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Sweet Chariot

The Trek Trailer is her new favorite place to be.

She LOVES it (even though she isn’t really smiling in the picture)!  

Farmers’ Market

The new Main Street Farmers’ Market is now underway and each month brings more fruits, vegetables, handmade and homemade goods to Downtown Statesboro.  From freshly baked organic bread, fresh flowers and herbs, to beautiful, affordable homemade jewelry, you never know what awaits you downtown Statesboro every first and third Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. We are located in the parking lot of the Sea Island Bank on the corner of S. Main and E. Main. Support this new and growing farmers’ market and you will be amazed by the deliciously fresh produce of the local farmers.  More than just a destination for fresh food, it is an fun event for the whole family. 

So mark your calendars for the 1st and 3rd Saturday of every month so you can get the freshest local produce, support local farmers, and your planet. 

Know your neighbor, know your food!

 If you have questions, or are a farmer, artisan, or craftsmen who would like to participate, please call Main Street Statesboro at (912) 764-7227 email mainstreet@mainstreetstatesboroga.com.

 

 

 

I wish I had taken a picture everyday since she was born.  I could make a pretty pretty book like this one from Good Stock. I like the idea of a weekly picture, I can handle that. It is much less pressure than once a day. {I saw Good Stock on Black Eiffel, if you haven’t seen their gorgeous books you must go here!}


Southern Mamas poses the question: should kids under 2 watch television?  I, too, wonder about this.  Call me horrid, but I confess.  I try desperately to interest Busy-Body-Beatrice in television. She watches it less than an minute and then goes to other things. I would love to have an hour to myself while she learns the alphabet or sign language.  How about you?

Her Post: 

elmo.gifIt’s so tempting to plop a child down in front of Sesame Street while you scramble to get a few things done.But the American Academy of Pediatrics says children younger than 2 should watch no TV. Yet, many of us ignore such advice, do it anyway and, as a result, feel guilty every time we hear Elmo’s squeaky voice.

I write about the “TV or No TV?” struggle in my confessional, or rather, my column in Sunday’s Savannah Morning News Accent section: “Bad Mommy: My toddler watches the boob tube.” You can read the column by clicking here.

Feel free to let me know what you think of the “TV for toddlers” question and whether you think “edutainment” is really good for children younger than 2. Or if the term educational TV is just a euphemism to make us feel less guilty.

I subscribe to The Simple Dollar for facile ways to manage money.  They offer investment, thrift, frugality, financial management and wealth building suggestions.  The typical post is straightforward, a little abstract, number oriented, un-involved & non-personal. It’s expectantly practical while it is perfectly uncolored.

But, today’s newsletter is different. It’s more emotional than usual.  Surprisingly, it’s intimate and a little privy. 

I like it.  Per their post, I plan to live a rich life. I hope to live a rich life. And, I will start today. 

Here are the ten things they suggest (and  that I hope that) I to do today:

10 Things To Do Today


1. Play with a child. There are only 6,574 days between a child’s birth and their eighteenth birthday. Don’t waste a single one.

 

2. Keep that wallet in your pocket. Time is money and money is time – don’t spend either without a good reason.

 

3. Stop and smell the roses. You’re never too busy to enjoy the simple pleasures that life affords you.

 

4. Tell someone that they’re doing good work and that you appreciate it. Then tell their boss about it.

 

5. Do something you’ve never done before. You might have a hidden talent you’ve never known about.

 

6. Take a step towards one of your goals. You have goals, right? If you don’t know what the next step is, figure it out – that in itself is a big step.

 

7. Laugh out loud, and make someone else do the same.

 

8. Put some money away for the future. Anything at all, even if it’s just a dollar. One dollar a day starting at birth in a 4% savings account adds up to $120,000 at age 65. If you put away a bit more than that and just leit it be, you won’t have a thing to worry about when you’re old, just chasing a grandchild across the yard.

 

9. Tell someone you love them. Your mother, your wife, your child, a person who influenced your life a ton – whoever you love.

 

10. Do something unexpectedly kind for someone else, just to help them out. If they ask you if you want repaid, tell them to just do a favor for someone else.

If I can do all of these things today, and tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that – then I’m in the process of living a truly rich life.  

Let’s get rich ya’ll!

