Monthly Archives: July 2009

The Nest - Flexible Hourly Child Care - Woodinville WA

I am proud to announce the launch of my latest professional project  TheNestKids.com.

The Nest provides flexible hourly childcare in Woodinville WA.

The Nest is owned by two mothers, who are both savvy business women and stay at home parents (or should I say formerly stay at home parents :-D ).  I am so proud to know them and to have helped them to create a really nice online presence.  I wish them best of luck in their new endeavor.

I also can not wait to become a customer.   As a stay at home parent, I know I often struggle to plan appointments or meet a friend for lunch, because I always have the kids (or at least one) with me.  I don’t need a regular child care provider, but could definitely use someplace safe and fun to drop off the kids when I have something I need to do that they can’t attend.  This flexibility could be just what many of us are looking for.

They will also offer evening care for the occasional dinner out or a movie.  Finding a babysitter can be quite a challenge and even if you have a great one they are not always available.  This could provide a safe place to drop the kids that turns into a night out for them too.   I have heard a couple of whispers about the great activities they are working on and I am really impressed.

Can you tell I am excited about this one?

As far as the site goes, I collaborated with designer Michelle Poole on this one.  She created the beautiful banner, images and basic layout and then I worked directly with the business owners to turn it into a cohesive product that we are all extremely pleased with.

Like many of my sites, I used php includes to separate the code from the editable content.  This simplifies maintenance and provides an environment that the owners (should they ever decide they want to) could update themselves.   I also used php to create unique seo friendly meta data for each page within the site.   I used W3C valid css and xhtml to create a strong foundation for the site and the jquery ajax library to add a lightbox popup.

This has been a really fun project to work on.  If you live in the area, The Nest will be opening in September.  I recommend checking them out.

I haven’t been able to post the last couple of days nor will there likely be any hope of me posting in the next couple of days either. It is pushing 90 in my house right now and it isn’t even noon.

This is not normal for Seattle and yes we may be wimpy, but right now I feel like I could melt wax on my head and it may very well spontaneously combust at any moment.

On top of that the kids are cranky, I am cranky and I have a website to launch that isn’t cooperating.

Too much for this overheated stay at home mom. Today I wish I had a job so I could go to a nice air conditioned office building.

Enough bitching. Enjoy your day!

I have been a little absent for the last week or so, somewhat due to the fact that summer just boggles my mind.  I always wonder how we are going to fill the days and we strategize about how to best take advantage of the summer with trips and bbqs and house projects and then all of a sudden the summer is booked solid and half over.  It gets so busy…  How does that happen?

But the main reason for my absense has been the sickness that has run rampant through our household for the last week.  I got a really bad cold at the beginning of the week and then by tuesday Ian was throwing up.  As the week went on we both got sicker and sicker.  Mine was manageable under normal circumstances, but with him being almost scary sick, I never got the chance to rest and get better and by friday afternoon I was just in tears.  I was so damn tired I couldn’t think straight.  Thank god my mother arrived later that day and did a really impressive job of knowing exactly what would help me the most and make me feel better.  Thank-you Mom!

Ian has never  been this ill.  He is generally a really healthy kid.  I am pretty sure he got rotavirus, a very common childhood illness but it also could have been viral gastroenteritis (although none of the rest of us got sick so I doubt this).  It says that almost every child will get rotavirus by the time they are three and that in parts of the world it can be a significant cause of childhood death.  Scary and I can see if you didn’t have resources or access to decent healthcare that this could turn into something very significant for many children.

I remember Ada had this when she was about eight months old and both Karli and I got it as well.  I have also heard from several friends on their first kids that they have gotten it along with their kids recently.  Must be going around.  From what I read, you usually will not get it again or if you do it will be very mild.  When you do get it again it is often due to a new strain, which would make sense why we get it when we have kids as I am sure the strain has changed since we were kids.

So days of fever and puking and diarhea came and went and Ian aquired one nasty case of diaper rash.  Ooh, it was ugly.  We tried everything we had left over in the house and nothing was helping and he was experiencing a significant amount of discomfort.   Finally I remembered that I had heard someone at a baby shower recently talking about this amazing diaper cream you could get by asking the pharmacy.

Unfortunately I didn’t remember what it was called.  So I sent Karli to talk to the pharmacist who looked at him funny and said Uh a lot.  But finally she gave him a tub of cream called Calmoseptine.  It contains 20% zinc oxide, which is significantly higher than your average diaper cream.  It also contains menthol, calomine and lanolin among other things.

Well, let me tell you, it totally worked.  Within 24 hours the rash was really starting to look better and was all but gone in a couple of days.

I’m not sure that this was exactly what was recommended at the baby shower, but I know that I can now fully recommend it.

Mom Tip:  Calmoseptine Diaper Rash Ointment

for persistent, severe, and painful diaper rash

At our pharmacy we had to speak with the pharmacist to get this stuff, but it does appear that it is available at amazon so it may vary from place to place where you will find it.

Well, nothing earth shattering here but I thought it might be time that I post some photos. This is really hard for me, putting myself out there for the world to look at, but what the hey — here we go.

As I have said many times, I am not all of a suddenly skinny nor have I dropped three pant sizes, but I do feel different and my body is starting to change and I think that the pictures show some of that.

Before
before_frontbefore_side

July 2009
july_frontjuly_side

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This process never ceases to amaze me.  The weirdest stuff is happening to me.  I squarely chalk this up to the fact that I must have had some serious stuff built up in my system as well as a significant amount of emotional blockage.

It has taken a while and I even was starting to think that even though I felt great that maybe this wasn’t going to work for my weight loss.  I have been at this for a while now and I have experienced some amazing changes in my mood and physical well being, but not much actual weight loss.

