Moving. Is. The. Worst.

It’s true. Moving suuuuuuucks.

I have a theory. Moving is so terrible that talking or thinking about a past move brings on a sort of PTSD situation. This is why no one tells you how bad it is. And so when you ask your friends and family and acquaintances for recommendations, no one really wants to think about that horrible time in their life. So they just pretend they didn’t hear you or avert their eyes and walk run away in a state of avoidance.

I get it. I don’t want to talk about it either. But I think that’s how I ended up with the WORST MOVERS EVER and I was crying on moving day but only because the mean mover guy made me hang out in 40 degree weather with no coat for two hours while he told me AFTER LOADING ALL MY STUFF that it was going to cost about twice what I thought. Fuck that guy. (I mean, thank goodness my husband’s company paid for the move, but it was still awful. And they couldn’t fit Babystar’s playhouse. And I was cold and tired and hungry and he kept adding wrong and starting over and talking to someone on that stupid phone clipped to his ear and omg I’m having flashbacks.)

Ok. Forget it. Never use Long Distance Movers. Oh yeah, I’m linking to them so you know exactly who I think you should never ever use. Trust me on this one.

(Though the guys that moved us IN in Colorado were simply lovely. But they also contracted for United Movers so maybe use them instead.)

So, moving sucks. Colorado is AWESOME, you guys. FREAKING. AWESOME.

But moving still sucks. I am STILL not completely unpacked. And that’s not even counting all the boxes in the basement. There is still one box in my bedroom and a few hidden in closets throughout this farmhouse. I doubt I will ever truly finish. I give up.

ANYWAY.

I have totally been feeding Babystar this whole time. And we went some fun places too. We also went a lot of boring places so Babystar got some cool Patience Presents. And I bought more Cat & Jack clothes from Target because they are so darn cute. And I bought other stuff because I am a sleep-deprived sucker.

I have a pile of receipts and no time or desire to take pictures or think of clever titles for separate blog posts so I’m going to cheat and list a whole bunch of stuff here.

(You know, for the Smithsonian. Yep, that one. Babystar turns eighteen in 2033. Hey Smithsonian, hit me up then, k? K.)

  • Princess Poppy pillowcase (for the bed she still won’t sleep in) $4.79
  • Princess Poppy blanket (that she at least uses in her teepee) $9.59
  • This adorable shirt because why is Target so cute!? $4.50
  • This shirt for St. Patrick’s day $4.50
  • Two more shirts and some leggings $5, $4.50, $5
  • Princess Poppy hat that we lost the same day $0.90

 

poppy hat

  • Some Usborne books from a friend’s virtual party plus shipping $21.97
  • Brand new awesome stuffed Branch doll from thrift store $5
  • If You Give a Mouse a Cookie book from thrift store $1
  • heart shaped rock $6
  • green rock from a random shop in downtown Boulder $2
  • quartz crystal (yes, the kid loves rocks) $5
  • Blue!! from eBay (that tag lasted twenty years outside of my house but twenty seconds inside of my house) $26.70

blue puppy

  • 3-pack of Contigo water bottles from Costco $11.99
  • Coffee and snacks and tip at Java Mama which is a cool coffeeshop with a playspace that I wish was closer to my house $12.43
  • three sets of 4T pajamas from Costco that were marked $3.99 but I just noticed while looking at the receipt that I paid $7.99 each and I’m slightly annoyed although I knew that price was too good to be true
  • dinosaur dig kits from the Target dollar aisles $3 (times three)
  • four mall dinosaur rides, you know, those animal shaped ride on things in every mall in America $40
  • four mall carousel rides $4
  • another trip to Frolic, an indoor play place a bit too far from the house $9.86
  • a trip with dad to the Denver Children’s Museum $26
  • three crochet finger puppets from the grocery store line $2.99 (I didn’t know the price until they rang up and I was already feeling too defeated to try to put them back)
  • m&m tee shirt and m&m’s from dad’s trip to NY $29.65
  • Aldi wipes $3.49 times four because I made my son bring back a bunch from the east coast in February because Aldi wipes 4 lyfe and now anyone that visits me from the east coast needs to please bring me Aldi wipes because I miss them so much ok thanks
  • Other wipes $3.79, $3.49, $4.99, $6.99
  • Diapers $14.99, $7.99, $21.99, $21.99, $14.99, $14.99
  • laundry detergent (she shares with us obvs) $4 per month so $16 through April
  • Seventh Generation Coconut care baby wash $7.99
  • Honest bubble bath (that she asked for but hates) $10.79
  • Babyganics bath wash $8.99
  • bathtub crayons $2.99
  • dinosaur egg bath fizz thingy that she hates $1.49, $1.49
  • January food $159.42
  • February food $144.06
  • March food $142.24
  • April food $146.94 (Hit me up if you want the full list. I’m talking to you, Smithsonian. Also, I see your kid’s meal price jumps, Chick-fil-A.)

