Tuesday, June 23, 2015

DIY Record Bowl

Hey Friends!

So this past weekend was Father's Day.  We had a fun weekend with our in-laws and enjoyed each other's company.

My husband, Grant, received a new leaf blower and weed eater from his parents for Father's Day so you can imagine his excitement to finally have one where the battery wouldn't die so quickly.

The boys and I decided to make Daddy a gift this year instead of purchasing one.  We made him a record bowl.  He already has two of them that he purchased, oh probably about 4 years ago and he really loves them.  They're a great catch all for all of his things.

Our latest garage sale we had some left over vinyls that my mother had put in hoping to sell.  So I grabbed one of the records that had a bunch of songs on it that my 23 year old husband loves.  He always is saying that he was born in the wrong decade because his favorite music is from the 50s.

The process was SO simple.

What you'll need:
  • Record of your choosing
  • Oven safe bowl
  • Cookie sheet, optional

First, set your oven to 350 degrees

Next, choose a record that you don't mind repurposing.  


Place the bowl upside down onto the cookie sheet.  I used a cookie sheet to help keep the record stable.  Make sure that you have the record centered onto the bowl.  This way the vinyl will melt and form into a bowl shape.  Almost instantly the record will begin to wilt.  Bake for 3-5 minutes.


See...

Bake for 3-5 minutes.

When you remove the record it surprisingly isn't too hot.  I picked it up and it was flimsy.  So I turned the bowl over and pushed the record into the bowl to help it keep it bowl shape.  Beginning forming and pinching the record to your liking.

 Once I was sure it was going to hold its bowl shape, and while it was still flexible, I removed it from the bowl and pinched and formed it until it wouldn't move any more.

VOILA! The finished product! 

It starts to cool pretty quickly, so you need to work kind of quick.  The whole process took me, oh maybe, 7-8 minutes.  I only baked the record for about 3-4 and spent the rest of the time molding.  

So there you have it! A simple DIY that is under 10 minutes! WOW!   I think I'm going to have to make some more of these for my son's second birthday in a few months since it will fit the theme.  

Until next time! 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Philly Stuffed Peppers

Hey Y'all!

The other night I made some amazing Philly Stuffed Peppers!  They were delicious and so easy!!! ENJOY!

What you'll need:

2 Green Bell Peppers, Hollowed out and seeded
8 pieces Deli sliced roast beef,  You can buy the sandwiched, pre-sliced meat like I did.
1/2 a yellow onion
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
4-6 pieces provolone cheese
Mushrooms, optional
Your favorite steak seasoning


1.  Coat the bottom of your skillet with some EVOO.  Saute your onions, garlic, and mushrooms until they are tender and browned.  Added in your sliced roast beef and favorite steak seasoning.  Cook and stir until warmed through.
2.  Hollow out your peppers and place a piece of provolone cheese inside the pepper.
3. Stuff the peppers with your meat and veggie mix.

4. Top with 1-2 more slices of provolone cheese.

5.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes, or until peppers are cooked through.

Voila!!!

Monday, May 4, 2015

What to Expect When You Start Breastfeeding. The Ugly Truth

I MADE IT!

I've made it to my first goal of breastfeeding.  Avery is three months old today and has been receiving breast milk for three months.  I feel so accomplished.

Breastfeeding Kingston almost two years ago didn't go as smoothly as it has for Avery.  A lot of that is because of confidence.  I didn't produce a lot of milk with Kingston and I knew that.  Even breastfeeding, then pumping after he nursed, or pumping in the place of nursing, I didn't make hardly anything and I gave up before three months.  So this time around I'm so proud and excited to say that I've made my first goal.

So accomplishing my first goal led me to write this post about breastfeeding.  For those first time breastfeeding mothers out there, here's a few things that you can expect when you start breastfeeding. The ugly truth.

It's not instant

When you first meet your baby after the doctor places him/her on your chest don't expect the baby to just latch right away.  If your sweet bundle of joy latches right away, GREAT! Keep it up.  Try not to get frustrated when he or she doesn't latch right away.  Remember, this is new to them and to you.  They have to learn what they are doing, but they'll have plenty of opportunities to learn.  Some babies will do what is called the breast crawl.  In the Golden Hour, which is encouraged at every hospital, babies often will find their way to the breast on their own instead of you having to place the breast in front of the babe.

Painful Initial Latch

When it comes to that first initial latch, you may experience some pain.  This should be the only time that breastfeeding is painful.  Nipples are sensitive so they need time to adjust to a tiny human sucking on them about 12 times a day.  This pain should go away after your baby has gotten a few suckles in.  After your body is used to it, you won't even notice it or experience any pain.

As painful as it can be, try not to let it change your mind on breastfeeding.

Uterine Contractions

And just when you thought that you were finished with contractions, you still experience them even after you deliver.  Again, these can be painful, but no fear, these only last a few days.

As your baby nurses, Oxytocin is released (the hormone that is released when you experience a hug or a kiss)  which causes the uterus to contract.   These contractions work to shrink your uterus back to its normal size, pre-pregnancy.

These contractions can cause painful cramps, but again the pain disperses quickly and will end after a few days.  Remember, your body is adapting to its new job.

Something my doctor told me, you will experience these cramps or contractions no matter what, and the more babies you have the stronger the cramps/contractions will be while nursing.

