Posted: April 29th, 2014 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Birth, C-Section | Tags: Birth, Family, Kids, Mom stuff, Silas | 1 Comment »
(Let’s pretend I didn’t just completely neglect this space for the better part of the past year and jump right into the here and now, shall we?)
This kid joined our family:
7 pounds, 11 ounces
At first he looked like this:
All nice and pink*, and
perfectly happy not impressed to be on the outside.
I got to keep him with me in the OR:
Is it bad that the only thing I could think of when I finally got to hold him was that his crying was probably distracting the doctors from doing their jobs and they were probably going to kick him out if he didn’t quiet down? Yeah, those were my loving thoughts in the moments after he was born.
Also: he looks like a blonde Wyatt!
I finally felt like a human being:
Those really crappy months of hyperemesis with the constant nausea, and the vomiting, and the IV poles, and the drugs?
Let’s cuddle cute fat baby!
And order dinner.**
And this is you now:
Well, three weeks ago this was you. You have fatter cheeks now.
And this is what a house with 4 boys looks like:
We are so happy you joined us.
*And bloated from the copious amounts of fluids they pumped into me to keep my blood pressure from tanking during my c-section.
**I will have one of everything and I will inhale it.
Posted: June 21st, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Reviews and Giveaways | Tags: Blogging, Buena Vida Designs, Family, Family Manifesto, Giveaway, House Rules, La buena Vida, Letters, Stuff You Need, Subway Art, Urban Cabin, Word Art | 7 Comments »
I have been seeing a lot of people posting their family rules on their blogs lately and I’ve kind of been filing it away in my brain as something I need to get down on paper. The other day I came across a blog that was doing a giveaway of personalized Family Manifestos and it again caught my eye because really, talk about simple personal art that has meaning. For a family who’s kids are over the moon for letters, it seems natural to seek out artwork that features letters and words. I bookmarked the blog because I figured I’d never win but they were cute and totally affordable ($5) so I would eventually get around to getting my own…one way or another.
Well, I WON!
Those words up there? All mine. The rules of the house so to speak. Some of them are said out loud often (there is no crying in baseball). Some of them are simply understood (pray when you feel like it). Some of them are things we are trying to instill in our boys even though they are very young (be nice to books). I *really* had to keep myself from adding “Don’t Bite!” to my list of what I wanted on there.
You can get a Family Manifesto of your own to print by checking out Buena Vida Designs on Etsy. Meredith is super great to work with and it really couldn’t be easier.
Disclosure: I won this piece of artwork from a giveaway hosted by La Buena Vida. I’m sharing my honest opinion because it totally made my day!
Posted: June 9th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Breastfeeding | Tags: #Judahthetank, Blog Hop, Blogging, Breastfeeding, Family, Feelings, Lincoln, Lincolnton and Wy, Nursing in Public, Pumping, Wyatt | 8 Comments »
This post is part of the Breastfeeding Blog hop, hosted each Thursday and Friday by Life with Levi and co-hosted by myself and Diary of a Devil Dog Wife. The topic is new every week, join us!
During both of my pregnancies I knew that I would be going back to work at some point. For better or worse, that was the plan. Because of this I started pumping pretty much from day one. Maybe day two. I was always feed, pump, supplement or feed, pump, freeze. Always the pumping.
Of course I pumped at work as well. I was lucky in the fact that I had my own office where I could hole up and pump three times a night, but for the most part it wasn’t enough. Because of certain rules my company had in place, I was only afforded two 15-minute breaks and one 30-minute break. It would have been much better for my if I had been able to do three 20-minutes breaks, but it wasn’t an option. 15 minutes to set up, pump through 2 let-downs and clean-up and be back to work? It’s almost impossible. but, I suppose as long as I was given the option and the space to do it they don’t have to go out of their way to make it work for me.
Because of supply issues I was never able to build up any sort of stash for Judah. There were many mornings (I worked overnight) that my husband would frantically call and want to know if I could get home early because the milk was gone and Judah was going crazy. Of course I was a good little breastfeeding Mama and I didn’t dare let him have formula. It was so much better to torture him by not letting him eat! That’s sarcasm, in case you didn’t catch it. Eventually I did have to get formula because I couldn’t keep leaving work early and I was already pumping around the clock and nursing and it was never ever enough. He was like a bottomless pit.