*Photo by *Proserpine*on flickr

  Lilly came to visit last week while Amanda and Jon went to D.C. for the weekend. Actually, they went toJon’s sister Jessica’s wedding.  Four WHOLE days away from home. Lucky sister, right? 

Mom and I took the girls to Free Spirit Pottery one afternoon.  If you are looking for something fun and free to do in the ‘boro with small children Free Spirit  is a great idea. They give babies a complimentary plaque.  It is totally 100% free.  You can opt for a hand print or a foot print.  We were hoping for a hand print; however the girls had something else in mind.  After trying the hands a few times we finally surrendered.  We used their feet.  Apparently, after a certain age babies like to curl their fingers. 

You may think this would be a short trip.  Rather, it took us between 1 -2 hours to pick out the paint colors, try the hands SEVERAL times, get the girls painted and then washed, etc.  It was a fun afternoon!

Would You Like Some Paint on Your Face?

Lilly Gets Her Hand Painted.  Take 1.

 

Pressing Lilly’s Finger on the Plaque.  Take 2.

 

Okay. Okay, We Will Use The Foot.

Before I had kids, I never thought I would breastfeed. Now that I recollect, I never really considered what I would do when it came to feeding my child until I was about 9 months pregnant, heading down the home-stretch.

Like it so often happens in life, I found myself pregnant at the same time as my sister and my friend Chrissy. For each of us, it was our first. Naturally, since we were all professionals who were all due around the same time, we kept each other abreast of all of our lastest findings: the safest car seats, the best rated cribs, the “must-read” pregnancy books, clothes sales, parenting tips, etc. And in our search for “the best” we all were in agreement that the best nourishment for our new bundles of joy would be breastmilk. And so each of us was committed to giving it a shot.

And so what seemed like such a simple decision, took us all by surprise when we found out that is a most complicated undertaking. We all hear how it is “the most natural thing” and how “our bodies are made for it”, but there’s no way to truly know what it’s like until you’re “knee-deep” and swimming right in it.

As with many of you reading this post, I can just hear your stories; both good and bad. Probably like many of you, I just thought: “Okay, so you take the baby, hold it to your chest, and viola, the feeding begins!” It’s easy and it’s natural, instictive. Yeah, right! Then I find out there is a whole new vocabulary like “latching on” and “colostrum.” All of a sudden, I wondered why I didn’t do more homework and really research this topic during my pregnancy – but no matter, I’m from the old school. Once I decide to do a job, I do it!

After breastfeeding my daughter, I’ve learned these basic truths:

-No matter how determined you are, it takes two to tango: Your little one has to be ready, willing, and ABLE (yes in caps) to breastfeed, no matter how much you want it to happen.

-The sooner you start pumping the better. Ask the hospital for a pump and get on schedule: This really helps get your production on track. I rented a hospital grade pump from a home-health store. I was producing milk like a machine!

-There’s no substitute for experience: Talk to other breastfeeding moms if this is your first time trying it. You’ll be suprised at how much you learn from a group of women who really love to talk.

-Don’t give up! If this is what you want for your little one, it IS possible even with a preemie and mulitiples. You can do it.

-Make goals that are attainable: my initial goal was 1 month. After I celebrated making it that far, I tried to reach the 3 month mark. Once I made it to that goal, I was in a groove so I decided to push for another 3 months. Now, we are almost 11 months and going strong. I would have never dreamed!

-Convenience, convenience, convenience: This one is self explanatory.

-Don’t forget to buy some lanolin cream: Hospitals usually provide this as a parting gift too, thank goodness!

-Invest in a comfortable robe or pajamas since this will most likely be your dress of choice for the first 4-6 weeks. This is one of the only things I bought for myself. Some cute polka-dot jamies from Josphines that buttoned up the front. They were cute and comfortable. I didn’t mind answering the door (to my friends, of course) in them.

As for weaning your baby, that is where I’M asking for advice. I never thought I would make it to 11 months with my Sweet Pea (or Bea, rather) but here we are: she still likes to nurse before naptime when we are at home, right before bed, and at a very early 3:30am every morning. Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact that we still have this time together and I know this is great for her development. But sleeping in until 6am when Poppy wakes up is rather tempting…did I say VERY tempting.

