Yummy Yummy.

On yo gabba gabba Danielle learns that "there is a party in my tummy." Carrots and green beans want to go to the party. Whenever she sees the song she wants to food in the song- too bad we didn't have any more bananas this morning. There are literally hundreds of foods that want to go to the party in my tummy every day. On Saturday we went to someone's house and they made the best ziti pasta I've ever had. They offered to give it to us and I was shameless enough to say I did want their food. Which is what we ate Sunday and Monday. I would love to be part of that group that is getting the zucchini from people who have too much in their garden- or better yet more of their zucchini bread. Unfortunately Zucchini Bread can be very dry.
What can make Zucchini bread tasty? Chocolate frosting. And even better, get a mini loaf from someone else who has already added chocolate frosting and mix it with pink vanilla funfetti frosting.
Frosting is like ranch dressing that way- you always need just a little more.

Now if only someone would make me more bread for my leftover frosting...


I am exhausted.

I have to say one of my favorite things is cute little babies who have eyes that go just a tiny bit cross eyed. Mark is a squishy little cuddle. He is so different from Danielle- he just wants us to hold him all day. Or to nurse all day. Hello slow baby- Danielle wasn't cuddly at all so it is still fun. I don't know what I will do in four months when he still wants to be carried everywhere- or in 14 months.

Lots of people have brought us food which is really nice since I am exhausted. I have done the dishes twice since the baby arrived and finally put up the photos in the nursery. Turns out newborns will sleep through you pounding nails into the walls.
Mark still doesn't have very much hair on the top of his head, except a tiny swirl that looks a bit like a comb over- luckily the sides are growing quite nicely so maybe he will look like a very old man soon. Mark went on a road trip this week to pick up Danielle. We really missed her on Tuesday so we packed everyone up and got Danielle early. Danielle hasn't been to a park since she has been back, but she has watched some yo gabba gabba and sang about happy thoughts a lot. She has learned a lot from yo gabba gabba- like whenever I get frustrated she knows to tell me to keep trying- don't give up. I tell her the same thing when she things it is too hard to throw away her trash in the floor.
If she knows hot to find my wipes and diapers and throw away the dirty diaper and wash her hands afterwards maybe she is ready to be potty trained.
If only I could stay awake long enough to do it.


the Nursery

We are still working on getting all the things on the wall in the Nursery. I meant to do it the day before the baby was born but I felt really sick all day so the wall clings aren't up. And the frames for the photos actually didn't get here until after Mark did.

John did most of the work in the nursery. I still can't believe I have a nursery- am I even old enough for that? We replaced the closet with this organizer from Rubbermaid, which we got at Lowes. I really like it- John painted the closet and room to match an Amy Butler print that will be in the bedding I made. Right now Kayleen Perry is quilting the baby quilt that I made. She does really nice machine quilting work. The tree wall vinyl is available at the GAP and the number wall art is from Land of Nod. Mark installed the ceiling light and fan which I love.

What you can't see is the dresser that we stole from our bedroom. We are using it as a changing table and also using a bookcase. I decided that I would make all the baby stuff so he doesn't have very many blankets. Turns out it is easier to make stuff for other people, but I did make the large minky blanket on the glider, and all the blankets in the closet. A while ago I found the quilt and A mat (which is actually a bath mat) at the pottery barn- the quilt was less than 20 dollars. I bought it even though it was for a boy thinking it would be a good present for someone who was having a baby- it was a good idea since two short years later I am the one having the baby. The crib bedding isn't exactly what I would want, but it is made. All of Mark's clothes until he is size 12 months are hung up in the closet. Turns out it really is much more fun to buy clothing for girl babies.


That's my Name

Sara was nice enough to invite us to visit before the baby was born. So we got to go to the Jersey Shore for labor day. I wanted to go while I still could, whatever that means. Someone told me that and even though I don't think having a baby is a prison I was like- yes I have to go while I still can. Sara gave Danielle a really nice Melissa and Doug sign for her door and you can personalize them. As I added Danielle's name every five seconds she asked for a sticker for herself. It was for her so I gave Danielle a wonderful name of her own. It reminds me of her constant nagging when I am doing things.
Eddy also wanted some pink stickers so I got him a name too. I thought it was super funny and laughed and laughed and made Sara take pictures. We used it as a teaching moment- both of them can read their names and were happy to run around the house announcing their new names.

