Friday, July 20, 2012

Living through a Microscope: Experiment #11 - Delicious bits of simple energy (Homemade Larabars & Energy Bites)

Butterfly Bush Flower

If you had asked me a few nights ago (or about a month ago) if I loved having kids, I may have thrown something sharp and heavy in the general direction of your head. Or something wiggly and squishy. Something that looked like a toddler. A toddler who woke up every 90 minutes screaming for her “taggie” that was hiding somewhere in the midst of the chaos that is our house.

But, on most days, I will be able to answer without the use of projectiles. Sure, as I sit in the bathroom with four fists pounding on the door and 2 squeaky voices screaming, “Mama! Mama! Mama!” I wish I could be like Tracy Jordan in 30 Rock and have a standing semiweekly hotel reservation for one hour to be able “to poop in peace!” Sure, it’s frustrating that 8 of my waking hours are spent sitting on the bathroom floor waiting for someone to poop, wiping someone’s poop or spraying someone’s poop off a diaper. Sure, it would be nice if the only poop I had to wipe was my own.  (Can you tell that Madeline is potty training and my world seems full of poop?)

Sunday, June 24, 2012


My blog has now become pinterestable! I've added "Pin it" buttons to the bottom of each post so you can easily go back and pin your favorites. I may have already pinned my deodorant recipe since I have to go back and reread the recipe each time I make it... Stay cool!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Experiment #10: Homemade Yogurt

So before I start, I apologize. I tried really hard to keep this one short. I mean, seriously. Yogurt is simple to make! But there’s just a lot of information about the art of yogurt making. Probably why the yogurt manual I have is 79 pages…Ok, enough rambling - enjoy!

Please circle the statement that is true. When you go to the pediatrician...
a. At least 10 nurses and the custodial staff know your children by name
b. The receptionist says, “Weren’t you just here yesterday? And last Friday? And the Wednesday before that?”
c. Your pediatrician says they are naming exam room 8 after you
d. The guy at the ticket booth in the parking ramp recognizes your car and takes a few hours off your ticket price because your visits have single handedly paid for the ramp resurfacing
e. All of the above

Guess which one my family would circle. Need a hint?

Largely thanks to Madeline and my post-surgery paranoia, in the 22 months we’ve been attending the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, we have wracked up 66 office visits (including an embarrassing stinky visit), 20 phone calls to the nurse line, 15 days in the hospital, 7 x-rays, 4 ultrasounds, 3 ECHOs, and 2 ER visits. And that’s not even counting Nick and his quasi TB and possible Lyme disease (don't even ask). Yeah, that’s pretty ridiculous. 

Enter yogurt.


You see, at least a quarter of those visits, one ER trip and at least one prescription medication involve digestion issues and/or slow weight gain.

Probiotics (helpful bacteria found in yogurt) offer protection for your digestive system and help with digestion itself. Eating yogurt helps reestablish the healthy bacterial flora in your mouth and body and evidence suggests probiotics can treat certain digestive problems like irritable bowel syndrome and diarrhea, prevent exzema, help with colds and flu, and even treat oral thrush. Yogurt is also high in protein, calcium, vitamins D, B2 and B12, potassium and magnesium, which, as Nora will tell you, is good for healthy bones, strong muscles, not getting sick, and (snicker, snicker) healthy poops and pees.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Just one of those days...Experiment #9: Homemade Whipped Cream

For a year, starting when Nora was 15 months, I worked and Nick stayed home. I worked long hours. I had a 20-50 minute commute (depending on traffic) one way. Many days I left before Nora woke and returned after she was asleep. Then I'd come home and do more work.

It was a fulfilling job, but it was horrendously stressful and, to be honest, I remember very little of Nora from that year. I missed it when she spoke her first sentence. I missed going to her first music class and when she learned to do a summersault. I missed spending time with her. Her incessant talking. Her need to be touched. I even missed having to rock her to sleep. It was a huge relief when we moved to Iowa and I could do my work entirely from home.

But on days like today, I long for the ability to just leave the kids in someone else's care and go disappear for a few (or many) hours into my very own work world.

As I look back on the day, it seemed innocent enough. Just a series of slightly annoying events that slowly accumulated into a giant ball of stressed-out Kristin.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The days are long, but the years are short...

Alas, it has been another 6 months.

Wow. 6 months? Really? I wrote that and had to go back to a calendar and count…January definitely doesn’t seem that long ago. Something my grandma always used to say has been bouncing around in my head lately, “Oh Kristin, don’t wish time away. The days may seem long, but the years are too short.” How true, Grandma Laura, how true. 

So, I feel I need to validate, at least to myself, my extraordinarily long absence. Particularly after stating, in my very last entry, that I wanted to post twice each month. What could I have possibly been doing that prohibited me from posting even once?! 

Yeah, I don't know either. 

Monday, January 9, 2012

Experiment #8: The Pit(s) of Despair (Homemade Deodorant)

My very own homemade deodorant (in a Tom's container)!
So, I was going to post on my recently awesome success with making homemade yogurt, but as I continue to receive an ever growing number of requests to share my homemade deodorant recipe, I thought I'd start the New Year out with a bang (or blast)...of sweet smelling Kristin pits.

The story begins in the summer. Back when it was hot and I was very, very sweaty. So I have peppered this post with pictures from warmer times (rather than pictures of my sweaty pits). 
Thanks to Nick for several of these pictures.

The Pit(s) of Despair
I LOVE The Princess Bride. As I was constructing my post in my head while rocking Madeline to sleep last night, I was thinking about how funny the word "pit" sounded to use as a term for underneath the arms, and the scene in the Pit of Despair from The Princess Bride popped into my head. I thought it was an apt analogy for my own journey from despair to pit bliss.