Powered by Blogger.

Surviving January

1. Motrin

You know those Cymbalta commercials (Where does depression hurt? Everywhere. Who does depression hurt? Everyone.) - well we've been spoofing those commercials in our house for the last few months. Where does pregnancy hurt? Everywhere. Who does pregnancy hurt? Everyone. And who knew that parenthood would hurt everywhere and everyone too? I love every second of my new life, but I am SO thankful for Motrin. 

2. The Bachelor

I didn't want to watch this season, let alone be obsessed with it. But obsessed I am. So good. I thought Brad was going to be a total douche given his Bachelor past, but he seems like a genuinely nice guy. Super hot body too, but man his face - no so much. My pick for this season is Emily hands down. My top three are Emily, Ashley S. and Lisa. Everyone always asks me who's Lisa? Exactly, she's this season's sleeper. You just watch.

3. Vanilla Caramel Cream Coffee 

My Starbucks days are over (for now) and I've set up a coffee IV line in the meantime. This flavor is SO good. It makes me love my coffee maker all over again. We have one of those grind and brew coffee makers and even the grinding process smells good. Nom nom nom.

4. Bravado Essential Nursing Tanks

I've already mentioned these once before so I apologize for the repeat endorsement but I freaking love these tanks. I only have one nursing bra and I mostly use it for when I'm pumping (I have the Medela Freestyle and it hooks onto a nursing bra). Otherwise I wear one of these tanks underneath a sweater or a long sleeved shirt or as my pajama top. It's nice because I can nurse without having my belly be exposed and the whole nursing process is much more discreet with this top. And they are so darn comfortable. The bra top is super supportive and I think it fits *better* than the wireless nursing bras I've tried on. 

Eventually I will buy some actual bra bras, but I want to give my ribcage time to shrink again and allow my milk to level out so I'm not investing in more bras that will only fit for a short period of time. I have a whole drawer full of bras that I wore and outgrew over the last ten months. Ask my BFF about these bras, last time she came over I had one on the kitchen table (klassy) and she nearly croaked at the size of it! 

limited shop talk...

gosh i do like that, 'limited shop talk'. its a bit tricksy dicksy of me though, for it would appear upon reading my blog title, i am going to be talking about my shop, but in a very limited small way, which no doubt has you breathing a sigh of relief, for after all i have talked a lot of shop this week.
but no! ha ha! hee hee! you are quite right about the shop talking bit, but not the limited short bit, for limited is actually a shortened version of 'dottie angel limited'...
oh yes, clever and sneaky and may i say, a little brilliant!

however i do promise, pinky promise, hand on heart kind of promise, after today there will be no shop talk for a while. i will hang up my travelling sales cap and be wearing my book writing cap. which actually is not a cap but a headscarf. yes i will don a different headscarf every day next week, i may have to borrow one or two from used dog, and i will waft around the shed, in my headscarf and book writing attire, pencil behind my ear poised at the ready to record any snippet of dottie angel wisdom that strikes my little cogs.

and what will i use to scribble my wisdom upon? i hear you ask, well luckily for me i will have in my apron pocket a handy dandy notebook... not just any old handy dandy notebook, no sirree! a handy dandy notebook from dottie angel ltd no less :)

"oooh, Tif, you are a sneaky one with your sales pitch" i hear you cry
"oh yes indeed, this old girl still has it" say i, with a little smirk

they have been a long time in the making for sure, Debbie and myself took over 8 months to get to where we are now with our 'most happy' trio, but we are here now and most delighted with the outcome of our latest 'dottie angel ltd' adventure. of course i am not the one living with huge amounts of notebooks in my nest taking up the best part of one room, but Debbie assures me they look so peachy in their large quantity that she is 'a okay' with it. i have no idea if that will be the case several months down the road but let us not dwell on such things.
instead let us dwell on their peachiness...

small enough to fit in one's bag for handy dandy note taking, impromptu list making and any random doodling required on the go. printed and made in old blighty, from beautiful recycled paper and card stock, each notebook features a dottie angel picture, a dottie angel wording and some lovely vintage fabrics. the colors are soft and vintagey and we are particularly delighted with the inside covers.

something about opening up a handy dandy notebook and finding a little extra inside to make the day a little brighter.

