Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Meet the Howard's: Ella edition

Name: Ella Noeme

Age: 3yr. 5mo.

Sign: Cancer

Likes: Jumping, laughing, sweet potatoes, silly things, singing, dressing up like a princess, dancing, ice cream

Dislikes: being teased by Malina, being interrupted while she's playing, ghosts

Hobbies: ballet, tap dance, and gymnastics at the Little Gym, finging money on the ground to put in her piggy bank, collecting stickers

Malina's favorite thing about Ella: "Ella's not bothering me"

Best known for: confusing sentences: "I took the marker, but I didn't, but I did",

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Hooray! Dave got a promotion at work and is now the foreman on the job where he works. Instead of having some schmoe tell him what to do, he's gonna be the schmoe telling everyone else what to do! ; ) He has been working really hard for this and it's nice to see hard work rewarded. Congratulations, we are so proud of you!

* "My father taught me to work; he did not teach me to love it." --Abraham Lincoln
* "People might not get all they work for in this world, but they must certainly work for all they get."--Frederick Douglas
* "The reward for work well done is the opportunity to do more." --Jonas Salk

Friday, December 11, 2009

All I want for Christmas.....

At Christmas time, we tend to do more fun shopping than we normally do all year. Buying and making presents for friends, family, and little kiddos. Consequently I always see ALOT of stuff that if I could, I would buy because they are on sale at this time of year and it is usually the cheapest price I can find them. (usually). It takes all my will power not to just give in and spend the 100's of dollars I'd like to but, if I could ; ) , this is what I'd buy:

A Homesteading series, which compiles alot of the "home-craft" I'm into, all in one set: www.franklinsprings.com/films/hsbsixpack/

And always, always, always, I am dreaming about eating at The Herb Farm (yum): http://www.theherbfarm.com/dining/
(The Herb Farm never has "sales" to speak of, the cold-weather just makes me think of good food! : D)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Meet the Howard's: Jackson edition

Name: Jackson Vassar

Age: 3 2/3 mo.

Sign: Leo

Likes: smiling, laughing, making funny noises, being naked, music, being sung to, splashing in the bath tub, Mommy, his sisters talking to him, his dangly elephant toy--when he can grab onto it

Dislikes: being cold, wet diapers, being alone, his dangly elephant toy--when he CAN'T grab onto it

Hobbies: breast feeding, shopping with Mommy, kicking and wiggling when he gets excited

Teeth: teething, expecting first tooth soon

Sleeping: average at night is 5-6 hrs. before he wakes up, although he's slept up to 10 hrs.

Best known for: being a happy, easy-going baby

Thursday, November 26, 2009


I like Thanksgiving. It's probably one of my favorite holidays. It's not over-commercialized, there is no religious affiliation, and you get to eat. But mostly because, you're just supposed to hang out with your family and be grateful that you have them. Even if for the other 364 days of the year, you're not.

I am fortunate to be the youngest of my family. I say fortunate because as the youngest in a family you do a lot of watching and listening; consequently you learn alot. So I just wanted to say:

Thank you to my Dad, for teaching me to stand up for myself.

Thank you to my mom, for teaching me to set standards.

Thank you to my brother Brandon, for showing me that it's good to be smart; it makes you knowledgeable and interesting.

Thank you to my brother Cameron, for showing me how to laugh at myself.

I love all of you and I am very Thankful to have such an interesting and dynamic family.
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Ps. Don't ask me to be sweet and sentimental tomorrow--you only get one day a year! ;D

Friday, August 7, 2009

Day 5 (Sun. Aug. 2)
Dave's truck was in need of a tune-up so he took Malina with him up to his parent's house, so he could work on his truck, and I could have some time to rest. Ella stayed with me so we could have some bonding time. Ella and Malina tend to be very different children when they are away from each other; we try to separate them as much as possible.;) Ella was a very good helper and we cooked and baked the day away. It literally took us (me) all day long to make 3 things. I was really wiped out!

