Friday, January 31, 2014

For the 100th Time {7QT}

Ever feel like you have told someone something literally one hundred times? "Pick up your dirty socks!" "Stop poking your brother!" "I don't care how much you love IronMan. When it's school time, your pencil goes in your writing hand." "For the hundredth time, stop...!"

You get the picture. This cabin fever (as so fondly illustrated by Kelly and sympathized to on all levels by Christy) just multiplies that feeling that I might, in fact, be going bat shit crazy by the constant repetition in our lives.

Whilst linking up with Jen, I'll try to give you a taste of what I'm pretty sure I've done at least a hundred times today or at least this week.

(Oh, and exaggeration, not one of my issues. Don't discuss with LegenDaddy - he might try to persuade you otherwise.)

Wiping noses. Probably my least favorite of all. But, hey, why not start with something we all do way more than we wish. If Blaise can feel the snot in his nose, he asks for it to be wiped. So, really, I'm just wiping up a feeling. It makes him happy though, so I suppose that's worth it.

I long for the day when noses can be wiped by their owner's. Especially in those moments when I go to grab the already grossly overused hankie, only to find my hand has found the snotty bits.
Answering the feeding call of the young. Pretty sure I live with lion cubs for the amount of times I hear "Do you think we could have a snack now?" and "I'm hungry! Can we eat?" And of course, the "snacking foods" are particular likes of theirs'. Not just anything will suffice.
This task becomes 87% more challenging when the kitchen pantry is mostly empty due to above mentioned colds combined with the negative degree windchill we've experienced most of the week.
The poking your brother comment up at the top. Nope, wasn't kidding there. What is it about long winter days that makes small people want to physically irritate one another until the victim screeches? Sheesh.
Both my kiddos are introverts for the most part, but Dom has decided that he must have a playmate at *all* the times now. Blaise attempts to hide, Dom follows and then will come to let me know that "No one will play with me!" You'd never know that we've been going out of our way to add extra indoor fun and activities to our days.

You know when you have invested in many, many beautifully illustrated and written children's books, and then your two year old insists on reading that one poorly composed book over and over and over? 

If you have or have had a two year old, of course you do.

It's in their nature to seek out the one book hiding on the shelf that is your least favorite and beg to read it again and again...

"Our" current favorite is this one:

At least I can almost sneak a small catnap in while reading it since I have it memorized.

--- 5 ---
Not knowing what to make for dinner. Dinner, what is that? Do we *need* to eat that meal? Yes, I know this is very closely related to #2, but still the need for snacks and the need to have a somewhat substantial dinner on the table in a timely manner do vary some.
Even when I meal plan, I seem to lack all the energy and drive to actually stick to it and cook when the time comes. This might have something to do with almost every dinner meal I've eaten in the past few weeks making my stomach churn and knot.
This baby on the inside definitely does not equate me eating with him growing. He's a little stinker in his own way.

Starting a chapter of my book over again. Again, I think any mom with tiny people dancing around her while she attempts some precious reading time knows this feeling. I'm not even sure when the appropriate time is to just give up trying and stop reading that one sentence and a half over and over. When I've memorized it? When I could most likely write it backwards?

Lastly, in no special relation to the above except that I have mentioned the Sheenazing Awards quite a few times in the past week...

Thank you!!! Thank you to each and every one of you that voted for me. I didn't win in any categories, but I was still honored to even be nominated, so thank you for that. It was a ray of sunshine in this dreary month. 

While you're at it, make sure to go check out the Winners and the Nominees for many great blogs to keep your days full of wonderful reading.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!
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All rights reserved. ©Sarah G. Ortiz
This post For the 100th Time {7QT} first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 31 January 2014
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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Currently {Vol.1}

Thinking about:

Why I blog. It's been a hard past few months, and it definitely has shown in the lack of posting around here. I do love it though - I love sharing and emptying my brain somewheres. I love keeping up with you and hearing about your thoughts. I love the sense of mama community that having this .com gives me. 

I do often think of giving it up, but then I realize that I count it amongst my 10 (do I even have that many?) top favorite activities I get to do to keep myself mentally, emotionally, spiritually healthy. So, on I write/share randomness. 


On the line: This fabulous piece by Haley of Carrots for Michaelmas on the Pope and the Culture of Life featured on Catholic Exchange. A blip for you: "We must give thanks for the noise of life in a world of death."