So if you decide to try breastfeeding, whether you do it for 2 days, 2 months, or 2 years, just remember that you are blessed for the time you had together. Good luck!

More reading: 
  • Comparison of Human Milk and Formula
  • How to pump and store breast milk
  • La Leche League Human Milk Storage Information
  • Children’s Health Topics: Breastfeeding
  • Infant nutrition information from Seattle’s Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center
  • Megan at A Look Into My World has recently included new links to non-traditional childbirth information on her blog.  I think she is exploring her options. She is a smart girl!  When I stumbled upon this post from Aimee at Living, Learning, and Loving Simply I thought of her so I decided to repost it here.  This is a nice post Aimee! 

    This is Beatrice at the Hospital. The person taking her vitals was our midwife. The wonderful thing about a midwife is they do all of the “doctoring” and all of the “nursing.” It is incredibly personal. It’s not for everybody, but it was definitely the right decision for Brian, Beatrice and I. If you have any questions about the experience I am happy to answer. It was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. Even though I do not feel I was the best patient. If we have another child I promise to follow my heart and not my family on the phone.

     

    Think for Yourself

    Note: this is Aimee’s article – See above - I have lived most of my life doing what others tell me to do. Whoever seems trustworthy, spiritual, intelligent or socially mature is who I will listen to and make decisions based on what they say without much thought of my own. It took listening to the wrong people and making wrong life decisions with painful consequences to wake me up to my irresponsibility of not thinking for myself.As I was planning a home birth with my fourth child, I had a wonderful midwife who taught me to make informed decisions. I just wanted her to tell me what to do in my pregnancy (just like I did with the doctors in my other pregnancies) without my taking responsibility in understanding my body, nutritional health, testing, herbs, circumcision, vaccinations, etc. She would give me lots of information from lots of different sources that would give me both sides of an issue. Then she would ask me, “What is your decision?”At first this made me really uncomfortable. I was used to entrusting myself into the hands of others without thought and realized how often I just want someone to tell me what to do. I don’t want to take the time to really understand the issues and also to have to take the responsibility for the consequences! If we just listen to others’ opinions and things go wrong, we can just blame them. Being an informed decision-maker means I must take time, learn to think, learn to discern, pray, and make a decision based on all the facts along with the Lord’s leading. It causes me to become more intuitive and to ultimately entrust myself to the Lord.Having the home birth changed my life because it truly empowered me. The process showed me that I had been a blind follower throughout my life (mostly out of sheer fear) and that having a home birth was something I decided to do without the influence of anyone else in my life. And I did it! And I became responsible for my body and my daily living in a whole new way.

    Being an empowered thinker transformed every area of my life after that home birth. I simply cannot get enough of the library or the internet for research. I feel free for the first time in my life to question everything in my faith, my values, my habits, my eating choices, my finances, my relation to creation, my homeschooling, my parenting, my home, my community, my church, my hobbies, and on and on. I read a wide variety of authors and viewpoints on every topic that sparks interest in me. I examine, talk with Mike, pray, compare ideas with the truth of the Bible, realize that there is sooooo much I just don’t know in life, and then jump into learning even more! My brain has come alive! My faith has deepened and been encouraged, enriched, and expanded…God is bigger than I ever imagined and more wonderful than I ever dreamed. Many of my lifestyle choices are changing and evolving as I seek to find a simple and more natural way of living in every single area of my life. I want to live life well and with authenticity.

    Why do you do what you do? Are you just going with the cultural flow? Or with the culture of your faith? Or with your family or friends? Are you afraid to question life? To take full responsibility for your choices?

    Be empowered to walk your own walk in dependence on the Lord. Read both sides of every issue and know all your options in the daily choices you make. Talk to or read many different people in areas that interest or concern you. Live deliberately, responsibly, humbly and with mindful intention. Listen to the gentle promptings of the Holy Spirit. Trust Him and your gut.

    Enjoy the expanding journey!

      Beatrice isn’t really into technology these days. But, she will definitely be more tech-y than her mother. 

    While checking up on April at My Beautiful Chaos, I stumbled upon this video which was
    created to inspire teachers to use technology in engaging ways – for children’s sake.  By embracing technology teachers can develop higher level thinking skills the video persuades. And, equally important, it serves to motivate district level leaders to provide teachers with the tools and training to incorporate technology into their curriculum.