Day 6 (Mon. Aug. 3)
On Mondays, Malina has her dance/ballet/little Gym class. Mostly, our day involved going to her class and then relaxing. Trying to clean some, cook some, and resting alot in between. I go through phases where I have spurts of energy, and then where I'm so tired, I can barely get anything done. Right now, I am just still recovering from Thrus-Fri. fun and excitement!!

Day 7 (Tues. Aug. 4)
First thing this morning, I had an appt. with my midwife. She said I am 5cm. dilated and 90% effaced. I should keep the appt. that I have for next Tues. but she thinks she will see me before then. (She has said that, every appt. for the last 3 weeks!) :D I'm not sure why I am not going into actual labor, I mean I AM already half way there........

Right after that, it was time to take Ella to her dance/ballet/little Gym class. Malina and Ella are in the exact same class, just on different days. Again, we try and separate them as much as possible. Since they are so close in age, they are practically twins, spending all their time together, and doing the same things. Fostering their individuality, and giving them a chance to shine away from each other, has become a priority. (Yes, I have stopped dressing them alike).

At Ella's dance class I started feeling dizzy and light headed, so again, the rest of this day was spent resting, resting, and more resting.

Day 8 (Wed. Aug. 5)
I must have hit another one of my energy spurts because I started the morning off with a mission. I am not crafty but I want to be. One of my new favorite websites is www.make-baby-stuff.com because it shows some really neat projects--even a few I can do! :) I found an idea for a cheap wall mural that I was determined to get done in one day. (I am notoriously known for starting projects and then not finishing them!!) So first I cleaned out my trunk. Then we were off to Walgreens to refill printer ink and the dollar store for cheap picture frames. Next to Michael's craft store but they didn't have everything I needed so we went further down the road to JoAnn's fabric store. We finally got home and I did get the mural finished. I don't have a picture of the mural but I do have a the picture I used to make the mural. (having problems with the USB cord for my camera, again)

I divided the picture into eighths and put each one into a picture frame. It didn't print out as vibrant as I would have liked but it does add a nice little something to Jackson's "nook". Believe it or not, this took most of our day, and then Dave was home; which means dinner, bath and bed (for all of us!).

Day 9 (Thurs. Aug. 6)
Little Jackson has several "due dates". Today marks 40weeks from the day of conception; Aug. 7th is when I think he will come; Dave thought he was going to come Aug. 4th; my mom thinks he will come Aug. 8th; my original Doctor's office gave me a due date of Aug. 9th, based on my early ultrasound. Rarely do little babies actually come on their "due date" but this little guy might not come on ANY of them!!

I am still feeling pretty ambitious so we went to Tacoma to bring some things to the consignment shop and to visit one of my favorite parks--Titlow Park. We walked along the beach and found some little crabs that I let the girls' hold. We walked the length of the beach and then down the path right next to railroad tracks. At the end there are outdoor picnic tables and benches, so we sat down and had a snack. On the other side of the railroad tracks there are 2 different playgrounds and we played in each for a little while. At the first playground we seen a raccoon in a tree, trying to get comfortable enough to sleep. (right as a train passed by :D) Then we walked around a swamp that filters into the Puget Sound, to the other playground where we saw a doe and her fawn. Though they retreated in the woods when they saw us coming it was still pretty cool. Who needs the stinkin zoo? (Well, I do, because right now at the PDZA they have camels, and you get to ride one of them!! :D But since I am 9+ mo. pregnant, I'm sure its out of the question. :( Darn.)

On the way back to our car I picked blackberries from the bushes that lined the street right next to the woods. I personally hate black berries but the girls' love them, and they kept saying "mmmm, I got a sweet one" every time I picked a ripe one for them. :) It was turning out to be a pretty darn good day but it was only 11 am. What to do with the next 8hrs?