i could waffle on and on about them, but my sales cap is slipping and all the NITTY GRITTY can be found here if you so care to read. and if you do so care to read, then please especially note these 'most happy' threesome will be mailed from ENGLAND just like the perfectly peachy tea towels are.
best of all, we are able to offer these wholesale, so if any passing lovely shop owner thinks these sweeties may indeed be most handy dandy upon their shelves, just contact me tif@dottieangel.com so we may talk shop :)

righty ho, i am off to sort out my head scarves and make the mountain of laundry look like a molehill before another week begins and just before i do,
may i just say little olive is beaming with your lovely comments from thursday. may i also just say by saturday little olive's cardboard playpen had to be confiscated due to another 'health and safety' regulation stating little doggies can only eat 'x' amount of cardboard before they come a cropper.

i noted upon me having to remove little olive from her playpen that used dog had sat quietly by during the whole proceedings. for she is a wise old dog of 11 years and has learnt from experience that cardboard eating is not a healthy past time, thus proving growing old has its good points.

she is thinking this week's word of the week will be 'handy dandy' cause she wishes to use it in the grocery store. "oooh no thank you! i have bought my own 'handy dandy' bag to use" ~ Tif

It's a Good Thing They Were in My Belly

...or I'd wonder if they were even mine

Babies and Boobies

Oh my god breastfeeding is HARD. The twins are 16 days old now and I've wanted to give up no less than a thousand times. I get so angry because I have a shelf full of books that refer to breastfeeding as a womanly act and pretend that it's the most natural, instinctive thing in the world.

What message is this sending? Breastfeeding is not natural and if you cannot breastfeed you are no less a woman. It is hard and it can be painful and there are all sorts of emotions and insecurities that come along with it. Having the onus of a whole feed for two children (or even one child) every 2-3 hours, all day, every day is a lot of pressure.

I am so tired of the mommy guilt I've been feeling over my issues with nursing. Some days I get so frustrated I just sit there and cry with my kids. Other days I just want to shake them. I mean really shake them. You're hungry, I have milk, WHAT IS THE PROBLEM? And no amount of reasoning (or positioning or chiding or coddling) will get these kids to latch. Or, even better, they latch and I'm in so.much.pain. but I wont unlatch them lest they refuse the nipple again.

Our kids tricked us in the hospital. They latched beautifully and nursed so well. I was even tandem feeding like a pro. I barely used the LC at the hospital and I went home feeling overconfident. The first week I was home I brought in a lactation consultant that confirmed what I already knew - I was doing a great job. Go me. And she showed me how to tandem feed AND free up my hands. I was on cloud nine.

Fast forward to day 10 when all hell broke loose. The twins got lazy with their latch - maybe because I had just introduced pacifiers - something that kept me up worrying. Did I jeopardize my breastfeeding efforts for a plastic nipple? But I needed the pacifiers, I mean NEEDED them. Which made me feel like a bad mommy. Anywho, their sloppy latches led to nipple issues. Both of my nipples bruised and one cracked/ripped pretty badly.

I used hydrogel pads, soft shells, cold compresses, warm compresses, lansinoh, saline solution. If I read about it on the internet, I used it. And when I put Ryan to the breast the next day I burst into tears from the pain.

By the beginning of this week I actually started to dread nursing them. There's that mom guilt again. Dread feeding your child? Way to be, mom of the year. I often wonder why I'm doing this to myself, I can give them a bottle and just move on with my day and skip all of this rotten stuff. And then I feel guilty for that too.

I've been working with two lactation consultants, one at our hospital and one in our home. It has been the key to me sticking with breastfeeding. I've had four hours of LC support this week and I think we have the problem fixed.

Today I have my sea legs back. I'm sure I'll lose them (and my mind) again before we get this whole nursing thing down. I have a few pearls of wisdom I've picked up in my short time as a mommy. I'll post those tomorrow, this has already gotten too long, and I need to get some rest before it's time to feed the monkeys again.

a slight case of envy...

little doggies and little children are one and the same...
give them
an oversized cardboard box,
some well loved toys,
several cozy blankets,
many oven mitts

having spent a few moments (okay, many minutes) watching little olive in her 'play pen' complete with EXIT carved out by Our #4 last night (as per health and safety standards for little doggies with short legs),

i must confess to several thoughts.
1. do dogs feel the weight of Mr Gloom?
2. i am slightly envious of little olive and her box.
3. have i completely lost my teeny tiny mind, standing here at 11am taking photos of a little doggie in a cardboard box, with her many blankets and mangled oven mitts, whilst feeling slightly envious.

fortunately she knows she is not alone with her barking mad ways ~ Tif


We are pleased to finally announce the launch of the new Papa Stronsay website: www.papastronsay.com

Replacing the old site, it has been quite a while in the making but worth the wait. It has all the basic information on Papa Stronsay as well as on the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer and vocation information.