    It is amazing to in-vision how tech-savvy our children will be. In fact, it is incomprehensible-ly, fantastically, exceptionally astonishing. I hope that Brian and I despite our ignorance and old-fogey-ness will embolden and enkindle Beatrice’s techie knowledge. Understandably, we won’t be able to keep up. Yet, I hope we stimulate and spark her interest rather than extinguish it.

    Great video. And, great post April!

    *Video From bjnesbitt on youtube

    Hi you guys. I am sorry I have been a slacker blogger. It seems I am bubbling with lots to share but have very little time to designate to the computer.  I forgot, yes I am a terrible mother, I forgot my camera over the break.  Yep. You’ve got it. That means I don’t have any pictures from Christmas.  I was pretty sneaky as I coerced family members into using their cameras and sending the photos. However, I have not received any holiday photography…yet.  Keep your fingers crossed. 

    Now, to the event of the day.  Beatrice received a training potty for Christmas. Lucky her, right?  Actually, I am happy about it. It is cute with a little “flusher” that includes sound effects.  After making the flushing sound it says, “good girl” strangely in Aunt Kathy’s voice.  Could Aunt Kathy be one of Santa’s Elves? hmm…

    Anyway, while unpacking I decided after deliberation to remove it from the box and sit it in the bathroom corner.  At least the proximity to the Adult Toilet would perhaps foster association, right? 

    You are not going to believe this but: Beatrice TT’ed init once today (to my shock).  She later TT’ed on the floor next to it. And, she went #2 in her diaper while sitting on top of the trainer toilet. 

    Isn’t this weird?  Do you think she is trying to tell me that she would like to start potty training?  Is 9 months too early?  How does she know what to do in there? 

    I have been researching it on the Internet (& called my Mom, my Sister, and my Grandmother) this afternoon. 

    Early infant potty training seems like a lot of work. Is it worth it?  Have you tried it? Should I be using cloth diapers?

    HELP!  I am a first time Mom. I have no experience in this area. I do not want to start too early, nor be psycho.  Yet, if she is interested, I would like to introduce the concept.  Isn’t this supposed to be hard?  I need your advice.

    *photo by bombhead

    I have several relatives that are on the cusp of giving birth.  I mean, literally days of their due dates. Kelly. Ut-um, Stephanie.  Yew-hew, laaaadies.  And, Lea, Lauren, Avery, and April, you may want to read-on, too.  I found this fun information at www.southernmamas.com .  I can not help but think of you all. 

    Needless to say, this article is being reposted here.  P.S. I have eaten at Toucan’s about three times. It’s scrump-dilly-icous.  If you need a date, I am happy to go with you. And, I will even drive you down River Street afterward! 

    Here you go girls: 

    Wanna give birth before Christmas?

    December 19th, 2007

    toucansign.jpgOr maybe you’re hoping yours will be a New Year’s Baby?Here’s an unofficial labor-inducing Savannah secret: a beloved local restaurant serves a special entree that’s rumored to induce labor. That’s right. The Thai shrimp(or chicken)and eggplant at The Toucan Cafe, a SouthernMamas favorite, is the special to order before going in for the pitocin.In the 13 years the restaurant’s been open, several customers have said they went into the labor the day after eating the meal, says owner Steve Magulias. The magic meal isn’t on the regular lunch or dinner menu, so just call in advance to order it before coming into the restaurant @ 531 Stephenson Ave. on Savannah’s southside. 912.352.2233

    Of course, if the magic Toucan meal doesn’t do the job, we’ve been told taking a ride on the cobblestones on River Street works pretty well, too.

    Got any other tips for expectant moms who are tired of being pregnant and want the baby to come now? Please share.

    5 Big Ways to Help Kids Love Books 

    I love to plunder around the Wondertime Magazine website.  They  have fun stuff for infants and children and creative parenting techniques for real families.   Today, I found this article that you may enjoy. I will repost it here and also give a link so that you can read it “on site” if you please. 

    Do you have any fun and creative ways to introduce books and foster book-love?

    5 Big Ways to Help Kids Love Books By Amy Maclin

    Getting kids jazzed about reading can be out there — inviting them to suck on lemons and draw pictures of vacuum cleaners — or as simple as anticipated trips to the library.