Well we finished getting some things at the consignment shop, got lunch, but then Ella peed her pants (and car seat) so we had to go home. At home the girls' watched the new movie they got at the consignment shop while I worked on a sewing project for Dave. Next we went on a walk to the "Chocolate milk river", which is the Puyallup River next to our house. I was hoping to find more blackberries and this time brought a container to fill up with the gushy berries. They were big and plump down by the edge of the river and the girls' had a good time building sand castles while I filled our blackberry container. Despite all the walking I did, which did cause some contractions, Jackson didn't really seem to care, and so I am still without a little baby.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Day 4 (Aug. 1)

Dave has worked the last couple of saturdays and so, hasn't seen Malina in her soccer class yet. I call it a 'class' because they are just supposed to be learning skills and they don't actually play any games yet. In Puyallup, the youngest age for a soccer team is 6 yr. old. Still, Malina really enjoys the class.

So Dave opted to take Malina to her soccer class and Ella and I headed over to our farmer's market. We walked around and found some eggplant, leeks, and golden squash but then I started getting dizzy. Our farmers market is in the middle of town @ a park w/ a playground, that is right outside of the library. This makes it very easy to bring the kiddos with. So after we got some veggies I let Ella play @ the play ground while I tried to get my strength back and stop my head from spinning. Dave came with Malina about 10min. later. We were going to get Dave his first ever library card that day but since I wasn't feeling good, we opted just to go home. But first, Dave HAD to get a couple of lbs. of clams to eat for lunch. :)

We went home, had lunch and Dave took the girls outside to ride bikes while I went to the grocery store. After that, we just kicked back and relaxed. I'm trying my hardest to view these last preggo days as a vacation of sorts; painful, tiring and hot but a vaction, none the less. I mean, what IS a vacation? Eating out, sleeping in (when I CAN sleep), trying to enjoy the beautiful weather, and doing as many activities as possible. That's about what I've been doing, just throw in lots of painful contractions and pressure! :)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Day 3 (July 31st)

With all the excitement going on Thurs. and all the walking around I did, I managed to sleep for 12hrs. last night. This morning I woke up and @ 7:30am and about a half hour later Brandon called me. So I headed off to pick up the girls in Seattle. I had heard that they were doing free tours of the coast guard and naval boats. So when I got to Brandon and Carrie's house I kidnapped them for afternoon and we all went to see the "big boats".
It was pretty cool and Malina, Finn and Ella seemed to really like it. Part of the tour brought us through the 'galley' and with 2 pregnant ladies and 3 toddlers, there was an almost unanimous decision to get some lunch. (poor Brandon was out numbered).
We went to the Seattle waterfront and got some food (& candy)and then let the kiddos run around on the boardwalk. The girls and Finn seen the indoor carousal so we of course HAD to let them take a spin. :D After that though, Carrie was more than ready for a nap and I was feeling pretty hot and tired myself (but what is new?). The girls fell asleep instantly on the way home--mission accomplished.
It was really nice to spend time my brother and his family. I rarely get to see them, so it was a nice treat.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Day 2 (Thurs. July 30)

This guy is a little trickster. So I woke up this morning @ 5am and my undies and bed were soaking wet. I thought 'great, now I'm peeing the bed, fantastic'. But none of it smelled like urine. Naturally I thoguht my water had broken and I needed to go see my midwife. Although I wasn't having any contractions, I wasn't going to risk an at home delivery, or a delivery in the car, so I called Dave and told him my water broke and he should probably come home; he was just starting work. Next I called my mom and told her that my water had broke but that I had no contractions yet. She said she would be on her way.

Well Dave made it home in a record 35min. and finished helping me get everything ready. My mom came soon after and then we called Brandon to come pick up the girls'. We left the girls with my mom to wait for Brandon whiile Dave and I headed to the hospital.

I wanted my midwife to check me and see what was going on but she had just gotten off a 24 hr. on-call shift and so had the day off today. Instead they just sent me straight away to the hospital to get checked in. Well, after I got to the 14th floor and talked with my nurse, got all my info. the on-call midwife came and checked to see if indeed my water had broken. It had not. (?!)