I wonder if Sara regretted that gift.


Dear Baby,

Dear Baby Mark,
please stop peeing on my hands when I change you.


Good Bye Hospital

We left the hospital today. I really wanted to leave yesterday but I just realized that they don't have a lady with a cup full of prescription pain killers at my house so maybe I want to go back. When I got to the hospital it seemed like no one really believed I was in labor. They asked me how much water I lost when my water broke. That was a confusing question. Almost as confusing as when they asked me if I wanted to wait for a while for my contractions to be worse before I got an epidural.
My veins were bad enough to give them two hours- then I had the baby 15 minutes after getting the epidural. NO I do not want to walk around- I want you to walk to the anesthesiologist and get them to put in an IV that won't fall out, because you can't. John tells me I start making funny faces at people as labor goes on. I tried to do deep breathing like Sara said but it just didn't work. (speaking of Sara what the heck happened to my kitchen- How did you get the floor so clean? Seriously I have no idea what she used but it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside). Deep breathing my eye- what about breaking things? I thought of a few things I wish I had brought with me.
1. Peanut M&M's- I think I should have eaten some- even if the nurses say no.
2. A soundtrack- people sometimes listen to music to calm them down. I would like Linkin Park or Tool- because why would I want to listen to music that made me feel angry? Start angry, and that will help.
3. Socks. Oops I forgot.
4. Linens so i don't get a rash from the hospital detergent.
5. Fruit Loops. I like them.

I don't fully understand hospitals. You ask the nurse for drugs after delivery and they ask you how many you need and why and how much pain you are in. The nurse walks in and gives you that- do you really need these look? Then they ask you if you are sure and how many you want and if you are in pain. I guess the doctor thought I might be when he said I could take drugs. My sister in law doesn't take them because the side effects of taking them is worse than the pain she is in. The only side effect I noticed was a warm fuzzy happy feeling- like when you are in labor and in pain and then get an epidural and the world is manageable again.
Also asking someone who just had contractions if they are in pain is like a joke. What is your pain? Compared to labor? Probably a zero on a scale of one to ten, because I don't feel like I am dying.
This same nurse who doesn't want to give you drugs does want to give your baby formula. I sent Mark there and he kept coming back hungry and screaming-the nurses solution was formula even though my milk was in. So much for the nursery I guess- The drugs helped me manage the stress of having to feed him myself.
I bet a little Metallica would have helped even more.


Baby Mark

Well we officially turned in the papers so the baby will be named Mark David Madsen. My uncle Mark came and visited with Sara and their kids- Danielle is visiting them this week. I am super excited that they are watching her- She is excited about her baby (a doll we bought from Target) but still wants to hold Mark all the time and tells him not to cry. I can't believe people came from New Jersey to visit me in the hospital- I wish I had more family in the area but I was also surprised how well rested I was today. It was nice to sit in the hospital and pretty much sleep most the day while John and Mark put together the office at home. Why didn't I just sleep last time I had a baby? Are second babies usually easier? That's what everyone tells me. The nursing staff seems way more laid back here and I wonder if it is Pennsylvania or that I already have a daugheter. Sadly I didn't get one of those massive water bottles with the bendy straws. I really wanted one of those. I cried when I realized I left it at the hospital with Danielle.
Little Mark loves John. He smiles for John. I liked this photo of John and the baby- John looks cute. Little Mark also seemed to like big Mark.
Today John brought me flowers. I guess the first shop he went to burned down. Then the second shop was closed. I watched a movie about shaken baby syndrome and then cried. I'm not sure if it was about the video or just a surge of hormones.
Jen asked about Danielle's haircut. I gave her that haircut- they kept messing it up at the salon and her bangs kept taking over more and more of her head so I thought I would prevent the wall of bangs from happening to her like it did to me. Little pieces from the side always end up in the front though. Maybe I will become one of those awesome ladies who cut their husband's hair. John's hair would probably look like a two year old cut it, but I have to try a few more times to make up the difference of buying the haircutting kit. Who knows, maybe I will find my true life calling. I have never really had one before.
Now you know I am tired and a little drugged up after baby- someone should make a rule about not blogging when you are so muddy headed.



John explained how to load the photos. and now I am tired. Danielle loves Mark and always wants to pet him. and you can't really see but this is one of the times the IV blew- my hand got a little swollen- luckily it was just water.