In my experience, I really don’t know how you can sustain both breastfeeding and pumping while working. I could see exclusively pumping, because you aren’t feeding the baby and then trying to build up a stash with what is left, one or two ounces at a time. Judah could put down 8 ounces in a sitting at 3 months old. I could only pump between 2-6 ounces in a session. It just never equaled out.
Eventually I ended up staying home and although it wasn’t the only reason or even the main reason, a big reason we came to the decision was to salvage what was left of breastfeeding with Judah. I had to quit my job to make it work. In the months that followed I spent the better part of my day parked on the couch with Judah nursing and me tweeting on my Blackberry. A lot of things didn’t get done, but the most important thing was nursing Judah.
And that was enough for me.
Posted: June 5th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Out and About | Tags: cars, Day to Day, Family, Feelings, Grand Caravan, minivan, Mom card, Mom stuff, Montana, road trip, Saturn Vue, Stuff You Need, Virginia | 12 Comments »
In 2004 we bought a car. The second car we’d ever purchased together. The first we purchased on our terms, when we weren’t in desperate need of a car because ours had died. We saw a sale, we had a trade-in, we went and got ourselves a new car.
It was a Saturn Vue.
We loved that car.
It took us back and forth to Minnesota when we were moving from Missouri.
It took us east to Virginia, both before and after we had kids. The worst leg of a road trip ever was spent in it when we were stopped in traffic for an hour because of an accident heading into Louisville with no more water, no more bottles and two screaming 11 month olds who wanted to eat. The first thing we did when we found an exit was stop to get water and then stop to get beer for when we got to the hotel. It was the longest 60 minutes of my life.
We drove west to Montana with three kids and although the seating was a bit more cramped than it was when it was just the two of us, we still had room to add a few more things on our trip home.
It was the family car.
But, it died. Unexpectedly. And with gusto.
It didn’t just die, it died hard. And all at once.
So, we had to bite the bullet. We had to get another car. We had to look at…minivans.
Now, I am not necessarily a minivan person. I liked the Vue. It was compact but it fit everyone and all of our stuff, even if it was tight.
But, the siren song of the minivan is hard to deny.
More space! Smoother ride! A place for all of your kids and their friends! And did we mention SPACE?!
So we went looking.
We did some research and were priced out of our top 2 choices pretty quickly (Toyota Sienna and Honda Odyssey) our third choice was the Chrysler Town and Country and our 4th choice was the Dodge Grand Caravan.
We found a few we wanted to look at, nailed down the dealerships we were going to, pulled our Carfax reports and went on our way.
The one we really wanted, the one that looked so perfect on paper ended up being a dud. It only had seating for 6, all captains seats and there is no way our stroller would have fit in the back. Boo. I’m not sure how this is possible, it’s a minivan…where is all the space?
We looked at a few more and then finally found one we can live with. It has a few more miles than we originally wanted, but not too many more. It has the 3rd row bench seat and 4 captains chairs. It’s got the Stow & Go seating which is pretty cool. It’s got the doors that open automatically which wasn’t on my list but I guess is a plus. And, it was lower than our price range, so huge plus.
It has more space than the T&C, but seriously….unless I drop the seats into the floor I’m not seeing the extra cargo room (and if you do that you lose that under seat space, so it’s kind of a draw). Yes, it has more space in the passenger area. It will be a lot easier to ride in on long trips for sure. I’ll give it that. But, with three kids in carseats, I kind of have to have all my seats up. So where is all of this extra space?
Do I like the minivan we got? Yes. I think it will end up being a great car for us. I’m not knocking this purchase at all. I think it was necessary and I think we made some good decisions.
But, I’m feeling really underwhelmed.
I thought I was going to have this big a-ha moment of
“OMG I can’t believe we’ve lived without this for so long!”
And I’m not.
Certainly I’m not the only one who feels this way.
Are they going to come take my Mom card now?
Posted: May 30th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Living in the City | Tags: City Living, Day to Day, Family, Moving | 1 Comment »
Friday I walked out of our duplex for the last time. Ever.
It was so weird and uneventful. Well I guess the combined 48 hours* of cleaning we put into it before we finally walked out wasn’t exactly uneventful, but you get the picture.
