Friday, December 14, 2012

7 Quick Takes, Vol. 25: Christmas Lights and Diapers

Thank you, Jen, for hosting, and congratulations on the premiere of Minor Revisions! I had to work tonight, but I'm excited to check it out soon!

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First things first - we have a Christmas tree!
We got our tree over the weekend, but it took until Tuesday to get it decorated. We switched to LED lights this year, and I am really impressed so far! The colors are less harsh than when the lights first came out, and overall I like the look. There's something sweetly nostalgic about our old incandescent lights, but the energy savings make such a big difference I'm willing to switch. The bubble lights are just traditional bubble lights, not LED, but there are only a few of them. Bubble lights are so fun! It should be noted that we still have at least 40 ornaments to squeeze on the tree, most of which are snowflakes of some sort. I love snowflake ornaments. Maybe that's my version of a white Christmas - except most of mine are silver. Oh well.
Emily and Erin really seem to like the tree, although to see their reaction I have to compete with the tree. This never really goes well, because they end up looking at Mommy instead of the tree (and I have no problem with that!). But if I turn the lights on, they seem interested in the colors and the twinkling lights. Being a parent adds a whole new dimension to Christmas - one I'm really excited about. Everything seems so much more exciting as you imagine seeing it for the first time.
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Speaking of lights, we have lights on the house too! I don't have a good picture of those, but we ended up with "warm white" (read: traditional white, not bluish-LED glare) LED lights along the gutter in the front, and larger, twinkling colored LED ceramic lights around the living room window. Dan valiantly conquered his dislike of ladders (and put up with my tutelage - I'm sure that was ten times worse than the ladder!) to hang the lights, and they look awesome. I love the feeling of helping to bring the Christmas spirit to our neighborhood, and I can't wait to go out with the girls on a Christmas light drive (or maybe a walk!) to see everyone else's!
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We had an epic errand-running session this week. On Monday, I decided to take Emily and Erin out to get some things done. I packed the diaper bag full of diapers, wipes, a change of clothes for each girl, and plenty of entertaining toys. All three of us had a snack, and we headed out. We went to the dry cleaners, the bagel shop, Target, and the grocery store, with frequent pauses for feeding and diaper changes. It went much better than I expected, although the grocery store ended with a major meltdown. I could pretty much chalk it up to both girls being sick of confinement, so it was my fault for dawdling (and not having a list!). We were gone for about six hours, and we ran four errands. Well, three errands. The bagel shop was just a treat. The confidence I gained from the expedition was very valuable - there are always errands I end up putting off because I can't go on my own, but I guess there really isn't a good reason for that.
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I wrote a post this week about planning to fail. Lest it sound like I loathe planning, let me tell you that I don't. I really don't. I kind of think that people who have it all planned out might be (read: absolutely are) exaggerating a little. Or maybe they don't have kids. In which case, the planning is a totally different story. It's kind of funny how these things work, though, because after I wrote the post, I decided to make chicken in the crockpot. The chicken was too big, or the crockpot too small. One of those things. So I decided to use the foil roasting pan I picked up at the dollar store. Except it turned out to be a cake pan. But I had been cooking the chicken in the crockpot for about half an hour, so I decided to just use it. I emptied the crockpot into the pan and turned over cooking duties to the oven. All went well - I even used the remote thermometer! - until I went to take the pan out of the oven. It buckled under the weight of the chicken, and chicken drippings, onions, carrots, and celery went everywhere, all over the floor and all over the pots and pans in the bottom of the stove. Removing the drawer just spread the mess further - I ended up mopping most of the house! Oh, and did I mention we somehow pried the drain stopper out of the bathtub drain during the final cleanup of the pots and pans drawer? Yeah. If you want to deep clean your house, cook a chicken in a foil cake pan.
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Emily has taken to communicating with her mouth closed. It's sort of like a kazoo technique, if you remember those (wax paper over a toilet paper tube) and it sounds pretty much the same. She only seems to express frustration this way, but it's hard to tell for sure. I find it entertaining. So does her sister. So she does it more and more, trying to get Erin's attention. It really is hysterically funny to watch! Erin has decided she really likes to be carried. She's spent a lot of time riding around on my right hip, checking out what Mommy does during the day. I can't say I really mind (though my right arm is getting much stronger than my left!) but I also think it would be good for her to play with her sister without me there every minute. The arrangement where they played on their activity mat in the pack and play worked fine up until - last week, was it? It's hard to say. I pretty much do what they want to do, as long as they're safe and we're not talking about bedtime. We'll see how long that lasts, but whatever works, right?
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We'll be making the switch to cloth diapering part of the time, as soon as our new diapers arrive! I'm pretty stoked about this. It'd been my plan to switch once the girls got a little bigger, and now that they're in size 3 diapers and will be until they are around 28 lbs, I think we'll be able to do it. Even half of the time would cut down soooooo much on the number of diapers we go through! I'm working on a post about the change, along with some other changes in the works right now, and I will definitely review the diapers once they get here and we get a chance to try them out. I'm so excited - is that weird?
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I'll leave you this week with this hilarious link - put your beverage of choice off to the side while you read these, because coffee-spewed computer screens are SO 2011. (Or SO 2012. If it's almost 2013, is it not cool to be so 2012 anymore? I don't think I understand.) Feel free to explain if you do understand - but go read this first! Did you notice the new blog graphics? I'd love to hear what you think - I made them myself, and I think it turned out pretty well. I love the progression of our life together, and I always love pictures of my babies!
I hope you all have a great weekend!
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


