Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Six months

baby six month old photo shoot

green amp cloth diaper

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

How to take a blogging break from Code Name: Mama

blogging in my slippers

I'm happy to host a guest post of helpful tips on taking a vacation from blogging but keeping your blog going over at

Dionna of Code Name: Mama wrote this post for me during my blogging babymoon, and now she's taking her own!

New babies, vacations, outside obligations, blogging burn-out. All bloggers need a break sometimes — it can even be healthy to plan a regular break into your annual blogging schedule. If you're worried about losing readers and subscribers during your absence, here are some tips that might help ease your mind.

Read more »

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday Surf: I'm thankful

Welcome to the Sunday Surf! Here are some of the best links I've read this past week.

I had a very gratitude-filled Thanksgiving, celebrated with family and new friends and delicious food made by other people. But the best part is, I can now start listening to Christmas music without feeling sheepish! Happy first Sunday of Advent, if you celebrate that sort of thing. I love something cozy to enjoy as the days grow ever darker.

On to the link roundup, which I did mostly all today:

Get your gratitude on
Let's Take the Metro's Gratitude Challenge was an uplifting success. Check out the linked-up posts and enjoy the thankfulness!

1. Melissa @ Just Another Day  9. Christine @ African Babies Don't Cry  17. Kelly @ Becoming Crunchy  
2. Jennifer @ True Confressions of a Real Mommy  10. Lauren @ Hobo Mama  18. Laura  
3. Carrie @ LoveNotesMama  11. Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama  19. Terri @ Child of the Nature Isle  
4. Rachael @ The Variegated Life  12. Zoie at TouchstoneZ  20. Cassie  
5. christy @ Adventures in Mommyhood  13. Amy @ Anktangle  21. Dionna @ Code Name: Mama  
6. CatholicMommy @ Working to be Worthy  14. Fine and Fair  22. Little Hearts/Gentle Parenting Resources  
7. Amy @ Peace 4 Parents  15. Melissa @ Vibrant Wanderings  23. Kate Wicker  
8. Momma Jorje  16. Mandy @ Living Peacefully with Children  

shark button Gratitude Challenge button for Let's Take the Metro
Button v. button

National Novel Progress Month

Three days left! We can do it! How's your progress?

NaNoProgMo: National Novel Progress Month

Remember, Teresa from Mom Grooves is offering each of our fabulous NaNoProgMo participants a gift — truly! So if you're following along or want to join, just email her your address and she'll mail you a little writerly pick-me-up. More details at: How's your "prog"?

You can also see how my progress is going here: Halfway or two-thirds? Find out what I've learned about writing, balance, and fear. Since I wrote that, I've finished my novel to the point that I'm having Sam take another look at it. Whenever he gets around to it. Hint, hint, ahem. In the meanwhile, I'm working on the NPN Cloth Diapering book! Also a fun job.

We have a linky, button and a progress meter available, so join us! Yes, still. We can always keep going next month, too, right?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Gratitude challenge