    Mary Brigid Barrett, children’s author and illustrator, teacher, and founder of the National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance, shares her favorite ways to cultivate bookworms.

    1. Make it an experience for all the senses.
    “It’s wonderful to have a book come alive in a sensory way. I love to read Robert McCloskey’s book Lentil to preschoolers, and I always pass out lemon slices first. The story is about a boy in a small town in Ohio who saves the day with his harmonica. There’s a part where the town’s band is all set to play in a celebration — until they see the villain, Old Sneep, sucking on a lemon, and they all pucker up and can’t play their instruments. At that point I tell the kids, ‘Suck on the lemon!’ They get a huge kick out of it.”

    2. Engage in a spirited debate.
    “You want kids to start thinking critically, because that’s what education is all about, and it’s never too early. Take the story of the itsy bitsy spider: When I ask a group of 4-year-olds who the hero of that story is, they’ll always chime right in with ‘The spider!’ And then you follow that with: ‘The spider has a problem. What’s the problem?’ For a 6-year-old you can even introduce the word conflict into the conversation. Ask them, ‘What would happen if there weren’t any rain, and the spider could climb right out of the drain?’ Well, it would be really boring if there was no problem to solve. Protagonist, conflict, resolution — there you have all the elements of literature! Very little is beyond kids if you can relate it to their experience level.

    Now the first three or four times, a book should be read for pure enjoyment, of course. But when the kids ask for the same books again and again — and you’re getting bored out of your mind — these kinds of conversations can keep things lively for you, too.”

    3. Write a book of your own.
    “For a child who’s just starting to read, get a spiral notebook or sketch book with blank pages and make his own personalized word book. You can start with the family: Have photographs of Dad and Mom, or even ask an older sibling to draw them. Print the letters, big and bold. Have a picture of their grandfather that says not only “grandfather” but “Poppo.”

    Then you can expand it from there with whatever interests your child. If you have a kid who’s a fire-truck maniac, fill it with pictures from the fire station. I know one family whose young son was absolutely obsessed with vacuum cleaners — upon meeting you, he’ll ask whether you have an upright or a canister!

    This is also a terrific introduction to writing, and when your kids get older it can lead them into crafting their own stories.”

    4. Find out what else the library offers.
    “Libraries can have so much that parents might not know about — DVDs, audio books, even games and puzzles that can be checked out. Some have preschool PJ nights. Many have museum passes, which are usually for one or two adults and at least two children.

    The library is a great resource for parents, too: Two books I love are Jim Trelease’s Read-Aloud Handbook, which recommends great books broken down into age ranges, and Anita Silvey’s 100 Best Books for Children, which not only describes the books but gives great anecdotes about their creators. For instance, she tells how Robert McCloskey — who wrote not only Lentil but Make Way for Ducklings, of course — actually had a group of ducklings that he brought into his apartment, where he put them into the bathtub and drew them. That’s a great story for kids.”

    5. Get everybody involved.
    “A lot of parents feel guilty because the standard advice is to read to your child for at least 15 minutes a day, and if you have three kids it’s not always practical to have three individual reading sessions for three different levels. But there are things that are appropriate for kids at a wide range of ages.

    For instance, you might think a 6-year-old won’t be interested in a board book. But she may feel a sense of ownership about it and want to engage a younger sibling by helping her ‘read aloud,’ even if she’s just reciting the story from memory.

    “Beverly Cleary’s Beezus and Ramona series and Russell Hoban’s Frances the Badger books would be very appropriate for kids 3 to 6. I read Charlotte’s Web to my three kids when they were 8, 6, and 3. The day after we finished it, Patrick, the baby, said, ‘That was so great. Can we read another novel?’ When in doubt, always go for the ‘reach’ book.

    “Also, be patient with the ones who just have high energy levels. One of mine would sit for hours and listen to books, one was a little whirling dervish, and the third was somewhere in the middle. Just say, ‘I’m going to read aloud,’and then keep going. Even the dervish is going to absorb something. And take heart — the heroes of children’s books usually tend to be little dervishes themselves. Try to think of a children’s-book character who’s perfectly complacent and obedient. I dare you!”