The Papa Stronsay online shop is the biggest addition which sells all of our publications. It will grow in the future to include other things as well.

We have done testing on the site, but as is usual with these kinds of things there are bound to be some bugs and glitches. Please do contact us and let us know of anything you come across which doesn't seem to work properly.

Tummy Time

The twins are two weeks old now! Time sure does fly. The babies are way more alert and even spend some time awake after feedings. It's funny, when Reese was born she was so alert. Even three days postpartum, I was shocked at how much she had her eyes open. When her head crowned they turned her and Joe said to me she's looking right at me! Then she shut her eyes and kept them closed for over a week (or that's the way it seems). Ryan on the other hand had his eyes closed the entire first week of his life, and now he's just absorbing the world around him. Sometimes I swaddle him and put him in his pack n play and feel bad because he's so alert but mommy needs sleep! I often wonder what it is that's going on in his active little brain.

Both babies lost their umbilical cords this week, a gross but interesting thing. As a result I got to live out a dream of mine and bathe with my babes. It was awesome to have them splayed on my belly and hold them on the outside, the same way I held them when they were inside. I love mommyhood. I really do.

Now that the babies are getting past their super sleepy stage we've been practicing wake time activities. On their two week birthday, we tried out tummy time. They haven't quite mastered tummy time and Reese isn't really sure she likes even being on the ground. Practice makes perfect though!

Operation Twin Skin Week 2

Two weeks in I'm 32 pounds down (15 to go). I no longer fit in my maternity jeans, but my hips are too wide to fit into my pre-pregnancy jeans. I can get them up but they are nowhere near close to buttoning. I went shopping yesterday for a pair of jeans to bridge the gap between knocked up and messed up and was shocked to be a size 8. Prior to the twins I wore a size 0/2. Humbling to say the least.

I also tried on shirts, but my boobs are ginormous and my ribs are wider which makes sense, but is something I never considered. Anywho, I decided to hold off on tops for now since everything just looked weird. Maybe by the spring I'll either fit into my pre-pregnancy shirts or I'll look less rectangular in new shirts. Or maybe I'll just go topless!

{ click to enlarge either of the pictures }

Key for those of you who are still pregnant and reading - get a Gap card. GapMaternity is AMAZING and you accrue points towards future purchases. My fatgirlslim jeans yesterday only cost me $18 because I had a $40 store credit. So even though my ego was a bit bruised, my wallet was not.

{ Here's what the belly looks like all Cinched up }

p.s. I'm wearing the Bravado Essential Nursing Tank and I'm in love with it. I don't need a separate bra and it works as both jammies or under a cardigan or sweater if we're out running errands. Plus it allows me to nurse in public without baring my belly (although I also use a Bebe au Lait cover).

2 Weeks

and it all becomes clear...

yes indeedy dearest readers, as i was doing a bit of twiddling with Carlos my trusty camera and his twiddly bits, trying to get some etsy shots, it all became clear...

as i noted the other day in my 'terribly important things to note' post, i mentioned my inability to cook orange meals any longer, how this has thrown me off balance and i have been most fretful about the whole lacking of orange on the dinner table.
well of course silly me! whilst 'a twiddling' it dawned on me, i am completely and utterly influenced in the kitchen by what i am crafting. therefore for many many months i was all about orange, lovely big retro flowery orange prints, thus i fed my clan orange meal after orange meal...

but i have noted a change has been creeping in, a change that has me a little nervy.
for i said to myself many moons ago,
i would not,
could not,
do lilac again after living in a lilac nest during the latter part of the nineties, in old blighty.
it would appear lilac has other things to say about that, along with gingham.
(gasp, shock and a little horror)
for i did indeed right here on my shiny place exclaim i did not do gingham.
never say never Tif...

upon opening up to lilac and purple (purple!) i have allowed all sorts of others to follow suit. pink keeps talking to me, not granny knicker pink but 'full on' pink, infact it is becoming quite the distraction. in doing so, i have found a new true love, for he is perfectly suited to share his world with any color, he loves orange, yellow, pink, lilac and many more, doing a grand job at keeping them grounded and in their place.

so it would appear my new love is warm glossy grey and the need to paint various passing pieces of woody things in the shed with his presence, has caused me to stumble from the righteous and goodly path of home cooked orange meals. if i had thought serving up orange meals to my clan was hitting an all time low in culinary delights, then i do believe warm grey home cooked meals will put paid to that record.