Jon even says in the book that the more barriers you have to losing weight the longer it will take for the weight loss to begin.  Even though it has taken a long time,  I just kept going with it.  It wasn’t even like I had a lot of choice, my body was making changes and demanding different foods and I just was open to it and let it happen at its own pace.

These last couple of weeks has been really crazy with traveling and multiple dinner guests and the kids being home and Ian having a growth spurt while cutting molars and now finally I have a doozy of a cold that has taken my appetite and any desire I have to move from a horizontal position on the couch.

But in spite of all that these really amazing things have happened and also some weird ones as well.

I forgave my father.  This is the biggest of emotional barriers obliterated and something I wasn’t sure I would ever be able to do.  He hurt me so badly and I have been carrying so much anger and pain around with me for such a long time.  But that anger isn’t doing me any good, it is just holding me back and so I am letting it go.

Along with this has come a strong desire to search him out.  He is aging and alone and my guess is not too happy and he is my dad and I love him despite his many aggregious acts and faults and I want to fix things between us before it is too late.    I know that he wont want this from me because he can’t accept my own acts and faults, but I feel that our life lessons are tied together somehow and that we have a lot to learn from each other no matter how hard that may be for either one of us.

I have also felt some sort of chemical shift has taken place in my body.  I just feel different and my physical body is starting to change.  My clothes are looser and I know the weight is starting to come off.  I look completely different to myself in the mirror.

I have also gotten really sick.  I haven’t been sick with any seriousness since before I got pregnant with Ian.   My hair is also falling out.  Nothing to be worried about, but I haven’t had any hair in the shower drain since I got pregnant with Ian and now the normal amount for someone with longish hair is there.  I didn’t even lose my hair after he was born like you are supposed to.

I know it sounds crazy, but I really think that my body never adjusted to not being pregnant.  The chemicals just kept going.  Jon talks about pregnancy being a time when your body turns on the FAT programs.  Is it possible that those programs simply never got turned off?  That would certainly explain a lot of things;  My hair continuing to be thicker and healthier than normal, my late onset postpartum depression, my bomb proof immune system and my persistent lack of weight movement among many other things too personal to discuss.

But, whatever it was has definitely changed over the last couple of weeks and my weight is finally moving.   Still not getting on the scale until October, but I have a lot more faith that the number when I do will be significantly lower than it was when I began or is now.

Yea!

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I have really been enjoying  my new world of salads.  Although most of the time I stick to the basics, I have found some really great more creative offerings as well.  Nothing boring about this little number.

This salad would be perfect for apple season with fresh organic apples and fresh pressed cider from the farmers market.  But, if you can’t get it in season, I have found some really good organic unfiltered apple cider available at my grocery store.

I have written this recipe as a single serving because that is how I usually make it for myself for lunch, but you could easily double this for two or even make it big for a dinner party.

Shrimp and Spinach Salad with Cider Vinaigrette

1 serving

Cider Shallot Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 c. apple cider
  • 1 t. sugar
  • 1 slice center cut nitrate free bacon
  • 1 sliver of organic butter
  • 1 small chopped shallot (about 2 T)
  • 1 T cider vinegar
  • pinch salt
  • 1 turn of fresh ground pepper

Combine cider and sugar in a small pot over med-high heat and boil until reduced by more than half. While you are doing that cook the piece of bacon in a small skillet until desired doneness. Remove and place on a piece of paper towel to drain off any excess fat. Use that same paper towel to wipe out the skillet. Don’t remove all the grease, you want a bit for flavor, but you don’t want to cook in it. Cut the bacon into small pieces and set aside.

Add butter to skillet at melt over medium heat. Add shallot to pan and saute until beginning to caramelize and brown up. Stir in cider mixture, vinegar, salt and pepper. Poor into the saucepan you used for the cider mixture and hold over very low heat while you finish the salad.

If the dressing seems to be getting too reduced, remove from heat and then heat up quickly before topping salad.

Salad

  • 1 large handful of organic baby spinach
  • 1/2 granny smith apple, thinly sliced
  • thinly sliced red onion (generous amount within your tastes)

assemble on a dinner plate and set aside.

Shrimp

  • 5 large shrimp, thawed, shelled and deveined
  • 1/4 t curry powder
  • 1/8 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1 t olive oil

Mix together curry, cayenne and salt in a small bowl. Heat oil in the same small skillet you used for the dressing. Dip each shrimp into the spice mixture before adding to pan. Sprinkle any left over spice mixture over shrimp in the pan. Cook until pink and opaque, but not overdone.

Add hot shrimp, bacon and dressing to salad and serve immediately.

NOTE: Add a handful of raw nuts or seeds and a tablespoon of ground flax to make this more Gabriel Method friendly

I has been very exciting watching the transformation of our backyard.

Just yesterday we completed the deck.  Done, finished.  It only took a little under a year.  No biggie.

And the lawn is coming in really nicely too.  It’s still a little thin, but starting to fill in.  Another week or so and I think it will be ready for the kids to play on.  This is just so exciting for all of us.  A real back yard, Wow!

I was just marveling yesterday how a year ago I drew a picture of how I wanted it all to look and now it actually looks just like the picture I drew.  It’s a huge sense of accomplishment, especially since we have been so paralyzed by the overwhelming task for so many years.

It’s amazing what a small boy’s never ending energy can drive you to accomplish.  Go outside and play please!  Yea!!!

Here are the latest photos…

New Grass Coming InLast bit of deck completedAnd the Last Bits of FasciaIt's Just so pretty