yourself since that blanket you originally had your eye on for $50 will now cost you around $1,000 after it's passed testing. It won't even be the one-of-a-kind blanket you were hoping for. Items are destroyed in the testing process making one-of-a-kind items virtually impossible. So that gorgeous hand-knit hat you bought your child this past winter won’t be available next winter.

To the Environmentalist:
Due to the new law, all items in non-compliance will now be dumped into our already overflowing landfills. Imagine not just products from the small business owners, but the Big Box Stores as well. You can't sell it so you must toss it. Or be potentially sued for selling it. You can't even give them away. If you are caught, it is still a violation.

To the Second-Hand Shopper:
Due to the new law, you will now need to spend $20 for that brand new pair of jeans for your 2-year old, rather than shop at the Goodwill for second hand. Many resale shops are eliminating children's items all together to avoid future lawsuits.

To the Entrepreneur:
Due to this new law, you will be forced to adhere to strict testing of your unique products or discontinue to make and/or sell them. Small businesses will be likely to be unable to afford the cost of testing and be forced to close up shop. Due to the current economic state, you'll have to hope for the best when it comes to finding a new job in Corporate America.

To the Antique Toy Collector:
Due to the new law, you'd better start buying now because it's all going to private collection and will no longer be available to purchase. “Because the new rules apply retroactively, toys and clothes already on the shelf will have to be thrown out if they aren't certified as safe.”

To the American Economy:
Already struggling under an economy that hasn’t been this weak in decades, the American economy will be hit harder with the inevitable loss of jobs and revenues from suppliers, small businesses and consumers. The required testing is far too costly and restrictive for small businesses or individuals to undertake.

To the Worldwide Economy:
Due to this new law, many foreign manufacturers have already pulled out of the US market. You can imagine the impact of this on their businesses.

If you think this is exaggerating, here is a recent article from Forbes

And for those of you prepared to be stupefied and boggled, The New Law

Did you know? If this upsets or alarms you, please react.

More favorites - nursing help

Here's a couple more things that I got from Etsy that I'm very excited about.

First, I got this Nursing Cover-up from BoogabooBabies. This has been one of my favorite shops on Etsy for a long time. I've gotten a few other things from her as well, and have always been happy with them.
If cover-ups like this existed when I was nursing my first two babies, I didn't know about them. Instead, I would struggle with a blanket, trying to stay modest while nursing in public. And, when my babies were a little older, they'd always try to pull the blanket off, exposing mommy's bare chest to the world. But now, I've already used this cover-up a few times. It is so convenient - it folds up nicely and fits in the diaper bag! An adjustable strap goes around the neck to hold it on, and there is boning in the front so that I can see my baby, and she can see me, and I can stay covered. I love it!

Another nursing helper that I got is this Nursing Bra from Modest Milk. This is another awesome shop with all things nursing. When I purchased this bra, she asked for my measurements and made it specifically for me. It is super comfortable, and provides easy nursing access. I like it so much, I might have to get another one!

Be sure to visit both of these shops - they have great stuff!


I've posted before about this crazy, no good law. Tomorrow, bloggers are uniting to write about the dangers of CPSIA.

To learn more - go HERE.

Monday, January 26, 2009

A few of my favorite things...

I have gotten SO much baby stuff lately (mostly from Etsy) and I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorites.

Today, I'll post about a couple creams that really work wonders.

First - Tiny Tushie Ointment by The Bath Project.
This stuff came highly recommended by several other Etsy members. I actually got it several months ago when Ady was having terrible diaper rash. I tried all kinds of store brand creams, but nothing really seemed to work, and she usually cried when I put it on. So, I thought it wouldn't hurt to try this stuff. We tried it the first time, and put it on right before bedtime. By morning, the rash was almost gone. Now, she asks for "the green stuff" with almost every diaper change and says "it makes me feel better." (yes, she's STILL in diapers - but that's a different story) I wouldn't use anything else!

Second - Tough Titties Nipple Rub (for nursing mums) by Least Likely 2 Breed.
I found this so long ago, that I don't remember who recommended it. But, I've had it in my favorites for ages, waiting until I would need it. As a nursing mom, I'm very familiar with sore nipples. Especially the first few weeks after the baby is born (like NOW). I've used Lansinol Lanolin with my other babies, and it works okay. But I don't really like the texture of it and it's really sticky. So, I thought I'd try something new. This stuff is great! It has a great texture and it smells really good. And it WORKS! I've been putting it on after each feeding, and it's all but eliminated the sore nipple problem.

I highly recommend both of these products - and the wonderful sellers behind them!