Goodbye Alien HTML

Well, it's been a few months since I was so grossed out by the floating alien baby that I had to put it on my blog. Then I had to move it down because it is scary. But today you might notice that the alien disappeared. Probably not though. This morning I woke up at 4:00 and started having contractions. I decided to clean the whole downstairs because in my experience the beginning of contractions usually means you have HOURS and HOURS to kill but you can't really sleep. Then my water broke around 6:45 (which totally blew my mind- it didn't happen last time until I was in the hospital I think literally having the baby). We have some photos but this computer doesn't have an SD slot. I won't load them until we get home- Probably on Sunday. At 11:10 I had a baby- we are naming him Mark David Madsen. Here are some of my thoughts.
1. He is way more mellow than Danielle.
2. I love epidurals- I wanted mine faster than I got it again, but I am GLAD I got one.
3. The other day someone was telling me their labor story and I was jealous because it sounded easy. I felt guilty because why wouldn't I wish them a good labor?
4. One of my friends' husbands said she picks a date and has the baby on that day- my day was actually yesterday so I guess I don't have the touch.
5. Contractions feel way different after your water breaks.
6. I have terrible veins. But after two blown IV's and one anesthesiologist it stuck- so it was better than last time.
7. I am glad we have a cute little baby.
8. I am going to go to sleep right now.


My First House

I am finally posting an exterior photo of the house we got. Everyone will still have to wait to see the yellow bathroom which I think is really the highlight of the house. Who doesn't want a vintage yellow fiberglass tub with a matching sink and toilet?
I really liked it and also a split level house with a bigger yard. We decided to get this one because I guess most people don't like split level houses. I was so scared and nervous to actually buy a house and I still can't believe that we bought a house. You can see the nicely mowed lawn. I mowed the lawn Monday and I am really proud of myself. You see I saw that I needed to clean the kitchen floor so I did what any sane mother would do- went outside to mow the lawn in the hopes that I would be able to tell someone about being 39 weeks pregnant and mowing my lawn. Now the two readers of my blog know. Mowing the lawn will not make you go into labor. Neither will planting bulbs. Or trimming the shrubs. But it will ensure that you walk inside happy that you didn't clean the kitchen floor first since you just trudged in some grass.
I used a bag this time- mulching lawn mower my eye. Which brings me to the next thing- do you see the entryway?

- I need ideas. I want to replace the side windows that are painted (off white even though the rest of the house is white) with wooden side panels and different glass. We are also thinking about a new front door but we have a screen that you can see in this photo. I like screen doors but I have a hard time opening the one we have.
I think some of the things in our entryway are hideous- the bushes are overgrown (they have been significantly trimmed back for this photo) and the walkway is super narrow. Not even normal sized- non pregnant people really make it. I guess only parts of it are hideous. This photo features John's ripstick and the tie out I put Austin on the other day. You might also notice that we have a fence in our driveway. Lots of work to do if anyone wants to come I still haven't torn out the bushes yet because I feel like maybe I should wait until we have a fence in and fixing the front is a remote possibility. I've been looking at front yards and getting ideas- it is exciting to think about putting in a walkway myself. I'm going to probably wait until after the baby which might mean I will wait until next spring- but hopefully I will be putting in the new steps sometime in October.

Now if only I can get those boxes in my basement unpacked...


Lemon Jacquard Tablecloths, Lemon | Williams-Sonoma

Lemon Jacquard Tablecloths, Lemon | Williams-Sonoma

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Another reason to drive to New York

Sara told me about a great website with exciting shoes. they are called Fluevog shoes and I like them. the founder is Canadian which could turn some people off-but he is from Vancouver which I think is one of the coolest cities on earth. Maybe only one of the coolest cities I've ever been to, but still....
I think there are several pair that I really need. for example there is a pair called Berlin Mitte that would make me feel good about chasing around a toddler. the Wearever Merci shoes have a fun retro feel that I love, and the little bell heel seems really fun.

the site has a giveaway for Moby tickets which I totally entered and people were voting for either pink or purple and orange shoes. The onange ones are really great but I think there is something so wonderful about wearing pink shoes. Danielle is also partial to pink shoes (although honestly I don't know if her crocs are her favorite shoes or her butterfly boots.) Although i love the purple and orange I was sad I didn't make it in time to vote for the pink ones. Here is a copy of the Moby info. You should click here to visit their news and see what they are all about.