Now, we are here. On the other side of town, with a somewhat new feeling life and new open doors.
More places to escape to, namely the backyard which is currently under construction.
I think it’s going to be good.
*Seriously. 48 hours. If we don’t get at least part of that deposit back after 6 years I might just go through the roof. Because #1- we were there for 6 years. #2- FORTY EIGHT hours of cleaning! And #3- 6 years! Nothing had been updated in at least 10 years (the previous renters had been there for 4 years). I seriously question the fact that I am being asked to wash 10 year old mini-blinds (I’m guessing they were more in the 15-20 years old range) in the bathtub or incur a charge for $22 per blind. That, is bullshit.
Posted: May 20th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Breastfeeding | Tags: #Judahthetank, Blogging, Breastfeeding, Day to Day, Family, Feelings, Friday Favorites, Kids, Nursing in Public, Weaning | 62 Comments »
Sponsored by Tomoson.com
I have a love-hate relationship with nursing covers. I love them, because I’m the kind of girl who likes to cover up my business. I hate them, because Judah doesn’t like them and spends the entire nursing session ripping it off, thus drawing MORE attention to me and him and OH LOOK! Boobs!
Which is not what I’m going for.
So, I ditched my covers. And I had some cute ones!
I was cruising along pretty well just pulling my shirt down just so, keeping my breast covered and it was working great.
Then I heard about the Baby Bond.
A nursing cover that covers YOU, not the baby.
Hmmm…sounds pretty good. I watched some videos on their website and did a little sleuthing around and I was hooked. This was the answer! I could cover up AND keep Judah free to
So when given the opportunity to review a Baby Bond of my very own, I was on board.
I chose the Baby Bond Couture Nursing Sash and Belly Band.
via Baby Bond
The Couture is different from the Original and the Flexin that it is versatile (you can use it to cover you from the top or the bottom. It is also adjustable, fitting your body as it changes postpartum.
via Baby Bond
I wanted to try this one because as I discussed in a previous post, I have no real nursing wardrobe. I’m in my nursing tanks pretty much all the time. The Baby Bond Couture gives me another option- I can put it on under any shirt and still have my tummy and back covered while I nurse, my shirt will keep me covered up top. It’s perfect!
I actually had much better luck with it used in this way than if I used it to cover my top, Judah was all flailing hands and feet trying to get it off even though it wasn’t covering him at all. I ended up quite exposed when using it this way.
Still, I think it’s a great product. Lightweight, nice neutral colors, it even rolls up into itself for easy storage.
I would recommend this nursing cover to anyone.
Baby Bond has three different styles to choose from, all 100% cotton knit and they retail for around $35. Baby Bond nursing covers are Made in the USA.
Baby Bond is offering one of my readers the opportunity to get their hands on a Free Baby Bond Nursing Cover of their own!
– Visit Baby Bond and tell me which Baby Bond nursing cover you would choose if you are the winner
– Follow me on GFC
– Follow me on Twitter
– Follow Baby Bond on Twitter
– “Like” The Slacker Momon Facebook
– Tweet this: Hey! @TheSlackrMom is giving away a FREE @BabyBond Nursing Cover! http://wp.me/p14Qs6-4D #breastfeeding (pls RT)
Please include a seperate comment for each entry so they can all be counted.
In addition to this giveaway, Baby Bond is giving ALL of my readers 25% off their purchase at www.babybondnursing.com. Just enter the coupon code “SLACKER” when checking out!
This giveaway will end June 3rd at 10pm, the winner will be drawn by Random.org. I will contact the winner by email, if I do not get a response within 48 hours a new winner will be drawn. Open to residents worldwide.
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com created by WebBizIdeas.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Tomoson Product review & giveaway Disclosure.
Posted: May 13th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Reviews and Giveaways | Tags: #Judahthetank, Blogging, Day to Day, Family, Friday Favorites, Kids, Kids Clothes, Lincoln, Lincolnton and Wy, Mom stuff, Stuff You Need, Tea Collection, Wyatt | 114 Comments »
I have a confession to make.
I like to dress my boys in comfy clothes every day. Comfy as in, if they could get away with head to toe knit from birth to age 5, I think I’d be a happy Mom. Even better if we could get away with PJ’s 24 hours a day! I know. It’s so unacceptable. There is just something about putting those skinny little limbs into stiff jeans and miniature copies of outfits you’d find on an adult. Yes, the effect is adorable, but I just think they must on some level be…uncomfortable.