The midwife explained that this late in the pregnancy it wasn't uncommon for a gush of fluid to exit the v-j-j that was neither amniotic fluid, nor urine. There isn't much difference between the gush of fluid I had and that of amniotic fluid so, no matter what I would have had to come in, but still, I wasted the entire day of 3 other people. :{

The upside was that Brandon wanted to watch the girls for the night and Dave wasn't going back to work, so we got to have the whole day together, children-free. There still isn't much for me to do in this hot weather, except to be near air conditioning or alot of fans, so we spent most of the day shopping and going out to eat. It was nice and oddly quiet. I even tried to stay up late to fully enjoy my kid-free evening but I still fell asleep @ 7:30 pm. Dave fell asleep @ 8pm or so. Yup, that's us, living 'lavida loca'! :D

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Okay, I guess I can wait.(Day 1)

I went to the ol' midwife yesterday and I am only 4 1/2 cm dilated. Which means to say, that this kid isn't coming out anytime soon. He gave us all a nice little tease, with the dilating and the contractions but, in the end, he probably won't come until pretty darn close to his due date(or even after). Okay, I guess I can wait. But I'm only giving him 10 days. (Because that's his due date). But what can a hot, huge, miserable, tired pregnant lady due for 10 days to keep herself entertained and occupied? Well, that's exactly what we're going to find out.

Day 1 (Wed. July 29th)
I got up this morning @ a whopping 3:45am. Why? Because it's so darn hot I would rather be up this early and go to bed early, then have to move my bulk around the house in the hottest part of the day (early evening, night). I'm feeling crafty, so mostly I will be sewing in the morning, trying to finish up old projects (pictures later) and catching the sunrise. (I can't remember EVER purposely doing this, so why not now?)

We went to the movies with my old friend Brittny and managed to stay in the air conditioned movie theatre and then mall for 4 hrs. Nice!

Dave's job was sooooo hot that they shut it down early, so he was already home we the girls and I got home. Double Nice!! Maybe ten days won't be as difficult as I thought. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Baby Update

I am now offically 38 weeks pregnant and I see my midwife once a week. Last week she checked me and I was 2 cm dilated. I went back to see her this last Mon. and I was 4 cm. dilated. I've had on and off contractions these last 2 weeks but no actual labor has started. With Malina and Ella I did the same thing, dilated to 4cm but no sign of labor any time soon. But with Malina, once I hit 4cm she came (on her own)about a week later. Although, once I hit 4cm. with Ella my midwife broke my water and we induced me with pitocin. (I may have jumped the gun with Ella but, I REALLY wanted to see my baby!!)So right now I'm just waiting to see when I'll go into labor; maybe in a day, maybe in 2 weeks. Mostly I just hope that when I do go into labor he doesn't come too fast! Dave has an 1 1/2 hr. drive from work, and its a 20min. drive to the hospital. SO, if he could just wait like 2 1/2- 3 hrs. to come out that would be fantastic!! My next appt. is on this next Tues. and I will have my midwife check me again......until then, I'm just waiting......waiting......waiting..... :D

Baby Budha Belly

(Can you tell that I've finally fixed the problem I had transferring my pix from my camera to my computer!?) ;)

I decided when I first became pregnant that I wanted to get a henna tattoo on my belly later on in the pregnancy when I was all round and swollen; I thought it looked really cool. So, I contacted Krysteen at Mehndi Madness(www.mehndimadness.com) and set up my appointment. In addition to henna, which is a reddish-brown stain on your skin, she also does jagua, which turns out being a bluish stain on your skin. So I did the jagua because I thought it would show up better.

It took me almost 2hrs. of driving in traffic to get to her home studio in Edmonds but it was worth it. Krysteen is a totally cool, laid back person. I picked out a mixture of 2 designs and we talked about our kids while she worked. First she puts the paste on.

After she finished, I drove home (only took me 1 hr. because there wasn't any traffic this time), and waited about 2 hrs. until it dried. After that, I could gently peel the paste off. Here's what it looks like half way.

The crazy thing about jagua is that after you peel the paste off, it is virtually invisible underneath. It takes about 2 days for it to fully oxidize and the color will show up. Here's after I took the paste off.

And here's the final result. Not as dark as the actual paste but much darker than henna would have been. It's really pretty. I love to look at my belly now.

Friday, July 17, 2009

What we've been doing this Summer........