We have 2 tickets to give away for every North American stop of Moby's "Wait For Me" Tour from September 17th to October 23rd, 2009. If you live in or close to one of the 24 cities that Moby is playing in this Fall, you can win a pair of tickets to his show. In addition, all ticket winners will be entered to win a brand new pair of John Fluevog Shoes! (If you wonder why Moby and Fluevog chose each other for this contest, put it this way... the longest word you can make from the letters of Moby and Fluevog is 'Lovebug'...)

All of these shoes would be great on a Sunday. Or a monday. I am pretty sure I have a shirt that would match the green on the boots.


Insomnia and Fall Down Tree

Turns out that I can't really stay asleep for very long these days. I really hate it when people tell me that even though I want to have the baby now in a few weeks I will be wishing the baby was still inside of me because I will be so tired. I don't know many new moms who wish themselves 38 weeks pregnant, especially when they don't sleep anyway. So I do what anyone would do if they knew they should be asleep and will be VERY tired soon... I get a water bottle and a bowl of cereal and shop online. then I think about crying when I am ready to go back to bed and Danielle wakes up. Can this house be causing insomnia? A few mornings I've woken up only to find Danielle at some point in the night has climbed into our bed and is now kicking me in the face or has a big wet diaper in my face. Why am I the only one who wakes up to the smell of a diaper across the bed from me?

Here is something I love.
Well I found some really cute prints for the nursery. Falldowntree.etsy.com makes the cutest little animal prints. this set of six prints is only 75 dollars. they measure 10 by 10 and I think the beaver is surprisingly silly and fun. If you look at Falldowntree.com you can see more of their work.
Daniele really loves animals right now, especially frogs it turns out. She looks at the prints and talks about the new baby, then shows me her frogs. Her frogs go to visit the other animals in the babies room, and sometimes the animals come to visit the frogs or just generally go missing.

Falldowntree also has some really cute robot prints and one about monster friends. If you go to their website they have printable coloring pages. I printed out the Giraffe which is a standard 8 by 10 size. I really like it when they have pages that print on only one page instead of that extra blank page that always seems to come out as a bonus when I print things.
I was going to post about the artist but I can't find much. His name is Adam and he likes to draw and he sent my prints in a record album cover. That seemed really smart because it arrived unscathed. I guess they really don't try to bed records, which is different for the Postal Service.
Like many cute things in my life, I am pretty sure that Rachelle found this artist. Looking through her favorites on etsy is one of the best ways that I've found to shop.


Dear Friend

Dear friend,
I was so excited to hear about your victory of getting "back in your jeans" after the baby. I have to admit I never accomplished that with my first baby.
Until I saw the picture. I know it is really frustrating to get pregnant and gain weight and not quite be able to button up that top button anymore. Also wearing those bright red jeans with tapered legs that looked almost pegged at the bottom was quite a fashion statement.
I don't know how to say it politely, but maybe you should have waited a little longer. Maybe actually you should throw those jeans away. You have asked me many times about your clothes and if they are good and I never quite have the heart to tell you that they are, but you wear jeans that are ridiculously too small. Now the biggest jean offense is wearing tapered leg jeans with that extra room in the front for your paunchy front butt and I know that you don't have one- so I salute you there. If you just had a baby and people learn about your anatomy changes from your jeans probably you need bigger jeans. Maybe Tori Spelling could wear those jeans you picked. If you ever get a wedgie from jeans you have probably selected the wrong jeans to wear.
Please stop buying pants that fit you. Please start getting them a little baggy. What you consider baggy might just fit you. I'm sure a salesperson could help you find something called a "bootcut," or a "tunic top." I've really only had one friend that successfully pulled off the pink jeans. I am not sure but when they have fashion tips for the "pear shape" I think they should tell you to avoid super duper tight jeans.
Congratulations on the baby and being super skinny.
Good luck and hope you get lots of sleep,


The Next Ten

Well future friends, it is time for you to invite us over to your house for a wonderful meal. Or just drop by some muffins. If you are always complaining about your spouse or talking about how you have a new get rich scheme I am not interested. But I will participate in your child's fund raiser. Especially if they are a girl scout or selling world's finest chocolates- does anyone do that anymore? I could literally cry about the lack of mint meltaways in my life. the one's from World's Finest Chocolates. YUMMY.
I was happy to see comments from my last post- but did Brooke just say she was a right wing nut job? I don't know how to respond. maybe with more questions.