In real paper or on my digital make-do: Making headway on my 2014 Book Goals - 
I have completed Pride and Prejudice though I sadly still don't own any of these beautiful editions of classics. And also Wives and Daughters via IBooks.
Also on IBooks I'm finally making my way through Orthodoxy!

Listening to:

Been playing a mix of Aloe BlaccPunch Brothers, and Billy Joel. Random, but they seem to mesh fairly well.


LegenDaddy is done with Downton Abbey after last season - he can no longer handle the soap opera drama of it all, so I am watching it solo. Sherlock, however, has us both hooked. Are you keeping up with either this Season?

Cooking in the kitchen:

Crock-potted some Lentil + Beef Stew yesterday from From Your Freezer To Your Family: Slow Cooker Freezer Recipes. We've loved pretty much every recipe that we've tried from Stephanie's book!

Rest of the mealplan through Monday:
Vegetarian Chili
Guinness Stew (For St. Brigid's Day)
Baked BBQ Chicken w/ oven roasted potats, brussel sprouts, and salad
Homemade chicken nuggets w/ sauteed veggies

Super excited about:

Our coming into Full Communion with the Church (2 weeks + a bit!) AND my first Catholic Women's Conference - I'll be at the local Rochester one in March. Any readers attending? I'd love to meet up with you!

Thankful for:

Cuddley little boy hugs. Blaise, if you try to kiss him, always insists on a hugging session to wrap it up.  At night, I often am awoken by him wrapping his tiny arm around my neck in a hug (right before he sleepily says "Excuse me" and attempts to push me out of bed...)

Super grateful for the weather "warming up" to the 20s and 30s this weekend. The 0º craziness is just not cool, New York. After holing up inside the beginning of the week, our cupboards were begging to be filled, so I ended up dragging two tiny puffed up penguins (think Christmas Story) out to the grocery store in weather that boasted a windchill of -16º. Yeeps. No fun.

Linking up with A Mama Collective

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This post Currently {Vol. 1} first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 30 January 2014

Monday, January 27, 2014

24 Weeks + WIWS {Vol. 3}

I figure since I am more than halfway through this pregnancy, I owe you an update on Mr. bebe. I passed the 24 week mark this past Thursday, and while it does seem like time is passing me by ridiculously fast, I also have felt the daily drag of this pregnancy more so than my other two.

I have been trying to keep my head up and push through with as little complaining as possible because I know so many women who are trying desperately to get pregnant or who have had their sweet babies taken from them so early. But, still I am plodding through the hardest pregnancy thus far. 

Take all the hard things from my pregnancy with Dom - water retention, super swelling, aching back (and this time all new - hips!) and combine with it the bad things from Blaise's: nausea and heartburn to kill. I keep waiting for that glimmer in the 2nd trimester that is always promised and which I did see in my last two pregnancies. I'm pretty sure it doesn't exist this go round.

I have never, ever, ever, ever been this tired, and I pushed myself on 3-4 hours of sleep a night in college. Nothing compared to this. Blaise has been completely weaned because that was an added drain on my energy, but he still insists on sleeping in our bed at night. About half the time I pass out with the little man while putting him to bed at 8:30 or so. Then I wake up with him most mornings, and then I end up napping nearly every day.

I have tried everything to figure out what might make my stomach feel somewhat settled - added vitamins (helps sometimes), small meals, spicy, no spicy, eliminate sugar, and so forth. It's disheartening to constantly feel so gross.


The little man is growing as healthily as he can. Lucky us got to see him twice via ultrasound. The first one back in December that let us peek and see that we were adding to our army of brave little men was only half done - the technician didn't get any looks at his heart, and we decided since that was something we did want to check up on, we'd schedule a second look.

Thus, last week, we got to see BabyO III a second time. Isn't he just gorgeous? He's got a personality unto himself already. Little man keeps his ankles crossed, from what we can tell, pretty much all the time.

The calm stops there though. His tiny fists are nonstop. I keep telling the boys that their brother can hear them and all the chaotic noise they make, and he's coming our punching. Ready or not...

We don't name our boys until post birth, but even with a well rounded boys' name list from the past two, I'm drawing blanks right and left for this one. Good thing I have some time to work on thinking of possibilities. If you have any favorite male saints, do share! 

Here is an obligatory bump shot at 24 weeks, 3 days, awkwardly posed selfie just for you:

Pulled in LegenDaddy for the full length (and please do enjoy the art space my boyOs have created in front of the fireplace).

And since I took the bump photos yesterday post-Mass and you care about my outfit details, I'm linking up with What I Wore Sunday over at FLAP. Enjoy my "Finally wearing maternity clothes but they don't fit quite right yet" outfit.