Making Strawberry Jam

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Going to the Lake

Visiting Cousins

Malina's Ballet/Tap/Little Gym

Going to the Park

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Pregnant List Update

Let me tell you, I sure have been busy. I have been cooking up a storm. Buying food in bulk and the opening of our farmer's market has been a good motivator. Here is my revised list.

1. Get a deep freezer **Done**
2. Buy a bed for baby and I to rest/nurse/sleep on **Done**
3. 21 dinners pre-made in the deep freezer **Done**
4. 7 servings of pancakes in the freezer **Done**
5. 2 family sized servings of 4 different soups frozen in freezer (Artichoke, broccoli,_______, ________.)
6. 30 activity kits for the girls--hands on projects they can do without me, while I breast feed, etc.
7. organize the girls' closet
8. organzie the bookshelves in our room--get rid of unused books
9. sell the quad

It makes me feel better to have a good stash of dinners in the freezer. There's not much diversity, but there sure is alot of it.(lasagna meat, burritos, spaghetti sauce, and pork chops.) I also found some delicious recipes for pancakes, instead of just the plain kind. There is: Rasp. white choc. chip, blueberry, strawberry, and banana. They smelt REALLY good while I was making them; it made it very hard not to eat a couple!! :)

My next task is the soups. I'm waiting until our Farmer's Market has broccoli and leeks that have come in and then I can make my big batches. My sister Sara also gave me a delicious recipe for Chicken Tortilla soup that I can't wait to try!

On my Prego list, I did delete the muffins to make. We don't really eat muffins and so I would rather spend my precious pre-baby time on something else.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

28 Weeks Later

Is this gonna be a story about how after 28 weeks of "infection", I turn into a human-eating zombie? Well....kinda. I'm in the final leg of my pregnancy. The baby is getting bigger and I am getting bigger. So I'm not sleeping very well, and it makes me kinda cranky (*hence the human-eating zombie, although the "eating" is just a metaphor; I just bite your head off for no reason over stupid little things).

I just had my visit to my wonderful midwife Peggy and she says that I am doing fine and so is the baby. I am weighing more this pregnancy than with either of the two girls; I just hit the 170 lbs. mark, so I'm wondering if this baby is gonna be bigger. Peggy says 'no' but I have my doubts. The most I weighed pregnant at any given point, up until now, was 172 lbs, and that was the day I went into labor. I also haven't gotten very large during this pregnancy, I think my legs are actually more toned than before. So I am hoping my extra weight gain is muscle and not baby. (knock on wood).

Being so busy with 2 littles, working, family time, husband time, etc. this pregnancy has really gone by fast, a little too fast. There are 74 days left until the baby gets here and now I am a little freaked because I haven't gotten even half my list done. I guess it's turbo-nesting time. :) Here's my list of everything I would like to get done:

1. Get a deep freezer **Done**
2. Buy a bed for baby and I to rest/nurse/sleep on **Done**
3. 21 dinners pre-made in the deep freezer
4. 7 servings of pancakes in the freezer (56 total)
5. find a good muffin recipe
6. 7 servings of muffins in the freezer (28 total)
7. 2 family sized servings of 4 different soups frozen in freezer (Artichoke, broccoli,_______, ________.)
8. 30 activity kits for the girls--hands on projects they can do without me, while I breast feed, etc.
9. organize the girls' closet
10. organzie the bookshelves in our room--get rid of unused books
11. sell the quad

I know it seems like alot of food but I remember after each of the girls were born I had no energy at all and I was hungry; hungry and thirsty all the time. (because of breast feeding I'm sure) Plus, this will be the first time I have more kids than I have hands to hold each of them (literally a juggling act) and I want to get into a routine as seamless as possible! Not having to cook, at first, will be a BIG help. :)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Farmer's Market

Hooray! It's officially spring and the Farmer's Market is open in Puyallup!! For those of you who have never been to puyallup, it's very flat, pretty sunny, and right at the edge of a volcanoe. This means that there are farms, farms and more farms!! Which equals local, delicious, fresh fruits and veggies for us! Viva la Farmer's Market!! :)

Friday, May 15, 2009


Mother's Day this year, was a little different. Oh, my gorgeous little girls made me a beautiful poster, and little baby Howard kicked and punched away joyfully (his own unique way of saying 'love you mom') but I also had my car window smashed and my GPS taken out of my car. Happy Mother's Day.