still stocking shelves this week and on friday she has some news on dottie angel ltd... haha, doesn't that sound so grown up and proper, must be something to do with warm grey and his sophisticating ways ~ Tif

begone Mr Gloom, begone...

blimen' Mr Gloom's nose has been pressed up against my window for what seems forever and a day now. on Saturday, i thought to myself that's a little odd Tif, that there shadow in front of your studio window... then the reason for the feeling of gloom became clear. well it freaked me out a little cause Mr Lurgy was already inside visiting with Our #3 and i have to say i fear Mr Gloom way more than Mr Lurgy. indeed i would put him even above Mr Procrastinator.

for although Mr Procrastinator is a cad in more ways than one, whilst he visits it does not mean one is not doing things. sure one is pondering, pottling, pacing and achieving very little whilst doing so, but at least the little cogs are turning to some degree. but with Mr Gloom i cannot find a positive, he darkens where ever he roams and appears to take great joy in doing so.

on sunday i gave myself a talking to, i told myself i am armed with ammunition and i can and i will fight him.

"oh gosh Tif, what fighting talk" i hear you cry
"why yes dearest readers, all said whilst wearing my flannel pyjamas" say i

first off we have word of the week 'high hopes', quite obviously not a hint of gloominess about that. i said 'high hopes' quite loudly several times on sunday and i noted every time, his shadow recoiled a little.

then there is my forsaken little souls, collected over the past few years, some i found, and others found me through the kindness of folks. i gathered them all up from their various resting spots and popped them all together on one shelf in our bedroom.
even the angry looking russian doll seemed to relax her brow a little upon noting Mr Gloom was sweating and loosening his collar.

next i got to thinking about how my musings had gone to mush and my pennings had gone to pants, (please skip over that bit Janine, if you happen to read this ramble) i turned my attention away from the book so i may start afresh in a day or so, therefore giving me a grand opportunity to stock the shelves of my little shop. hurrah! hooray! i thought, for before, during and after christmas i spent any spare moment wisely crafting wares to sell. for some time now a lovely pile of handcrafted goodness has waited patiently in the corner of my studio, for their moment to shine. however day after day and week after week Mr Gloom has not played fair, thus not only my pennings are pants but also my photos.

yesterday continuing on from sunday, i refused to be weighed down by gloominess and set about with Carlos my trusty camera to see if we could rise above the darkness that envelopes the shed. i am delighted to report we have done a fair job between us. i would not shout it from the roof tops, nor enter the photos in any competition that maybe passing. however considering the circumstances with which they were taken, i think Carlos did a pretty peachy job.

i shall be popping my little wares upon the shelves and in the window of my shop over the next few days and i have noted, after just adding my 'itty bitty' heart tags, it would appear Mr Gloom has yet to find my shop window and press his blimen' nose up against it, so indeed perhaps filling my shop up will be just the tonic for shifting the weight of gloominess within the shed

she will show you more of what she has been crafting tomorrow ~ Tif

O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us

25 January

Robbie Burn's Night

O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as others see us
It wad frae monie a blunder free us
An' foolish notion
What airs in dress an' gait wad lea'e us
An' ev'n Devotion


Oh, that God would give us the very smallest of gifts
To be able to see ourselves as others see us
It would save us from many mistakes
and foolish thoughts
We would change the way we look and gesture
and to how and what we apply our time and attention.

These lines are from Robbie Burn's poem
To a Louse
where he records the shame of a lady in church
who is unaware that a large louse
is crawling around on her new hat, a Lunardi
-the height of the fashion in 1785.

The poet chastises the louse for not realising how important his host is,
and then reflects that, to a louse, we are all equal prey,
and that we would be disabused of our pretensions
if we were to see ourselves through each others' eyes.

Bishop John Geddes

One of Burns’ most enthusiastic admirers was Dr John Geddes,
Catholic bishop and Vicar Apostolic for the Lowlands.
He was the elder brother of the biblical critic and priest Alexander Geddes,
also known to Burns.
John and Alexander Geddes knew something of the harsh, rural life that Burns had lived:
the two brothers had been junior seminarians at Scalan,
a tiny (illegal) house of formation near Glenlivet,
Diocese of Aberdeen,
for lads destined for the priesthood.
They wore the kilt, lived on salmon and porridge,
and washed in an icy stream each morning,
in a valley surrounded by moutains where,
according to Alexander,
the sun never shone.
More about Robbie Burns and Bishop Geddes here.

