Hello? Is this thing on?

Wow, been almost 2 months since I posted.  Once again, I need to clear the cobwebs…

I’ve just been so consumed in EVERYTHING going on w/everybody that I haven’t had time to blog.  Facebook and Instagram have been getting updated frequently, but that’s about it.  Mainly, I update Facebook b/c my relatives are mostly all on there.  Being that we moved out of NJ into the middle of the cornfields, that’s another way for everyone to keep up with one another.  But this here blog?  Well, no one in my family really knows about it.  It’s my “anonymous” place on the interwebs…that’s now full of cobwebs.

Thing is, I’m not even sure where I want to go with this blog anymore.  I started blogging years ago just to track my babies’ development in utero and out.  Then it became me wanting to get fit and my kiddie entries fell to the way side.  Then I got back into Fashion and Beauty and then getting fit again.  See what I mean?  This blog is everywhere except one focal point.

Then again, it is my blog, so I guess the focal point would be whatever I wanted to talk about, but…At least I see that my blogging has enabled a way for me to have a tool to look back on things and some things make me feel goofy and other things make me feel old (like what?  I started this blog when Razz was but a whee baby?  She’s now 5, by the way).

As always, I need to learn to make time.  I think I’m getting better with juggling family time and such, but I need to make time for this little home on the web.  I wonder if I’ll keep this blog or start a new one…

Posting from the Park

Been so crazy busy w/work (and other stuff) lately that I can’t even just add picture links to the posts in draft mode….like the finale to my Mother’s Day Surprise.  I’m glad I wrote that draft when I had a bit more time because it’s a wordy one, y’all…anyway, seems like my only “free” time to post (via phone) is now – while “watching” Beans at pre-ball practice.  I guess, technically, I’m still not “free”.

Being busy has definitely worn me out. I ran all of once in 2wks, but I can’t even call it that.  I woke up late Monday and was just able to get on the ‘mill for all of 15mins…still on week5 in couch to 5k.  I think I gave mysef an anxiety attack about running 20 mins straight for week 5 day 3 that I just stalled myself…grrr…get a grip, Steph!

I really, really need to step up this workout thing.  My midesction is still looking like I’m 7months+ pregnant, but I popped my last baby a year and 8 months ago.

Being busy has also messed up my wannabe fashionista comeback.  I’m back to jeans/shorts and a tee and sneakers (bc my toesies are in desperate need of a pedi!).  Such a shame bc I’m loving some of my new purchases that finally came – jewelry and new jeans, etc.  I did have a non-tee outfit last week, but of course, we were rushing off somewhere and hen we got home, it was back to work for me….

Hopefully things will let up soon…I’ve got some crazy big news up my sleeve ;)

On Thrifting…

BCBGirls SandalsThrifting – The art of buying(selling) used items. Said more eloquently, here’s Wikipedia’s definition:

Thrifting refers to the act of shopping at a thrift store, flea market, garage sale, or a shop of a charitable organization, usually with the intent of finding interesting items at a cheap price.

Do you shop at thrift stores? I know everyone raves at the great finds they’ve come home with and it ranges from clothes/shoes/accessories to housewares to furniture, but I haven’t been that lucky. Then again, I’ve only been to Goodwill 3 times and another local shop once (Saturday, actually).

I went to a store yesterday that mainly sold clothes, shoes and accessories (and some books). They had great selections and saw a lot that I would actually wear, but in the end, I left with a blazer, a lightweight casual jacket and a pair of shoes – that I debated forever. I don’t know if I’ll even wear the shoes…knowing someone else wore them. What if they had some kind of athelete’s foot fungus type thing going? I mean, they are beautiful BCBGirls sandals (pictured above) so I really doubt anyone would wear them w/yuckiness showing out in the open…but, what if they had stinky, sweaty feet?

See, this is why I have a hard time buying second-hand. What if they had some kind of skin rash? What if they had/have pets and the pet had fleas…??? I’m not pretentious, nor am I a hardcore germaphobe, but I guess I just care too much about the previous owner(s). Ok, I’m a little germaphobe-y, but I think it’s more of a mental outlook for me.

Last year, I bought 2 vintage designer clutch bags from eBay. Now, I’m not sure if they’re authentic, even if the seller said they were, but I loved the look of them and the prices were decent. Have I used these bags at all? Nope. Is it because I haven’t had an occasion to wear them too? Partly. The main reason is when I did have somewhere to wear them to, they had a smell to them…one wreaked of smoke and the other just had that “old” smell that I associate w/my grandmother’s closet. I’ve since aired them out and they seem fine and wearable now…BUT, another thing that bugs me besides the previous owners’ possible skin issues or hygienic routines, is the previous owner’s history.

What if the previous owner had financial issues? What if they went broke? What if they had just bad luck overall?