Honestly the only thing that I wanted for Mother's Day was to spend it with my family, all of us doing something together. So, after picking up most of the big pieces off the seats/carseats, we all drove to the car wash to vacum all the window glass out of the car; one big happy family, cleaning up someone else's crime! Not exactly what I had in mind. Dave was more upset about it than I was. Mostly, I think it's because he's the one who got me the GPS. I was just glad no one was hurt. It's kinda sad when you feel safer in the ghetto.But really, my window was fixed the next day and now you can't even tell there was anything wrong with it.

And to celebrate Mother's Day in my own way, here are 5 things I LOVE about being a mom.

1. Every since they were born, I always got butterflies in my stomache when I see them sleep.
2. Anytime they WANT to hold my hand.
3. Knowing exactly where they are the most ticklish. (Malina: side of her ribs, Ella: inside of her leg)
4. Teaching them new songs--even though I can't sing, they don't care!
5. When I come home and they rush the door-- "Mom! Mom!" and tell me all about what they are doing.

***Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love. ~Mildred B. Vermont***


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Spring Break = Spring Fever

It is Spring Break!.....for my babysitter. She is out of town this week which means I don't have anyone to watch the kids so I can go to work. Yep. Home, ALL WEEK. I'm just teasing. I do like to be home, prefer it to any other place, honestly. But I am in my full blown nesting phase and I am doing all that I can to stay busy. That's the funny thing about hormones, you can be dead on your feet, and somehow be able to muster energy to cook and clean. Not only that but actually REALLY WANT TO! (Which is ironic because I have to sit down every hour or so, or I feel faintish.) But I suppose it's those same crazy hormones that enable you to take care of your newborn, other children, and the house on only 2 hours of sleep.

One of my newfound favorite things to do is can food. Unfortunately,it is just the beginning of Spring (you can have snow in the Spring, right?) and there is no fresh farm picked produce just yet. Since, I live in Puyallup, we have access to some FANTASTIC u-pick farms, and organic farms but nothing good really comes until June-July.

But just the other day I had an "aha!" moment. Dave and I were watching some cooking show (those that can't do, watch) and seen a recipe that looked really good but it called for orange marmalade. Turns out Dave LOVES organge marmalade! I have known the man for 6 1/2 yrs. and I NEVER knew that he LOVES orange marmalade. Oranges are on sale right now at almost every store, so I decided I had to make orange marmalade.

(Insert picture here; stupid camera) My result is 7 beautiful golden jars filled with sticky, sweet oranges. I plan on making some more this week also. I have to go to work on Sun. morning but I have 2 1/2 more days to nest, er..... I mean can. ;)

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Off to Snoqualmie!

We are headed to the Jewel concert today! It was a very nice birthday surprise from my hubby! The 'rents are watching the kiddos and I am looking forward to a stress free day entirely with Dave! She is playing at the new Snoqualmie Casino. Plus we are heading up the mountain a little early to visit the Snoqualmie Falls; which in all my 26 yrs. as a Washington resident I have never seen!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Baby, Baby, Baby, oh yeah and other stuff

We find out in one week if we are having a boy, or a girl. And for those of you who don't know, I get kinda baby crazy. This is not necessarily a bad thing except that it turns into an all consuming passion of mine; buying things for the baby, making things for the baby, talking non-stop about the baby.(It tends to run in my family)To the extent that I don't give quite enough attention to the rest of the things in my life.

Really, I need a 12-step program for my baby addiction (insert octo-mom joke here)but instead I will gush about the 7 things I am most excited about with this little baby, and then try to focus on my daily life;
1. The smell of a newborn's head
2. A little child that can't move or talk back
3. when the baby yawns
4. comparing the little-ness to everyone's big-ness
(Malina's arm was as long as my Dad's finger)
5. breastfeeding and bonding with my little baby
6. watching the baby sleeping on Dave's chest
7. the teeny-tiny newborn clothes
(actually the girls were so small, when they were born they wore preemie clothes!)