RAISING BABYSTAR: $28,033.62

(And now, hopefully, back to our regularly scheduled sass.)

 

 

#FarmLife

What is better than a dozen eggs?

A DOZEN CHICKS!

I’ve wanted backyard chickens forEVER and we rented a farm in Colorado so DUH.

There are like four or five barns in my backyard. I’m turning one of them into a super fly chicken coop.

And I better hurry because LOOK: CHICKS!!

chicks1

One of these chicks is not like the other, tho.

chicks4

Ok, the stuffed chick doesn’t actually live in the little brooder thingy. I totally staged that picture. But. Babystar’s stuffed chick was the most expensive of all the baby chicks we bought at $6.99.

OMG you guys, she named it Eggy. With no prompting (that I know of). What a great name!

Also, I feel like I need a subblog (is that a word?) about the cost of backyard chickens. Then when they start laying eggs I can calculate the cost per egg. Jeez, I need to calm down. Just kidding, I love this plan! Off to find my farm store receipts. BRB.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $26,863.79

 

 

Monday’s Mama is Legit My Hero.

This Monday, I am excited to introduce you to Leah Martin. Leah is a Colorado blogger (like me!) and she has all the secrets of living clutter-free with kids (not like me!). She and her husband have three kids under five. She writes about living a full life with less at Less in the Nest.

Leah1

Read her blog. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. It might change your life. I have definitely changed my buying habits so I can have less stuff. Less stuff means less cleaning. Less cleaning means more time.

Now I just have to figure out where to put all the crap we already have.

Leah even explains WHY kids create so much clutter. She writes about other things, too. She shares great DIY instructions and interesting recipes and writes awesome articles about parenting. But I am OBSESSED with her ‘less in the nest’ philosophies.

Enough about me, though. Leah was kind enough to answer some questions about Colorado and clutter.

1. What is the coolest thing about Colorado? What is the most annoying thing about Colorado? What is the Colorado-est thing about Colorado?

Getting to go to the mountains whenever we have a day or two free is definitely the coolest thing about Colorado. The culture and the economy revolve around the outdoors. The most annoying thing about Colorado is that it’s hard to breathe! These high altitudes make for less oxygen, and as a bad side effect, the air quality is not good a lot of days. The most Colorado-est thing about Colorado is that the first snow is a big, exciting event. People literally mope around all fall until that soft powder falls. I’m talking, standing on street corners with signs to protest the lack of snow kinds of things. And when that first snow comes, it’ll probably melt the next day. 

2. Your blog is awesome! I love the idea of having LESS in my nest. I cannot even believe how many boxes we moved from Virginia to Colorado. What can I do? Donate all of it? Please help.

Aw, thank you! And congrats on the move! I remember when we moved a few years ago, I was shocked by how much stuff we had. There are lots of outside-the-box ways to donate it  in Colorado. You can print off a label and ship it to the Goodwill in Amazon boxes. You can even call Arc and they’ll come pick it up for you! But if it’s junk, just toss it (as bad as that sounds!) Once, we put my husband’s beloved recliner in the driveway for pickup. Arc showed up, took one look at it, and turned around.  When my husband got home that day, he couldn’t believe his chair was still sitting in the driveway!

3. Everyone outside Colorado wants to know: are people here walking around high all the time? What are your thoughts on the legal weed?

In my little pocket of suburbia, I don’t notice legalized marijuana at all. But really, people already do dumb enough stuff without it. 

4. It’s the PTA Bakesale: homemade, store bought, or NOPE?

I’m a “homemade” in my mind, but since baby #3 was born, it’s more realistically a “nope.” And also, we’re going to homeschool, so I’m the parent, the teacher, and the association. 

Leah2

I want to be like Leah when I grow up.

Stop This Train.

Babystar visited the Emergency Room this week.

She was scared but very brave and very very sweet.

Babystar just wanted to make sure that I would hold her the whole time at the doctor’s office. I promised that I would. We first went to Urgent Care because Babystar had not peed in twenty-four hours. And she had a fever for about half of that time. AND I gave her a choice of peeing or going to the doctor and she told me that she didn’t want to pee. So into the car we went.

Ok, technically she had not peed in twenty-three and a half hours, but Urgent Care closes at seven and the co-pay difference is $300. And since we just moved here, Babystar does not yet have a pediatrician. That changes today, by the way.

(Anyone in Boulder have a pediatrician recommendation pretty please?)