Maybe it’s my Filipino background and that all the superstitious, spiritual legends playback in my head where every object, animate or inanimate, have a life to them – either of their own or from their owner. I have seen many a movie / show where something like an old, antique object brings about luck, good or bad, to the new owners stemming from the old owner. If the old owner had a streak of bad luck and went broke, the new owner would inherit that spirit after taking that antique object home / owning it. So then, new owner gets bad luck too. I’ve even seen an extreme instance where a family is sickly and all die off eventually (dramatic much? Welcome to Filipino Cinema) and something of theirs was picked up by someone new and they all started to get sickly until some spiritual medium was able to tell them to get rid of that object.

Does anyone else think this way? I hope I’m not the only one that’s this kooky.

At this point, all the thrift stuff I’ve purchased have not been used – except for a pair of shorts that still had tags on them and another pair that I washed 3x prior to wearing. Even the baskets that I bought (for $0.25 each!!!) are just sitting in a plastic bag in the closet. I started to clean them w/disinfecting wipes and the color actually changed! I don’t know if it’s because it was SO dirty or because it was Clorox and some bleaching agent could be on those wipes (I don’t know, I never checked). Which brings me to my next point…

What is the post-thrift shopping protocol? How many times should you wash the items before wearing? How many times do you get it dry cleaned? How many times do you wash an item (housewares) or wipe it down (like the baskets)? How many times do you spray disinfectant on shoes or accessories prior to using them?

I love the idea of thrifting and the possibility of saving so much money, but I don’t know how to get over my aversions. Someone needs to help me because look, these are pretty decent finds. I kind of think I paid too much for them (I picture them cheaper if at Goodwill, but Goodwill probably wouldn’t have the same selections), but still not full price. Help me here…aren’t these great finds?

Leopard lined blazer:
Leopard lined blazer

Lightweight Outdoorsy Jacket:
Lightweight jacket

What Else Can I Do?

It seems like every other week (if we’re lucky), one of the girls gets sick and then it just gets passed onto the next. Yesterday, Shrimp gets a fever out of nowhere (again). Last week? Beans had a bit of a cough, but we actually managed to keep it to just her. The week before that? Shrimp had the hives and fever. By the time all is said and done, this household is “sick free” for about 3 days until the cycle starts itself again. I’ve stocked up on Lysol and Clorox wipes. We also invested in an air purifier (yesterday). Let’s hope that lessens the germiness, shall we? I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired…

/end rant

Scatterbrained…

I’ve been posting mostly to Facebook the past few months and, obviously, not here or Twitter. The “status” update there says “What’s on your mind” or something like that. What’s on my mind? Obviously TOO much to post as I went over the character limit:

What’s on my mind? Too many things! Care to step inside? No? Too bad, here it is anyway…I need to just let it out…

1 – Lola being sick (grammie on Mom’s side). She was hospitalized a few weeks ago and stayed there for about a week w/a visit to ICU too. She’s doing better now, but still not fully recovered. She will be 89 this November and we were planning a HUGE party for her 90th next year.

2 – Mum going to the Philippines (aka “PI” for “Philippine Islands”) to be with her. I feel for Mum. She’s got 2 daughters that are pregnant (yes, my sis is pregnant…2 weeks behind me, though I look like I’m 20 weeks ahead of her) and a sick mother. Mum was so torn about going to the Philippines to be w/her Mom and staying here to be be our Mom. We convinced her to go to PI and that we had our husbands, MILs (who are both nurses) and other friends and family. Besides, even if she stayed here, she wouldn’t really be “here”, ya know?

3 – Razz and Beans being sick. My poor girls caught a cough/cold/fever last Thursday and has managed to keep us in for most of Labor Day Weekend (except for when we snuck out to go to Target yesterday). It was scary on Saturday b/c Razz started looking and feeling really weak again and started her little cough – which, from what we learned back in the Spring – triggers her asthma. I didn’t want to be going to the ER again. Back in the Spring, they were in the ER and Razz ended up getting admitted then getting transferred to another hospital with a PICU (pediatric ICU) b/c her oxygen levels weren’t going up no matter how much they gave her. So horrible seeing her struggle with breathing, being so weak and just not being herself. Anyway, their doctor was away until today so I started giving both of them their nebulizer treatment and, thank goodness, it looks like it’s working.

We weren’t planning on staying home this weekend. pDaddy was going to VA for a basketball tournament and we were planning on going to my parents’ on Friday and staying at my sister’s the rest of the weekend. So, I didn’t force pDaddy to get groceries before he left. Yes, he’s actually been doing the groceries b/c I can’t walk much and he doesn’t want me walking much to trigger labor just yet. Good thing my in-laws came to the rescue. They brought us dinner on Friday, slept over, went grocery shopping for us on Saturday and slept over again Saturday night. They left us Sunday morning w/a stocked fridge and pantry and a chocolate cake to boot (MIL was in a baking mood Saturday night).