Because of this, I have a lot of your run of the mill brands hanging out in our drawers…Carters, Target, Gymboree and Gap…you get the picture. In my 2+ years of mothering boys I have come across a few brands that fit my comfort requirements and ratchet up the style a bit.
Enter Tea Collection.
Tea Collection is a San Francisco based clothing company that’s designs are distinctly inspired by their travels around the globe. They have style in spades and cottons to drool over. My first introduction to Tea came with an end of season layette sale and some undeniably cute sleepersthat I considered the boys “good” pajamas (mostly because of their modern styling and colors). They were still itty bitty mind you, modern colors automatically kicked the 24-hour pajama-fest up a notch!
Each season the collections change based on Tea’s latest journy. Their current destination is Catalonia, Spain. I was recently given the opportunity to review this newest collection.
My Little Citizens of the World
I am so impressed with the boys clothes. The colors and patterns were spot on and the fabrics as comfy as ever.
I suppose now I just need to find a little girl to spoil….who do I know that fits that bill?
Tea Collection is available on their website
or if you are local to Minneapolis, you can find Tea Collection at
one of the Midwest Destination Stores
310 East Hennepin Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55414
Tea Collection is going to offer one of my lovely readers the opportunity to get their hands on a $50 Tea Collection giftcard!
– Visit Tea Collection and tell me what you would spend your $50 on if you are the winner
– Follow me on GFC
– Follow me on Twitter
– Follow Tea Collection on Twitter
– “Like” Tea Collectionon Facebook
– “Like” The Slacker Momon Facebook
– Tweet this: Hey! @TheSlackrMom is having a giveaway! $50 to Tea Collection ends May 27th! http://wp.me/p14Qs6-4E (Pls RT)
This giveaway will end May 27th at 10pm, the winner will be drawn by Random.org. I will contact the winner by email, if I do not get a response within 48 hours a new winner will be drawn. Open to US residents only.
Disclosure: I was provided clothing from Tea Collection to write this review, some of which is pictured here. All opinions are my own.
Posted: May 12th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Autism | Tags: Autism, Autism Awareness Month, Birth to Three, Day to Day, EI, Family, Feelings, FTW, Goals, Kids, Lincoln, Lincolnton and Wy, Wyatt | 5 Comments »
I kind of feel like we have been doing this for years, when in reality it’s only been a few short months.
In the past 2 weeks, it’s like we have a totally different kid.
Wyatt is engaged more than not.
He’s calling things by their names (even if it’s only the first syllabel of the word).
He’s “singing” the alphabet.
It’s just so awesome to see.
Yes, we still have a long way to go. Yes, he still has autism- that isn’t going away.
It’s just *so* encouraging to see such great progress. You get so mired in all the details of your day it’s like a slap in the face to say “This is what we are working towards and it’s happening!”
Lincoln is coming out of his shell a bit too. Today when his teacher and the speech therapist came for a home visit he met them at the door with a hug and spent a good part of the visit hanging off the speech therapist’s back (he’s really into piggy-back rides) and giggling. He’s making progress too, communicating in his own way. We are learning how to meet him at his level, which is probably the biggest obstacle! He knows just how to get what he wants, we just have to read his cues a bit better.
Posted: May 10th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Parenting | Tags: #Judahthetank, Day to Day, Family, Feelings, Firsts, SAHM | 6 Comments »
He is 9 months old and he:
– is as big as Lincoln was at 12 months
– is as big as Wyatt was at 15 months
– is walking, on his own, with no encouragement about 25% of the time
– likes to play fetch with Stanley
– eats more “real” food than the boys on a regular basis
– really needs to get in for his 9 month appointment so this awesomeness can be documented for realz
– might be weaning, but I can’t be sure…
– has no inhibitions whatsoever- this one likes to explore!
Where did my baby go?
Posted: May 8th, 2011 | Author: Erin Clotfelter | Filed under: Parenting | Tags: #Judahthetank, Family, Family Photos, Lincoln, Lincolnton and Wy, Mom stuff, Wyatt | 5 Comments »
But so is my Heart.
Happy Mother’s Day.
To ALL of the Mother’s in my life.