Monday, February 23, 2009

Oh, the garage...

Work has steadied for now and I want to start some projects at home. In order to execute on some of my ideas I need to get the house organized. I need to purge, to organize, to shred, to donate and to take to the dump/recycling center.

I started with the garage, the place where all things go to be forgotten. It was 9:00 pm on a Friday night; I had reached my limit and started cleaning. It’s a 2-car garage and we couldn’t walk from the front to the back. I didn’t like opening the garage door that faces the street because it was embarrassing. Over the course of the next couple weeks and after four trips to Goodwill, one trip to the dump (another planned soon) and many hours organizing all the bins of stuff, it’s now in pretty good shape. It’s still a work in progress but we can almost park a car in it, a Smart Car.

I’ve also cleaned out Abby’s closet, the guest room closet, my closet, the finished building in our back yard and my car. Next on the list are the hall closets, finishing with the garage, and starting on the kitchen. I need to have a sense of order before I can embark on a new streak of creativity. I really should have taken before and after pictures.

So far, I have learned more than how to optimize space in a small house, I have learned that I don’t need to keep everything I have ever purchased or been given. I have learned that while being wife, mom, dog owner, friend and employee that I can no longer tackle projects in one day. I have learned that I have to be patient, I have to be okay with work in progress and I have to be persistent (it’s so easy to start a project and not finish it). I have learned that this is not failure, it’s not laziness, it’s reality.

Now for the elephant in the room. It will be interesting to see what happens with the classic 1966 MGB that has been sitting idle in the garage for 5 years. It either needs to be made fully usable (engine finished, painting done, windshield and top installed, bumpers put on, etc) or find a new home. I just looked online and found what it could like if it gets finished. Don’t tell my husband, but I think I want to keep it now…

Friday, February 20, 2009

'Ni Ni '

Just a quick post for today... Yesterday, Abby's nap wasn't a long as normal because a noise woke her up.

After I got home from work, we went on your daily walk with Murphy. When we got home and I was taking her out of the jogging stroller, she looked up at me and quietly said 'ni ni' (aka: night night). She asked to go to bed. I was so proud of her for recognizing she was tired and that she wanted to go to bed, it was her choice.

The many times we didn't stay out late with family and friends, the many times we stayed home on the weekends to make sure she got her sleep have paid off. She's on a pretty stable schedule and we try very hard not to deviate from it. Some people understand, other's don't, but I feel because of the sleep she gets she's a very happy, energetic toddler and when she gets sick, it passes quickly.

Our sleep book of choice is Dr. Weissbluth's "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child".

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

BPA Free and Beyond

When Abby was about 6 months old, we started hearing about BPA and it's potential dangers. I thought the media and parents were overacting, but began to wonder if BPA was actually harmful. I spent an entire weekend doing research and decided that for our family we were going to be BPA free. This meant the 15+ bottles we had were to be thrown away/recycled and we had to purchase new ones. We were using Dr. Brown's and they had to come out with their non-glass BPA free bottles (and when they did come out they were hard to find). We bought a few glass Dr. Brown's to use in the interim. We threw away (or recycled where possible) sippy cups, plastic food containers, baby serving bowls, spoons and everything else we could find that contained BPA. This BPA cleanup prompted me to start looking at household cleaners, shampoos, cosmetics, laundry detergents and anything else that I could do to rid our house of possible dangers. Some people think I've gone overboard, but whatever I can do to keep our little one safe and healthy, I will do.

When our house is clean, it no longer 'smells' clean as fragrance in products can be potentially harmful and most of our cleaning supplies are now fragrance free.

Some of my favorite BPA free baby product brands and more people/environmentally friendly cleaning products include the following (not all products made by a certain manufacturer are BPA free, do your own research to confirm):
Gerber (dishes, sippy cups, utensils)
Sassy (teething toys, bath toys, utensils)
Seventh Generation (cleaning products, diapers and baby wipes)
Method (dishwashing liquid - go naked)
Avalon Organics Baby (shampoo and body wash)
Boon (suction bowls, utensils)
Earth's Best (food and diapers)

Next up on our list to purge is PVC (found in some vinyl products).

This was almost our Christmas card picture

I was moving our pictures from our old home computer (256 MB RAM) to our new one which operates a lightening speed in comparison when I came across this... This would have been our Christmas card picture if it wasn't for the snotty nose, the bruise on her cheek and the shiner on her left eye (click on the picture to see it larger and to also see all the little details I speak of).

I love this picture in a way I think only a mother can.