4 – My last day of work last Friday, but man, did they seriously put me to work the past couple of months. Even on Thursday, I was working so much that I barely got out of my chair and my legs and feet being so swollen were proof of that!

5 – I was also worried about pDaddy going to VA for his tourney and that hurricane named Earl that was hovering about the area.

6 – What to name this lil girl who’s moving around in my belly like she’s her own lil hurricane.

7 – Putting things away / cleaning – AKA Nesting - but I can’t even do much b/c I am SO huge and slow!

8 – Getting the rest of Beans’ school supplies. She starts PreK-4 on Friday…I can’t believe it. My lil girl, who’ve I’ve stayed home with since she was born, is actually going to start school! This Friday is a half day for her, but the rest of her days are full days from 8am to 3pm. Her school supply list isn’t so bad and actually, Mum and my siblings have been buying her stuff when they go out shopping, but I still don’t get why she needs 2 bottles of ketchup!

9 – Beans ACTUALLY starting school on Friday …oh my. Wait, I mentioned that already, right? Still in shock. I think dropping her off at school will send me into such an emotional and hormonal outrage that I’ll end up in labor. lol

10 – Thinking I was going into labor Sunday night (see previous entry).

11 – Hoping and praying, whenever Shrimpie does come, she’s happy and healthy like her sisters :)

12 – SLEEP! I miss SLEEP! And I know I’m not even going to get much anytime soon w/baby coming!

13 – How I’m going to juggle 3 kids and 1 being in school!

14 – Having to go back to work. Can’t we just win the lottery already?

15 – Having only a 2 bedroom house with 3 kids. Speaking of lottery…I really do wish we could just win it to get a bigger house AND not work. Did I mention Beans and Razz want a dog? Um, not quite yet my dears. We were supposed to list our house this spring/summer, but our basement renovation took longer than expected (that’s what happens when family does it and just does it on the side) and now, there’s no way in hell we’re going to be able to pack all our crap and move. At least getting our basement done forced us to purge some of crap. In any case, we don’t even know where to move to. pDaddy is set on moving out of state for a cheaper cost of living – which I get. However, I’m more worried b/c I’ll have a newborn and 2 other kiddos and all our family is here – with the exception of pDaddy’s sister and her family. My sister will also be having a little girl in the beginning of October and of course I want to be around to meet my new niece. In addition, who’s going to help us when we need it? Plus, we don’t trust anyone to babysit for us except our moms. How’s that going to work out?

See? Way too much going on in my head!

My Own Place…

Lately, I’ve been debating on whether or not to get my own domain. I haven’t had one in a while and I know it’s not crazy expensive, but hey, nothing beats free! I love wordpress.com, but I don’t like that I can’t customize as much as I want to. There are pre-made themes that I can use that have a custom header, but it still seems so limited.

So, do I go and get my own domain and stick to wordpress via wordpress.org or switch to blogger and stay free, but way more custoimzable? hmmm

I think the first step is that I need to just be sure I can dedicate more time to blogging. It would be kind of a waste to divulge so much money and/time and energy making a blog pretty if I’ll barely use it, right?

I’m hoping to get better about blogging. It’s just been really crazy and then I end up feeling so behind that I don’t know where to start, but I’m going to get on that and just do it…

Oh, Happy Cinco de Mayo! Have a couple shots of tequila and some yummy margaritas for me.

I Have a Theory: Smoking & Allergies

I am an ex-smoker and while I’ve ALWAYS had allergies since I was a young kid, they’ve gotten worse in the past few years. I blame it on me not smoking anymore. I smoked, heavily, before I got pregnant with Beans, but started up again a few months after she was born. She didn’t want to be nursed and I just had a multitude of reasons as to why I started again…one of which had to do w/old habits and whatever else. I stopped again when I got pregnant with Razz. I nursed Razz so I didn’t start up again (had a bit of slip here and there a couple years later, but that’s besides the point). All of a sudden I now had Spring AND Fall AND Winter allergies!

So, what’s my theory? Your allergies develop and/get worse AFTER you quit smoking. Now, I’m not saying, smoke so your allergies aren’t so bad, but I think it makes sense. My friends who are ex-smokers agree with my theory. One never even had allergies until AFTER she quit smoking.

I think it’s because our lungs are clear and our nostrils, etc. are too, thus leaving more (clean) room for allergens to attack. Think about it. When you smoke, you’re inhaling smoke which is dirty. You’re not leaving much room for allergens to stick onto anything. Picture a filter…any filter…a filter for an air condtioner or a vacuum, for example. When it’s new and clean, it can pick up dirt like no other. But, once it starts getting full of dirt, there’s not much room for more, until you clean it off.

Now picture that filter as your nose or lungs. When you’re smoking, it’s dirty and doesn’t leave much room for allergens, but when it’s clean and free of all the dirt and pollution that comes from smoking, there’s more room for those nasty allergens, like pollen and dust, to stick to.

I think it makes sense. What says you? Inquiring minds want to know.