What I'm sporting:

Dress: Gap Maternity Grey Sweater Dress
Scarf: A gift from my mama awhile back
Leggings: Aerie, found at TJ Maxx, many a year ago
Shoes: Birks, found at Savers for $8 (!)

Also, this outfit did not hold up to the chilly temps Rochester was sporting yesterday. I have decided threadbare leggings just don't cut it. And perhaps a sweater next time...

More fun outfits put together for Mass to be found here.

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This post 24 Weeks + WIWS {Vol.3} first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 27 January 2014

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Weekly Capture: First in the New Year!

I know, I know, we're more than halfway through January, and I definitely owe you some family updates. But you know how sometimes life thinks it humorous to keep knocking you down? Yup, we've had little things (and a few big) keep whacking our feet from under us since November. Car troubles, a broken water heater, a funeral, the polar vortex, several random sicknesses, and then a rousing round of the stomach flu. It just hasn't let up. I have high hopes for the rest of January.

New Year's found us down at my grandparents' "Farm." The family as a whole refers to it as a farm, and even though at one point it did host a few domestic animals, now it's just dogs, cats, and a whole lotta land. Oh, and four residences that not only host my grandparents, but also one of my aunts and her family and several of my cousins.

Bet your New Year's celebrations didn't feature an accordionist. 

It's become a family tradition for the whole extended family to attempt to make it back each year for New Year's. To be noted, our family is HUGE: 2 grandparents, their 7 kids (and spouses), 35 grandkids, 8 grandkids-in-law, AND 15 great-grandkids (a few of them are still cooking). More than half the people made it back this year, which made for quite the New Years Eve party, complete with mass and dinner out at a restaurant that amazingly invites us back year after year.

Movie Time at The Farm where VHS still reigns strong.

Our trip was extended by a day due to a crazy snow storm blowing it's way across New York and Pennsylvania. Our choice of safety over getting home ended up being extra wise because Blaise came down with the stomach flu that night. The poor baby just wanted water, and every time he drank it, it came up again. Blech. Mostly all over LegenDaddy and I. Nothing like being at the end of a trip, pretty much out of clothes, and your remaining clothes being puked upon.

By offering Blaise a tablespoon of water and 1/2" slices of bananas every 30-45 minutes, we had him holding food by morning. Despite my typical aversion to medicating children, we offered him Baby Tylenol to counteract a fever he was running and to help him calm down and rest some. We still got barely any sleep, but it was enough to head homeward the next day.

Sick days.

Oh, and just to add some drama, one of my cousins (local to the area) had a baby, and another had her car break down on the way home and had to be rescued, so her car could be repaired. You know, the life of a big family.

Once home, we were already to the 10th day of Christmas. We ended the Season with a celebration of LegenDaddy's birthday and some simple family at time on Twelfth Night before Dom and David succumbed to the stomach flu on Epiphany. This kept our Epiphany celebrations rather limited -- the boys unwrapped their final Christmas gift, which was a set of Three Kings by Playmobil. I was the last to fall to the bug three days later.

The next week was fairly uneventful, but my boy did turn 2 (!). He's grown up so, so much in the past few months, and I cannot believe that Mr. Blaise is already as old as his brother was when B was born. If you haven't read his birth story yet and are into that sort of thing, you can check it out here. I know I'm always a sucker for birth stories.

We're up in the calendar to this past week. We had a pretty great week; our car did not. The beginning of the week found our solo vehicle in the shop for rusted brake lines. And by the end of the week (ie. yesterday), it was back in the shop, this time for an alternator + battery replacement. So, it has been a somewhat expensive week for us.

In between those two shop visits, our car transported us down to DC for the March for Life.  It was by far the coldest one I've been to in the past 11 years. Oh my! Our poor boys, despite their being used to ridiculous NY temps, were freezing. Dom was crying off and on from his hands being just SO cold. With the windchill, the weather dropped to as low as 3 during the day. But, March we did.

One bundled boy ready to March for Life.
My aunt and uncle, who live within an hour of the Capitol, graciously let us camp out at their house as home base, so on Wednesday, we parked at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and then took the Metro in. I'd love to go back again when I have more time to peek in every chapel - it was so beautiful though. What an awe-inspiring place to be. I also hope we can attend a mass next time. Blaise was sure it was in actuality a castle.