  1. A thought on the cloth diapers- I have some rumparooz with microfiber inserts. I used them for a while when Oscar was tiny and loved them but had to stop using them because he got crazy bad diaper rash (and I tried all kinds of things to fix it like using different laundry detergent). It went away pretty much overnight (literally) when i out disposables on him.
    I'm using them again (ran out of disposables, didn't want to drive to the store...) with no problems. The only difference is that I'm using old school cotton diapers as inserts instead of the microfiber. I don't know how that would help but it has. ...hopefully I will only be diapering one child soon, though. two kids make lot of diapers. :P

    1. That's interesting that the cloth diapers gave him diaper rash! I have heard that the microfiber can do that. I love cleaning with microfiber cloths, but I have to wear gloves when I do it because they are kind of hard on my hands. I ordered both and figured we'll try them and see what works! They are supposed to arrive today....I am still super excited!

  2. Love the header!

    I'm super impressed with your trip out with the girls. I'm intimidated thinking about going anywhere with ONE baby ;).

    1. Haha, Stacy, so was I! I know it's cliché, but I'll just say you do what you have to do. It does get easier when they can be entertained with toys. When they were smaller, we just hoped they would sleep, but now we can let them nap at home and they either doze or play when we're out.

      Thanks! I really like it too. It's fun to see the progression!

  3. I love your new graphic! And yayy for Christmas lights and a tree! And that link was hilarious!

    1. Thanks! I am loving the Christmas tree with the snow falling in the background right now. So fun! The link made me excited and scared simultaneously, haha.

  4. Hooray for cloth diapering! I love it, but I don't have twins! Now I'm curious to see what kind you're getting. Also, I love the new header.

    1. Thank you! I figure I can save twice as much money, y'know? I am curious too - can't wait for the UPS guy to show! I do a lot of online shopping. The poor driver is probably sick of our house. One of the perks of being done with apartment life!

  5. Hi! I am so glad that I found your blog! I am your newest follower and was kinda maybe sorta hopin' that you would hop on by and follow back!


    1. Hi Sarah! I just headed over to follow your blog and saw you're in Oregon too! What a small world. Also, you have a great name (and spelled right too!) I loved those quotes you posted - can't wait to read more!