I'll be posting more of my favorites soon!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

More about Ainzlee

I suppose I should give more details about how my little one came into the world. I guess that as far as the doctors are concerned, it was pretty mundane, but it's not something that I do every day.
Of my three c-sections, this one was by far the easiest. Probably because I knew what to expect, and while I knew it wouldn't be pleasant, I didn't have the unknown to be frightened of.
I think that one of the hardest parts of the whole ordeal is the waiting for it to start. The actual surgery was scheduled for 7:30am, but they asked us to arrive at 5:30. The first 20 minutes or so was spent verifying paperwork and literally signing my life away. Then, they put in an IV (very painfully I might add), and pretty much left us alone for about an hour and a half. That gave me plenty of time to TRY not to think about what was going to happen.
It was during this waiting period that I started to majorly freak out before Ady was born. I told myself that I was NOT going to do that this time. Thanks to an AWESOME Sunday School lesson the week before, I kept repeating in my mind "Faith before Fear". I knew that if I had faith, everything would be fine. So, I did my best to let faith replace the fear that I was feeling. For the most part it worked pretty well.
They took me back into the OR. They wouldn't let Brandon into the room until I had the spinal in and was all prepped. Thankfully, the surgical assistant was wonderful. He held my hand and told me to squeeze as hard as I needed to while the anesthesiologist put the spinal in. One of the worst parts of the whole process. Then they got everything else ready, and had Brandon come in. I think he was a little surprised that I was as calm as I was.
The actual surgery is surprisingly painless. That spinal does the trick, I guess. But it is pretty uncomfortable. They put up a big paper shield, so I can't actually see what they are doing. I'm sure that's a very good thing. I can feel pressure and feel things moving around, but that's about it. I also try very hard to forget that I am lying naked in a room full of people.
Then, they told me that it was time to push. (With a c-section, it's the doctors that actually push the baby out.) This part is VERY uncomfortable for me. First, I heard them say "look at that blond hair!". Then, "It's a girl!". And then, the most beautiful sound of all. Ainzlee's first cry! So sweet! I couldn't help but cry too!

At that point, Brandon left my side and went to where they were taking care of the baby. I couldn't see her at all from where I was. The doctors were still busy putting me back together. I started to shake uncontrollably. I'm sure that happened with the others. In fact, I know it did. But, for some reason, that's when the fear crept in. I was lying there, feeling completely alone (irrational, I know), and every part of me that wasn't numb from the spinal was shaking. Hard.
For a few brief moments the thought crossed my mind that I was dying. That I'd never actually see my baby. Crazy, I know. At last they finished sewing me up. They told me that the shaking was completely normal (although I didn't believe them at first) and took us to our room.
Finally, one of the nurses took pity on me and gave me something that stopped the shaking. What a relief! However, whatever that was, and a few other narcotics I was given (something about being 7 times stronger than morphine) made me a little incoherent. I know that we spent some time in a recovery room. I think I called my mother. But, I don't really remember much of it.
Then, we were taken to a room that would be our home for the next few days. I had told Brandon that I did NOT want him spending the night. I needed to be able to sleep, and experience has shown that it is impossible for me to sleep in a hospital with him snoring across the room. Besides, I knew that the nurses would be there and I would be taken care of.
For the most part, our stay was uneventful. The first night, I did have a nurse that I refer to as the Nazi nurse. She was very insistent about sticking to her schedule. Which was rather unfortunate. I called for help a couple times, and she didn't come because it wasn't my "scheduled time" yet. Thankfully, it wasn't anything really pressing that I needed her for. I just wanted help getting the baby out of her bed since I could barely sit up - she went back to sleep after only a few minutes of crying. *sigh*. Once I did get her, I decided it would be easier on everyone if she just stayed in bed with me.I think that with any hospital stay, you always end up with one of "those" types of nurses. All the others that I had were wonderful and very helpful.

My time at the hospital was "almost" like a little vacation. I got room service - they actually have wonderful food there. I didn't have to clean up after anyone, except for a few diapers. And I got to spend that special time getting to know my little princess.
Brandon did come and visit me during the day, of course. And his parents brought the kids to come and see me and their new baby sister. The room was not designed for that many people, and the kids got bored there very quickly. But, I was glad that they got that experience.

We now are all back at home, and trying to adjust to life with a new baby in the house. She is really doing well. She loves to be held, and we don't mind that one bit. (yet) Even nighttime isn't too rough. Last night, we went to bed after I fed her at about 11:30. She didn't wake up again until 3:30. She did stay awake for about an hour - but I got some online shopping done (heh heh heh). Then she slept until Zander woke us up at 7. I can live with that.
We are looking forward to watching her grow up!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Introducing: Ainzlee May

Our baby girl, Ainzlee May, was born Thursday, January 15th, at 7:58am. She weighed in at 6lbs, 11oz and is 19inches long.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

One Last Hurrah

Last night we had the opportunity to go to a Sun's game. We were given four tickets in the 11th row. Great seats. I wasn't sure if it was a such a good idea since it was only 36 hours from when I was having a baby. But, Brandon of course saw nothing wrong with it, and thought it would be a great time for all of us.
We went to dinner at a Mexican restaurant in the Arizona Center, and then walked to the arena. It was a little bit further than we thought, but it was okay, I guess.
This was the first time I've ever been to a professional basketball game. In fact, I don't think I'd been to a game at all since high school. It was really fun. We got to watch Shaq in action! And Steve Nash. And all the rest. Zander was pretty impressed for a while, and really liked the timeout entertainment - especially the gorillas.

Here's a few of the highlights:

And, since I'm having the baby TOMORROW - here's the LAST belly shot of this pregnancy. (And yes, I KNOW that I don't look like I'm big enough to have a baby. If I hear that one more time.........)