And home again, home again, jiggity jog! We are back in The House of O prepping for a small party with some friends to celebrate Blaise later today, and then back into the grind of what I am so hoping will be a few drama-less weeks.

All my hopes for being a more frequent poster have *not* been forgotten - I promise. I feel like the worst blogger ever. However, if you're even still reading this, I was nominated for not one, but Two (!) Sheenazing Awards over at A Knotted Life. If you feel like spreading the love, vote for me in either Best Under Appreciated Blog OR Best Lifestyle Blog HERE. I'm so honored to be amongst so many greats, and a huge thank you to whoever you were that nominated me. =)

What has your January been like thus far? I hope you've been more healthy, had less car problems, and perhaps even been warmer than us! 

Here's to seeing more of you and you seeing more of me Soon!


Want to follow my blog? It's easy - subscribe via the RSS or email links in the top righthand corner. 
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All rights reserved. ©Sarah G. Ortiz
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This post Weekly Capture: First in the New Year! first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 25 January 2014

Monday, January 13, 2014

What I'm Planning to Read in 2014

Reading is always a big deal in our house, and it is the only goal I set annually. Resolutions be gone - let the book lists triumph!

I am doing a wee bit better than last year in getting my book list of what I plan to read in 2014. Last year I got it out the 14th, and I'm squeezing it out on the 13th this year. Here's last year's list for reference. Tiny steps, tiny steps. I also gave so much thought to this year's list as I truly hope to finish each and every one of these books. Since I plan to be super pregnant or nursing a newborn a good chunk of the year, I think the completion might be doable.

First off, I aim to finish these that I'm currently reading:


The Unaborted Socrates: A Dramatic Debate on the Issues Surrounding Abortion by Peter Kreeft

Chosen and Cherished: Biblical Wisdom for Your Marriage by Kimberly Hahn

And then *here* is my list for 2014



The Complete Stories by Flannery O'Connor I've heard ever so many wonderful things about Ms. O'Connor, but I've never read anything written by her, so this is the year. Any suggestions on where to start?

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente Both Haley and Molly had high recommendations, and I feel I always need some "lighter" fiction.

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson The movie was kinda fun, and I'm intrigued to read the original story written in 1938.

Blaze (or Love in the Time of Supervillains) by Laurie Boyle Crompton Another YA fiction - I know the author and have been meaning to pick up her book for some time.

Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell I've seen several of Ms. Gaskell's works in movie form, but this is the first time I'm picking up a reading copy. I also got it free in the ITunes bookstore, so I can read from my phone when I'm in random situations where I am not carrying an actual book - midwife appointments, the gym, and the like.



Orthodoxy by G. K. Chesterton This was on last year's list, but here goes try #2.

The Sinner's Guide to Natural Family Planning by Simcha Fisher Got this one preordered to arrive in February as a present from LegenDaddy. And you can't go wrong with Simcha, right?

Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism by Temple Grandin I happened upon Temple Grandin, the movie about the title named woman, sometime with the last two years. It was a most fascinating story, and when I saw this book recently, I knew it had to make this year's list. If you haven't watched the movie, I highly recommend it.

Birth Matters: A Midwife's Manifesta by Ina May Gaskin I am not having a home birth this go round, but midwifery, home births, and the natural and beautiful process of birth is something I find fascinating.

Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska: Divine Mercy in My Soul Another gift - I don't know if I'll make it all the way through as I hope to read in short snippets over the course of the months.

A Year with C. S. Lewis: Daily Readings from His Classic Works Also a gift, maybe if I actually read daily, I will be able to fill my year with wisdom from Mr. Lewis. 



Seven Novels by Jane Austen As part of the Motherhood and Jane Austen Book Club this year, I will get to reread all of Ms. Austen's novels. Well, six of them, and I might as well read her unfinished ones, too. So definitely on for six of them; we'll see about the rest. 

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling I began rereading these in 2013, and I now only have two left to have completely reread the series, so read I shall.

Also, you can check out this post to see what I DID read in 2013. Ya know, if you want to see what I can accomplish and such.

What's on YOUR list to read this year? Have you read any of the ones on mine? Any other recommendations? I'd love a few more fiction reads to add to my list!

Happy Reading in 2014!


Want to follow my blog? It's easy - subscribe via the RSS or email links in the top righthand corner. 
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All rights reserved. ©Sarah G. Ortiz
::This blog post may contain Amazon Affiliate links. 
By clicking through to make a purchase, you help to financially support TO+M::

This post What I'm Planning to Read in 2014 first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 13 January 2014 

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