The doctors and nurses at Foothills ER were all very very nice but they definitely underestimated the strength of my little ToddlerMonster. Since she had not peed, there was concern of a possible UTI or other infection. Which meant they needed a urine sample. She is not potty-trained, and she was straight up refusing to pee, so they needed to do a baby catheter.

I wanted to cry but I was a brave strong mama. (We were there alone due to family logistical reasons.) And Babystar was on my lap because I PROMISED. (Well actually she was between my legs but she knew she was on mama’s lap so that’s all that mattered.)

Do you know that if you take a young child to the ER they basically put them in a straight jacket? They hold baby’s arms by his or her side and wrap a sheet around baby’s entire torso. MY baby was screaming and fighting this whole situation, and they wanted ME to hold her arms inside this torture device. MY sweet baby wiggled her arms up and out, but not to rip off the sheet or push away the nurses. She just wanted to hold my hands.

Things were not going as smoothly at the other end of the gurney. The nurses cleaned and prepped her but holding her down for the catheter was not working at all. Babystar is strong like mom, y’all. She has a shirt that says so and everything. They had to go get another nurse to help hold down my little thirty pound kicking machine.

They tried.

It didn’t matter in the end.

She. Peed. Everywhere.

I have never been so happy to be soaked in baby pee. (She was on my lap, remember?)

And for those med students following along, since she was prepped, she was clean. A quick thinking nurse collected a sample for testing. Actually, I think they managed to get two vials and they probably could have gotten twenty. There was SO. MUCH. PEE.

She even peed on her head. I didn’t know that she peed on her head, so when the nurses left and I was cleaning her and changing her clothes and giving her a million kisses, I kissed her head. Right on the pee. It was gross. I didn’t care.

Hashtag momlife, right?

I got to wear awesome blue paper scrubs and pretend to be J.D.

We waited around for about thirty more minutes and Babystar was pronounced bacteria-free.

BOOM. $350.

We have been talking a lot about the potty the last couple of weeks. Babystar will be three in June, and she is showing all the textbooks signs that she is ready for the potty. She knows when she is peeing or pooping in her diaper (because she always tells me right before it happens so I can be ready to change her because “remember that time I had a rash and it hurt?”) She hasn’t had a wet diaper overnight in almost a year. She has the ability to hold it. Obviously. And she actually DID pee in the potty about two weeks ago. We made her a chart with stickers and did the pee pee dance and she got some chocolate candies and we did ALL THE THINGS.

But she hates it. She doesn’t want to use the potty and she tells us all the time. So I told her we would stop. And that while she was sick, she could have m&m’s every time she pees in her diaper. My sweet funny Babystar got so excited and said, “we don’t have to go on the potty train anymore?”

Did I just push her potty training back to age four? Probably.

Will she go to college in diapers? Maybe.

Am I the worst mom in the world? Nah.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $26,819.73

 

New Digs = New Haunts.

OMG YOU GUYS. I really miss Nook and Busy Bees and Scramble AND all of the awesome playgrounds in and around Arlington, Virginia. Hey NoVa parents, go out and play. Don’t take it for granted. Especially get yourselves and your kids to Watkins Regional Park and Clemyjontri and Potomac Yards.

Don’t get me wrong, I AM ABSOLUTELY SMITTEN with Colorado. But we are still figuring out the indoor play spaces. And on the few non-windy, above 60 degrees days, we go out looking for our favorite parks. We have found a few great playgrounds and a few, um, small interesting playgrounds. We are still looking for our most favorite park ever, but it’s more of a Spring Goal.

We HAVE found a few indoor play spaces that we like. WOW! Children’s Museum in Lafayette, Colorado is kind of the bomb diggity. We joined the first time we visited ($99). It has everything a toddler could want — a light piano, art room, tiny grocery store, pirate ship, dance studio, sand box, and so much more.

 

 

We also found a fun play space in Thornton, Colorado called Frolic. We’ve only been once ($9.86) because it’s kind of far away, but it was adorable and great for an afternoon of fun. It was NOT as good as Nook or Scramble or even Busy Bees but really, what is? (ARLINGTON YOU LUCKY BASTARDS!!) Frolic has a great CedarWorks play structure and smaller dollhouse, a train table, mini grocery store, orange ball pit, and a few other ride-on and bounce-on toys that kept Babystar’s attention for over two hours. I do wish it had better seats for the grown-ups. The picnic tables in the corner are great for Toddler Snack Time but not so great for mama’s lumbar support.

 

 

We are looking for more, more, always more, but so far everything I have found is open for like three hours from nine to noon only two days a week and I just can’t get out of the house that early. Maybe someday. I believe in us.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $26,397.74