Due to the impending arrival of another little Howard we were forced to look at our finances yet again, and decide what would be beneficial for all of us. Starting from the top, the most expensive being our rent. We live in a small-ish 2 bedroom apt. in a town we really like. Yes, we could get a bigger place but we feel quality is better than quantity. (I've lived in the ghetto, I'm not going back!)

Second on the finace hot sheet would be our cars. uuggh. Most financial experts would tell you not to buy a brand new car, economically, it's cheaper to do your research and just buy used. Unfortunately neither my husband, nor I are handy with a wrench and have had unreliable vehicles in the past. Paying a little more is a trade off for having a continually reliable vehicle. This is something we decided a long time ago not to feel too guilty about. Although, my favorite car is just about anything Toyota because, they are decently priced, easy to fix, and last a long time. So we did buy my car brand new but we plan on keeping it a long time. If our tax return is big enough we will be able to pay 95% of it off, and that would certainly help with the finances.

Third most expensive bill in our house? FOOD! Yes, feeding our family is actually quite expensive and no, it's not because I'm pregnant. Because our food bill is quite large and because there is more wiggle room in it than the first 2 bills it will be getting a lrg. chunk of my attention and creativity. But here are the problems with our food shopping and cooking:
- As a family, we want meat at EVERY meal
- as a cook I am not as creative as I would like to be
- finding simple, cheap recipes is not easy
- eating the same things over and over again
- I believe in buying quality food, organic if possible
- not enough time to prepare/ make food

I'm sure I am not the first person/woman/mom to ever have this problem but, in all honesty this is the first time I've ever put my full attention to it. So wish me luck! (I'm gonna need it!)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Sad, mad, bad. bad camera.

Ah alas, I cannot figure out how to (literally) plug my USB cable that connects my camera to my computer and therefore allows me to up load my pix from my camera to my computer. This is really bumming me out! Especially because, before we moved I had no problem figuring out how to plug my camera in but now, for some reason, I cannot figure it out? (!)

Anyhow, life here continues as normal except the poor girls are going BONKERS! They are only so mess-free activities they can do indoors! They have resorted to being my little helpers, just to keep themselves entertained with something to do. This means, even if I don't want their "help", I get a double dose of it anyway! :) It seems there are a couple of things Malina can do on her own (w/ only semi-constant supervison)that makes her feel like a big kid, and that she doesn't make a bigger mess in the process of doing it (THIS is the hard part). She does a pretty good job at vacuming, unloading the clothes from the washing machine to the dryer, and putting the clean silverware away from the dish washer. It really is nice that Malina is starting to be helpful around the house, we will definitely need it when the baby is born!

Ella on the other hand, is only kinda interested in helping, when she feels like it, but mostly she's just not big enough. Malina is a big kid for her age but, Ella is kinda petite. Of course after the baby is born she won't seem so small!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Brand New Blog

I decided to start this new blog as a way to include more of the Howard family doings as a whole--not just baby stuff. Which is why it is pretty ironic that our first big announcement is that we are expecting our third little Howard!!! I had my first doctor's appointment yesterday and it has been officially confirmed that I am now 13 weeks prego. Which means I'm also out of the first trimester and hopefully almost out of the morning sickness. (a.k.a.: the anytime/ anywhere sickness)

I don't want to be the whiny pregnant lady who has had 2 kids, and really, I can't hack a little moring sickness the THIRD time around? Well that's just it, I NEVER got morning sickness with the first 2 kiddos, and this time around it is just throwing me for a loop. I've tried: little frequent meals, hard lemon candy, and peppermint tea but "it" still comes up when it wants.....so if there are any veteran moms with a few good secrets, I wouldn't mind some motherly advice! (even if your not my mom) :)

The Doctor did send me home with ultrasound pix of my tiny little baby, so I'm gonna see if I can find a way to get them on here a little bit later, right now I'm off to work!