Here are some more important questions.
1. How many pairs of shoes do you own? What do you think about "comfort shoes?" Just yesterday I was looking online and saw what looked like the perfect pair of brown closed toed high heeled pumps. but they are $365.00 so I decided not to buy them. Just like the shoes I fell in love with in New Jersey that were $700.00. and pink.
2. How often would you say that you shop online?
3. How do you feel about dogs?
4. What type of pizza do you like to eat?
6. Ice cream?
7. What is your favorite board game?
8. Do you like to work on projects? Name five things on your project list right now.
9. Do you live in superlatives? That can be quite amusing. We have a friend with the BEST AND BIGGEST LIFE EVER! Of course our other friend with the HARDEST AND WORST life ever doesn't like them. Strange how that works out.
10. Will you make me muffins or cookies? When?

Stay tuned for the third and final installment of questions....


Baby Names

I like the name Jack. but wouldn't it be that much cooler to name him Jackal and call him Jack? As baby comes closer I feel more than a little unprepared in terms of names. And everything for that matter. Here are some end of pregnancy thoughts.

  1. Muffins. Yum. I love muffins.
  2. Naming kids is a terrible thing to do. Don't EVER get personalized items for a baby before they are born. although I have a onesie for my baby that proclaims him an astrological sign that will not be true if he is born after the 23rd. Wishful thinking.
  3. Why don't people name their children the name they want to give them? My friends have some friends who named their baby one thing and call him an altered version of his middle name. Now I'm not adopted but I am sure that a name identity crisis is hard- like finding out you are adopted. Unless you don't like your name.
  4. On Sunday I took my shoes off and my fat feet were swollen through part of the strap. Maybe it is time to stop going to church. There was a lady there with an ENTIRE TOE sticking out of her "peep toe" shoes. I wanted to do an intervention. She was also wearing black nylons with the line just a little crooked across her fat peeping toe.
  5. Why does the thought of vacuuming the stairs make me want to cry? Sleep first, then cry.
  6. I hate moving. I hate even more other people going through my stuff and making comments. The exception to this rule is my sisters, who seem to like everything I get and are generally quite understanding about why it is important to buy clearance boy bedding when you had a girl. Otherwise we wouldn't have any bedding now. Except flower bedding that Danielle does not want to share. She told me.
  7. Why would anyone name a show "Toot and Puddle"? Stupid.
  8. Why am I awake right now?
  9. Why do people ask you if you need help unpacking when you are clearly very pregnant? This is like the stupidest question in the world, asking someone who is in labor how they are doing. They are not doing well. It is slightly rude to ask- like asking someone who just threw up all over their own shirt how they are feeling. The Best Ever!
  10. Muffins.


New house New Friends

So I decided that I might need to find some new friends. Not that I'm unwilling to drive two to four hours to visit people I already know since I have to go that far anyway to find a place to shop, but some people seem to think it is too far.
Finding friends is an intensely painful experience. It's like a job interview except you never have the promise of getting paid. I hate getting to know people and then realizing they don't really like you. Which is why I like hanging out with people for specific reasons- like "these are Andy and Nadell, we all like to play games." I guess most of our friends like to play games. I thought of an ongoing potential friend interview process that I should start instituting. With a series of questionnaire that can be filled out online- maybe in the comment section of my blog- I can screen people for their interests and figure out if we should try to schedule something.
My other least favorite thing is scheduling something with other people. Calling someone to schedule a hang out is almost as bad as ordering pizza.

First 10 questions.
1. Do you like playing games? Describe.
2. Describe your political feelings. What do the words "right wing nut job" mean to you? What about "liberali"?
3. Are you sarcastic?
4. What does the word "worldliness" mean to you. Essay answers are accepted.
5. How religious do you think you are? Why?
6. Describe how a two year old child should act.
7. Do you have any food/pet allergies?
8. What do you like to eat when hanging out with other people?
9. How do you feel about Wal Mart?
10. How late is too late for starting a hang out on a weekend? Weekday?

These questions are important. It is difficult finding couple friends because you have to like both of them and even more difficult when children are involved because then you have to like their kids and your kids have to like their kids.
Sometimes I almost understand people who don't seem to hang out with anyone.
Except then there is no one to play board games with, and Danielle probably shouldn't see some of the movies I want to see.