Amanda of Let's Take the Metro had a great idea for Thanksgiving: The Gratitude Challenge. We're all listing 100 things we're grateful for. Here are mine. What surprised me was how easy this list was to write, and how many more items I could add.
  1. Sam: Partner, love, friend.
  2. Mikko: More delightful every day.
  3. Alrik: Our family is even better with you here. And you are so dang cute.
  4. A nice camera, fixed
  5. A few caterpillars who are still alive One lone caterpillar surviving our butterfly raising. Still cute. Sorry, other ones. Late fall is crap for hollyhocks.
  6. Computer games to goof off with
  7. Time to work on my novel: NaNoProgMo for the win.
  8. Writing friends to work alongside toward our common goals
  9. A husband whose work schedule lets me write
  10. A husband who shares child raising and housekeeping (such as it is)
  11. A husband who cooks
  12. $15 for all our boys' Christmas presents at Goodwill Outlet
  13. A renewal of frugality despite the reasons for it
  14. Baby mullets
  15. Baby fauxhawks
  16. Site redesign, finally
  17. When the baby naps
  18. When I nap
  19. Hulu. So many free shows, so much time to waste.
  20. Crunching leaves: I love you, fall.
  21. Drifting leaves: Seriously, you're my bestie, fall.
  22. Seeing my breath: Winter is moving in.
  23. Handmade mei tais: Everyone loves mine, which is so happy making. Too bad I don't sell them.
  24. Rifftrax
  25. Tortilla chips
  26. Squishy baby thighs: Oh!
  27. Listening to a four-year-old: It never fails to be amusing, and often enlightening.
  28. Minky and flannel blankets: So cozy.
  29. The internet: How did I exist before you?
  30. GPS navigation: How did I drive before you? Oh, that's right, I got lost all the time.
  31. Pooting a baby neck
  32. The resulting belly laughs that only a baby can offer
  33. Guest posts: So much wisdom, shared with me.
  34. Crepes: What Sam is making for Thanksgiving. What a rebel.
  35. Rocking out to the iPod, even though Mikko makes us listen to the same song over and over.
  36. Mount Rainier: I love catching a glimpse.
  37. Taut baby skin: Those cheeks!
  38. Preschooler sharing everything with me because he wants to, including a Tootsie Roll that he divides into three parts, then asks for half the bite in my mouth
  39. Cozy flannel sheets: Best part of being cold is how good they feel.
  40. Shark jokes
  41. Dominating the high score board against my husband and preschool son: Take that.
  42. Clearing off the table to have a family meal
  43. Starting solids, and the hilarious faces Alrik makes at tasting something other than nummies
  44. Rain on skylights
  45. Feeding seagulls: Four-year-olds find their eagerness exhilarating rather than obnoxious.
  46. Brothers in matching clothes: I never tire of this. I'm so glad neither have my boys at this point.
  47. The library
  48. Currywurst in Seattle
  49. Yelp reviews: I keep using them, so I decided to start contributing them.
  50. Decorations: Mikko's crafty love.
  51. Christmas on the way: I am so excited because Mikko is. So excited.
  52. Making blog buttons for everyone, whether they ask or no. (And they do not.)
  53. Watercolors: I love reading children's books because of the beautiful illustrations.
  54. Pine nuts: They're just really good, aren't they?
  55. Fertility: My own, but also:
  56. Babies all around: My NPN friends are reproducing in droves! Guess we're syncing our cycles.
  57. Winter Crocs: They look so cute on Mikko's little (growing) feet, help keep them warmer than his usual Crocs, and I got them cheap off eBay.
  58. Cold feet warming up: Another good thing about winter.
  59. Snuggling: Sam is comfy. Mikko is huggable. Alrik is a lap lover.
  60. Mikko's smile watching JibJab. My parents make one for every holiday.
  61. Avocado: That is one excellent fruit.
  62. Clean house, for once
  63. That I remembered to put Scrooged on hold last December and save it for this December. I kept remembering at Christmastime that I'd wanted to see it again, and of course there were always a dozen other holds on it, so there was no chance of getting it from the library till March. Last year I finally realized: Put it on hold anyway, and suspend the hold till December. I'm now first in line and can get it whenever I please. Ha!
  64. An Improvised Christmas Carol: I probably won't even go this year, what with the babysitting conundrums presented therein, but I have such good memories from the years I have been able to go. Tiny Tim with giantism! Hee.
  65. Growing boys: So fast.
  66. Running: I love how strong I feel.
  67. Sewing machine set up: For so long, it was tucked away and I had to get it out if I wanted to sew, so I barely ever did. I love that it has a place now. Even if I still can't sew very much. Because I have a baby who sleeps in that room. But whatever.
  68. Sleeping baby: For such is good.
  69. Boys playing with dolls
  70. Preschooler hugging baby, all day long
  71. Hand turkeys (make one today!)
  72. Fuzzy footie pajamas
  73. NPN community I can now call friends: I am so honored and blessed to be a part of this amazing group of volunteers and thoughtful parents. I learn from them so much, and am overwhelmed by the love they put out into the world.
  74. Experiments in natural family living: I'm excited, despite it all.
  75. Finding my spray bottle of vinegar: It was hiding! On the shelf where it's supposed to go! I can clean now. (Oh, wait.)
  76. Garden tucked in for winter: Aw.
  77. City life
  78. Water taxi: What a fun way to go downtown!
  79. Fruit rolls: What a fun thing to buy downtown!
  80. Honeycrisp apples: I am truly eating my apple a day.
  81. Rainier cherries: Not in season right now, but they deserve a shout-out.
  82. Taco Time: They never sneer at making my son an uncooked, deconstructed quesadilla, and they always let him take more than one number to his table.
  83. Restaurants we love within walking distance: Yea, Alki!
  84. Baby Diaper Service: On our second diapered baby now.
  85. Six-month photo shoot (pictures to come)
  86. New friends: We're inviting an attachment parenting family we've never met to Thanksgiving, and we've recently connected with kindred souls at our new church.
  87. Hand-me-down toys: Booyah for twins who are just a bit older than my baby.
  88. Leaf rubbings: Mikko's autumn excitement.
  89. The beach: It's small, and cold this time of year, but I love it.
  90. Living near water: My dream come true.
  91. Clean water: I don't want to take the very basics for granted.
  92. Food to eat and eat and eat: It is Thanksgiving, after all.
  93. Holding hands, with big and small
  94. Backrubs, from big and small. (I will love you forever if you give me a decent backrub. I'm that easy.)
  95. Wool dryer balls: I'm giving them as Christmas presents!
  96. Chocolate
  97. Our first Thanksgiving: We've had Thanksgivings before this, of course, but this is the first year we're making turkey (turkey crepes, but still) and having people over to our house. It feels very grown-up and holidayish.
  98. My online community: I've come to cherish my readers and fellow bloggers so dearly. I never knew when I started blogging what a fellowship I would come to find.
  99. That feeling when you wake up and you're still groggy and you doze for awhile
  100. Reading my friends' gratitude lists: Amanda, Jorje, Rachael, Christine, Jennifer, Amy, Jennifer, Amy (no, I'm not stuttering), Kelly, Joella, Mandy, Zoie, CatholicMommy, Christine, Christy, Melissa, Carrie, Laura