Monday, January 12, 2009

DONE - and almost done

Well, I guess it's time to give an update.
My big wholesale order is DONE - in fact, I just shipped it off! Yay me! I can finally take the next couple of days and RELAX!
Although, we did have a little bit of a scare yesterday. I woke up having contractions. They were pretty mild, and only maybe 10 minutes apart. I wasn't sure if it was anything to worry about or not. But, they started getting a little stronger later in the day, and seemed to be closer together. My wonderful, well-meaning husband, insisted that it was time to call the doctor. I don't think that he realizes that when he starts getting worked up, it just scares me all the more and makes things seem worse than they really are. Anyway, we got a hold of the on-call doctor, and she told me to head to the hospital right away.

I guess I should give a little background. Even though this is my third baby, I've never really had "real" labor. With my first, my water broke, but then... nothing. They induced me, and I had contractions, but they never got regular and I only dilated to a 2cm after 20 hours. So, I ended up having a c-section. With my second baby, she was a scheduled c-section, and I never had any kind of labor pains.
So, having contractions this time kind of worried me. Especially after hearing all the horror stories about what can happen if you have contractions after having c-sections. (doesn't sound like fun).

Anyway, when I got to the hospital, they sent me to triage and checked my cervix. No surprise, I wasn't at all dilated. They monitored the baby and the contractions for a while. They told me that yes, I was having contractions, but they weren't very regular (no surprise there either) and obviously weren't doing anything. (Other than causing me pain and discomfort). So, the on-call doctor called the room and talked to me (didn't even bother coming in) and told me that if I really was in pain, we could do the c-section, but otherwise, they'd give me something to stop the contractions and wait until Thursday as planned. Well, I really didn't like the idea of having someone I've never met preform major surgery on me, (and I thought she was a little rude too - but that's probably the pain and hormones talking). So, I opted to have them stop the contractions. They gave me a couple shots and sent me home.
The shots made me feel really shaky and weird, but they did the trick. I came home and went to bed. Today I'm feeling MUCH better. I think I can last a few more days.

In other news, as if we don't have enough going on, my kids have new pets.
Daddy had made a deal with each of them. Zander had to count to 100 on his own, Ady to 10, and Daddy would by them each a FISH. Well, on Friday, Ady counted to 10 out of the blue. More then once. So, Daddy took her to the pet store. But came home with one of these: (not my picture)

Does that look like a FISH to you?? Of course, when Zander saw Ady's hamster, he wanted one too. So he worked hard all day, and was able to count to 100 by dinner time. So, we went BACK to the pet store, and got ANOTHER hamster. Just what we need. They are pretty shy, and keep hidden most of the time, but I'll try to get a picture of them, sometime.
I've told Brandon that it is up to HIM to make sure they are taken care of. I hope the cat doesn't realize they are there....

Well, that's what's going on in our world today. My next post might have baby pictures! :)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Preschool, Update, and Other Stuff

I've finally got a second to blog. The last week or so has been CRAZY!

Zander started preschool on Monday. I knew that it would be a little rough. He hates change. But, I had no idea JUST how hard it would be.
Here he is on the first day, all ready to go:

We went a little early to meet the teacher and see the classroom and everything. He was pretty shy and first and didn't want to talk to her. But he like the toys and started playing with them. But, then it was time to go meet the other kids getting off the bus and we had to go with her. He didn't want to do that. And then, he had to go back to the classroom and sit on the carpet for circle time. He was NOT happy about that. He wanted to play with the toys, and DIDN'T like the teacher telling him that he couldn't. Plus, it was time for Mommy to leave. Oh what a fun fit he had. The teacher had to literally hold him down while I left. He was screaming and crying. I had to leave the room very quickly so that he didn't see me break down into tears. I sat in the parking lot and cried for several minutes.
Leaving him there was one of the hardest things I've had to do as a mother. But, when I went to pick him up a few hours later, he was smiling and happy. The teacher told me that he'd stopped crying not long after I left.
He still is having a little trouble with separation when I drop him off. But, it's getting better each day. He did tell me that he made a friend, so I'm hoping that will make everything better.

Now, for an update about my crazy order. I'm getting much closer to being done. In fact, my goal is to have it ready to ship on Monday. I've had some help (thanks so much West Family!) I *think* I can handle the rest on my own - with my wonderful husband's help of course.
At this point, I'm actually have everything done that I CAN do. I'm waiting on some supplies - fabric and bells - before I can finish the rest. They SHOULD arrive today. (I'll be very disappointed if they don't.)
So, here's all I have left to complete:
  • 13 Dogs - done, just waiting for bells. Need stuffed and finished.
  • 12 Octopus - waiting for fabric
  • 14 Pink and White ZadyMinis - waiting for fabric

Considering the fact that I've got close to 150 done, this should be no problem at all.

Last but not least - here's the latest belly update. I'm 38 weeks today. The baby is scheduled to be born ONE WEEK from today!!! And for the first time, I'm be happy to have her hang out in there until then. I don't want her to come early. Although, Zander was born at 38 weeks, so there's always that possibility.
Here's my belly today.