To a Louse

Ha! Whare ye gaun, ye crowlin ferlie?
Ha! Where are you going, you crawling wonder?
Your impudence protects you sairly,
Your impudence protects you sorely,
I canna say but ye strut rarely
I can not say but you swagger rarely
Owre gauze and lace,
Over gauze and lace,
Tho' faith! I fear ye dine but sparely
Though faith! I fear you dine but sparingly
On sic a place.
On such a place.

Ye ugly, creepin, blastit wonner,
You ugly, creeping, blasted wonder,
Detested, shunn'd by saunt an' sinner,
Detested, shunned by saint and sinner,
How daur ye set your fit upon her --
How dare you set your foot upon her -
Sae fine a lady!
Such fine a lady!
Gae somewhere else and seek your dinner
Go somewhere else and seek your dinner
On some poor body.
On some poor body.

Swith! in some beggar's hauffet squattle:
Off! in some beggar's temples squat:
There you may creep, and sprawl, and sprattle
There you may creep, and sprawl, and scramble,
Wi' ither kindred, jumping cattle,
With other kindred, jumping cattle,
In shoals and nations;
In shoals and nations;
Whare horn nor bane ne'er daur unsettle
Where horn nor bone never dare unsettle
Your thick plantations.
Your thick plantations.

Now haud you there! ye're out o' sight,
Now hold you there! you are out of sight,
Below the fatt'rils, snug an' tight;
Below the falderals, snug and tight;
Na, faith ye yet! ye'll no be right,
No, faith you yet! you will not be right,
Till ye've got on it ---
Until you have got on it ---
The vera tapmost, tow'ring height
The very topmost, towering height
O' miss's bonnet.
Of miss's bonnet.

My sooth! right bauld ye set your nose out
My sooth! right bold you set your nose out,
As plump an' grey as onie grozet:
As plump and gray as any gooseberry:
O for some rank, mercurial rozet,
O for some rank, mercurial resin,
Or fell, red smeddum,
Or deadly, red powder,
I'd gie ye sic a hearty dose o't,
I would give you such a hearty dose of it,
Wad dress your droddum!
Would dress your breech!

I wad na been surpris'd to spy
I would not have been surprised to spy
You on an auld wife's flainen toy:
You on an old wife's flannel cap:
Or aiblins some bit duddie boy,
Or maybe some small ragged boy,
On's wyliecoat;
On his undervest;
But Miss's fine Lunardi! fye!
But Miss's fine balloon bonnet! fye!
How daur ye do't.
How dare you do it.

O Jenny, dinna toss your head,
O Jenny do not toss your head,
An' set your beauties a' abread!
And set your beauties all abroad!
You little ken what cursed speed
You little know what cursed speed
The blastie's makin!
The blastie's making!
Thae winks an' finger-ends, I dread,
Those winks and finger-ends, I dread,
Are notice takin'!
Are notice taking!

O wad some Power the giftie gie us
O would some Power the gift to give us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
To see ourselves as others see us!
It wad frae monie a blunder free us,
It would from many a blunder free us,
An' foolish notion:
And foolish notion:
What airs in dress an' gait wad lea'e us,
What airs in dress and gait would leave us,
An' ev'n devotion!
And even devotion!

Operation Twin Skin

So one of the things we all face as multiples moms is the dreaded postpartum body. I made it all the way to 32 weeks before my skin broke, and when it did my stretch marks popped up like gremlins fed after midnight. Horrific. Add to this PUPPPS and I was sure my body was completely done for.

In total I gained 47 pounds by the time I delivered the twins at 38 weeks, 2 days. By one week postpartum I had already lost 26 pounds. I've been wearing a belly binder called the Cinch and it's done wonders for my back support and has helped keep my insides feeling like insides instead of all overs. Breastfeeding has also helped with the weight loss. I'm a lot happier with my postpartum body than I thought I could/would be.

My stretch marks were always white (until they were filled with PUPPPS rashes), and they are pretty bad, but maybe I can recover? I'm hoping if I can get my belly close to flat that laser surgery can fix the damaged skin. Joe and I aren't done having babies - we still have two frosties to go back for - and I'm too big of a bush to get a tummy tuck once our path to parenthood is over.

Since I was always curious what people looked like postpartum, I've decided to share the wealth by documenting my progress here for all to see. I plan on taking pictures on the babies' weekly birthday; these pictures will replace my Wordless Wednesday posts for a while. Hopefully they'll leave me wordless in a good way and not because I'm crouched down rocking myself gently in my closet. :)


Popular Posts

Blog Archive