    *For more ways to encourage reading, check out the National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance’s Parent & Guardian Handbook

    *Read the article, here.

    Too cool for school – B gives a High Five!  

      The baby sign “thing” is going really well.  Admittedly, I abandoned the idea after several months of signing with no response from Beatrice.  Out of the blue, she can sign “more and dog.”  And, she can give us high fives, which Dad thinks is especially cool!      Signing is so much fun!

    So – a big think you to Caroline, Melanie, and Lea for encouraging me to check out the Baby Signs Program!

    Click here for the Baby Signs Complete Starter kit, here.

      I love to flip the dog bowls over and grab the kitchen towels. Oh, what fun!

    Remember what I told you about the dog bowls and the kitchen towels?

    Toxic baby formula?

    canned-formula.jpg  The Environmental Working Group,an advocacy and research organization, says in a new report that liquid formula from the nation’s top baby formula makers is sold in cans lined with bisphenol-A.  BPA is a hormone-mimicking chemical that has been found to cause hyperactivity, sexual development abnormalities and pediatric brain cancer in laboratory animals. This gives good reason to avoid liquid infant formula packaged in cans.  Perhaps, it is a better option to use powdered formula, liquid formula not in cans, or breastfeed exclusively.

    According to media reports, formula makers acknowledge the presence of BPA, but say it is not harmful. The Food and Drug Administration agrees.  Hmm…I don’t think it is something I would like to risk.  This is definitely a subject that deserves greater research. 

    Concerns were raised earlier this year about BPA in plastic, shatterproof baby bottles and sippy cups. For suggestions on safer bottles and cups, click here.

    *For more information visit:  www.southernmamas.com

    The aroma of fresh baked bread fills the kitchen.  An opened jar of pimientos colorfully decorates the counter while diced black olives are stacked nearby.  “Hey babe, what are you cooking?” my husband questions as he enters my lair.  “Oh, nothing,” I answered.  “Nothing,” he questions. “It sure looks good,” he smiles while rubbing his belly. “If you insist on knowing, I am making snakes,” I surrender my secret.  “Yikes!” he exclaimed. 

    Realizing it rings creepy, yes I am making snakes, snakes for B’s Halloween Party.  Tomorrow, tomorrow.  Tomorrow is B’s  very first Halloween Party!   Admittedly she has shown little enthusiasm for the affair. But, I am bubbling with excitement.  After hours of shopping and deliberating over her costume I finally selected a Tom Arma bunny.   I love it!   Usually, I am attracted to homemade costumes.  This one is so cute, however.  I couldn’t resist the image of B dressed up in this number.  She looks like a plush bunny rabbit.  It makes you want to squeeze her, hug her, and whisk her off to bed!  I assume this will be one of the only years that I have total control over her selection.  Mama can choose what Mama wants to choose.  So, I better enjoy it to the fullest.  I am!

    Equally as excited with the costume as with the party, I have been looking forward to making my first goodies for her.  It makes me feel like a “real mother.”  The only requirement of the party is that you bring a healthy snack.  Being a Mother is so much fun!  Just call me Christy Cleaver.  My mind has been whirling all week.  What in the world can I make for Halloween that is healthy and fun?  I finally decided that I would make snakes out of bread stick dough, snap on two eyes out of sliced black olives, and stitch in a pimiento tongue.  Ssssss.

    Until tomorrow I sign this post,

    B’s Mamasssssssss

    Obento! 

    Cat obento

    Obento!  I know, it sounds like a party, fiesta, all night long.  Go Lionel Richie, go.  Maybe I am just getting carried away.  It does, kind of, sound like that instrument they play at the symphony.  Deep. Loud.  You know, the Obento.  No, no that is not it. Anyway, Obento is a super cool craft of Japanese mothers.  They spend hours making creative lunchs for their children each week.  The creations are Obento.  Obento can be animals, cartoon characters, toys, well, Obento can be anything that will make the food appealing to choosy children.  The teachers judge each of the boxes every day according to rules of the craft such as it must be hand made, tantalizing and appealing to kids.  Wow. I am so impressed with Japenese mothers.  This Southern mama can not imagine finding an extra hour a day to create, implement and execute creative lunch box strategies to swindle my child to eat her veggies.

    Look out B, here come your brocolli!

    Soccer obento