Long Nursing Sessions

Remember babies like to be close, so don't rush through nursing. Babies need to get used to nursing and more comfortable.  You may feel like you're constantly nursing.  This is normal since most babies nurse every 2-3 hours.  This is normal and necessary for establishing your milk supply.
Watch and listen for you baby's hunger cues.  Babies grow a lot in the first couple of weeks. In the first 24 hours of your sweet baby's life, you will go through what is caused cluster feedings.  This is perfectly normal. Your baby will want to nurse more frequently and often.  It will balance out after a short while.

You may start to think that you're not producing enough milk with all the frequent nursing.  Relax, you're producing the just the perfect amount for your baby.  Remember, a nursing baby stimulates the milk production better than a pump.  The more you nurse, the more milk you will produce.

If you're strictly pumping, try not to pay attention to the volume you get in the first few days.  Your body produces colostrum first and that beginning milk is just enough that the baby needs within the first few days.

Leaking and Engorgement

As your milk comes in, your breasts are going to feel full and may leak.  I would often wake up in the middle of the night when Avery would wake up to pump and as I was hooking up, milk would literally be dripping from my boobs.  This can happen any time if your breasts get too full.  Normally, after your body adapts to producing milk, it will even out and shouldn't leak milk as often.

When your milk is coming in the first week, your breast will start to feel engorged, Totally normally.  You shouldn't experience any pain, but if you do, its because they're full and you to need to nurse or pump to relieve the pressure.

For more information on breastfeeding and pumping, contact your local lactation consultant.  They're always available for advice or even lending an ear or hand when you're struggling or feeling discouraged.


Baby falling asleep

Newborns are sleepy.  They need more than 16 hours of sleep a day, so nursing can be a challenge at times.  Don't be surprised if you have to keep waking your baby up to continue to nurse.
Some helpful ways of keeping them awake: change their diaper before you begin to nurse and keep them just in a diaper.  This will wake them up and make them more alert.  Once they get latched and comfy, they may begin to doze back off to dreamland.  To keep them sucking use a baby wipe on them, rub it over their head, back and feet.  Babies don't normally like their feet played with, so give them a little tickle every 10 seconds or so to keep them alert.  Talk to them, let them know that it's time to eat and get a full tummy.

Thirsty?
You may become super thirsty while you nurse.  Most women reported that they would become very thirsty while nursing, so keep water and snacks nearby to keep you satisfied during you nursing sessions.

Set goals
Setting goals for yourself while breastfeeding is a great!  Like I mentioned before, I achieved my first goal today with breastfeeding.  I've made it to three months. My second goal is to make it to 6 months and so on.  When I was talking to my LC after I had Avery, I told her that with Kingston, I only made it to about 2 months and said it with some disappointment.  She then turned it around and said, "WOW, you made it 2 months! That's great!  You were able to provide your baby with some of the best vitamins and minerals in the world for 2 months.  That's one of the best gifts you can ever give your children is your milk, even if its 2 weeks, 2 months or until they're 2.  You're feeding your baby and helping their development."  So be confident when you're breastfeeding no matter how long you do it.

Formula
I still don't produce a lot of milk and I do supplement with formula.  Do I feel guilty about this?  Absolutely not.  Did I feel guilty ever? Yes.  I did when I first started giving formula to Kingston because I thought I failed.  WRONG! Kingston received breast milk from me and he received formula.  The main thing was, I was feeding my child.  Avery gets both formula and milk.  Roughly he gets one or the other every other feeding.  If he's having a formula bottle, I'll pump and he'll get that milk the next feeding.

So there you have it.  The truths about breastfeeding and all its glory.  Remember ladies, be confident in breast feeding.  No matter how often or long you do it, you're feeding your baby.  Don't feel guilty or upset if it doesn't work out how you thought it would.  Love your baby and cherish the time you did/have while nursing your baby and sharing that special bond.




Monday, February 23, 2015

Update

Well, it's been a while that's for sure.  It's been almost a year since I was able to last post.  We had some changes happen that took my time.  Kingston, my oldest son, turned a year old in August. He also just became a big brother at the beginning of this month.  After losing our Angel Baby, Harper, last April, we were shocked to find out that we were pregnant again.  My husband and I found out at the end of May; about seven weeks after our miscarriage that I was pregnant again.  I carried to term and delivered our second son, Avery Jung McClymont on February 4, 2015 at 4:07 p.m. weighing in at 7lbs 12oz and 19 1/2 inches long.  10 ounces heavier than his big brother, but 1/2 an inch shorter.

Luckly, this pregnancy went a lot smoother than my pregnancy with Kingston.  I wasn't put on bed rest for high blood pressure this time, but I did however have gestational diabetes.

The last year we purchased our first home as some of you may know.  We got all moved in and got started on our home makeover projects.  We got our bathroom painted, Avery's nursery decorated, new appliances, some landscaping done, and a fence was put up.

Soon, I 'll be returning to work at my job.  I'm currently working in FASHION!! I love it!!! Clothes are the best!

I'm also looking into starting my own daycare and preparing for that.  Hopefully soon, I'll be up and running so I won't have to miss any time with my precious boys and I'll really be able to be a full time stay-at-home mommy.  Though I'm only working 32 hours a week and I get to spend quite a bit of time at home with my boys, it will be nice to be 100% soon.

This will allow me to spend more time with my blog and family.  '

For now, that's it.  Keep an eye out for posts coming in the near future of projects we've completed and much more.


--Cindel