The New Normal

I’ve been wanting to post an official “birth story” post, and I keep thinking, “I’ll get to that soon,” and then I woke up and realized Teddy turned 5 weeks old yesterday. So, here I am again typing from my phone. Here is me:

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M1 (Monster #1) has a runny nose and woke up from nap time fussy and upset. I think I actually let her play at the playground too long yesterday. Can you blame me?

M2 is a cuddly sweet monster, whom we suspect may have a dairy allergy. He will be in a deep sleep and then just wake up and totally FREAK out. He also does this sort of unpleasant gagging/spit-up thing whenever he is lying flat on his back. So I am officially off all dairy, since we are breastfeeding. Off. All. Dairy. You have no idea what that means until you try it. That means all desserts that are truly delicious, some breads that have milk in them, not to mention pizza and, sniff…CHEESE. Apparently it can take two weeks for dairy to get out of your system, so we are in a trial phase at the moment. Meanwhile, I’m pretty much holding him non-stop, which is physically exhausting, but totally fine. Newborns are pretty cute. Here is a photo of the little guy I snapped at the park yesterday. You can really see the orange in his hair in this one.

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So, right now I am in survival mode. I’m trying not to feel too bad about letting M1 watch a little more TV than I’d like and not stressing over the dishes piling up beside the sink or the posts that remain unwritten or the art I’m not making. It’s funny, but perhaps because I am so tired or the calming effects of breastfeeding, I don’t feel overwhelmed by all this, I’m really just soaking up every moment, since I know they are so temporary.

(And apparently I need to work on keeping my thumb out of the camera lens…oh well)

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A little bit lighter

We’re back!
I wish I were that diligent blogger, posting minutes after the baby is born an article with amazing photos and charming dialogue of the event. Or perhaps, the blogger who purposely chooses to “savor the moment,” intentionally waiting to blog until the big event has past. The truth is, well, we did get some decent photos, and we did bask in the wonder that is childbirth, but the real reason I haven’t blogged anything for over a month now is because I am freaking exhausted.

That being said, the shop is now up once again and here is some eye candy of our precious new “M2” (aka: Monster #2)
Theodore “Teddy” Lawrence James Gordon

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Frrrrriiiiiieeeeedddddd

For those of you who don’t live in San Diego, you may not know there is a heat wave going on. Today is the third day the thermometer will be edging up near 100 degrees.

My brain and my body are officially fried.

In other more delightful news, my sister gave birth to her baby last Sunday. I can’t wait to meet Miss Castine Elizabeth and I hate that they are so far away.

This puts the age difference between my future little bundle, set to be extracted from my body on May 14th and his cousin at a mere 17 days apart! (That is of course, unless Teddy decides to come earlier).

Over the last week, I’ve literally gotten almost nothing accomplished in my shop. There have been so many distractions (ie: new baby, heat waves, pesty toddlers), non-stress tests, and just pure fatigue that I’m realizing that maybe I should postpone updating my shop until after the baby comes. I apologize if this blog becomes a bit dormant for a few weeks. I am going to at least try and update my Instagram regularly.

I’m sure I was going to write more here, but like I said, be it the hormones or the heat or being at war with the terrible twos, something has come and stolen my brain. I hope to get it back soon. Give it back whom/what ever you are!!

Blessings to you All!

Here’s me on Sunday, before the heat wave….no I will not do an “after heat wave” picture.

Best!

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The Bunny Hop

I am sitting in our bedroom typing in my new office “nook,” which consists of an old fashioned school style desk, complete with lift up table, my desktop computer, my absurdly large printer, and three shelves.  It feels cozy, and practical.  It’s modest, but I see it’s potential.

The toddler naps, much to her chagrin.

The baby pushes his legs up into my ribcage and I groan.

For the most part, I am extremely uncomfortable.  I could digress, but it would probably just sound like a pity party.  Wah!

Okay, and done.

I am trying to convince myself to just start posting and publishing my new work, but I think I may have some anxiety/fear of failure that has subconsciously driven me to distraction lately.  Or maybe it truly is that I just have a lot of sleep-deprived “life” happening, and I am doing my best to just stay afloat.  Either one.

Needless to say, I am here again typing, so I consider that my small step in the right direction.

Last week I worked on photographing most of my cards, to help develop a cohesive/unique style for my shop.

Here they are all lined up in a row:

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You’ll notice some new cards I’ve incorporated into the mix.  I’ll be posting them to my shop soon.

And here is my concept for photographing my cards:

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The background is a pile of books.  I’ve seen a number of really creative ideas on Etsy of other shops incorporating objects into photos of their products, and a pile of books just seemed to fit my style.  I like the different textures.  What do you think?

Photography is definitely not my passion, but I love its ability to create an ambience, especially in the vast space we call the world wide web.  I guess I’ll just have to keep on practicing.

In the same light, I am hoping to photograph our new abode once I get it all cleaned for the in-laws coming to breakfast Easter Sunday.

As far as the baby goes, all evidence at this point indicates a strong, healthy baby.  Although, as I’ve said before, I am not going to be content until I can see him for myself. 29 days to go…

More to come soon soon soon.

A Bit Belated, Bemused, Busy, and well, Bloated

A quick little blip of a post, I know I am overdue.

I was up all night with a sick/teething? toddler.  She now is asleep in the bed next to me.  All I can say is, good, get those teeth in before #2 comes!

We’re officially about 95% moved into our place, and out of all our other places (storage units, living spaces, etc.).  We’re donating an entire closetful worth of books, clothes, kitchenware, and other odds and ends, not to mention the pounds of paper being recycled from all the artwork I’ve saved over the years.  It feels good to cleanse ourselves of all that baggage.  (Especially most of the really bad art I made while in graduate school!)

Of course we didn’t throw away everything.  And it feels good to be surrounded by the friendly faces of our books and other memorabilia.  In fact, I am finding it quite inspirational.  I love our color-coded bookshelves (an idea pirated from friends back in Colorado…much to the demise of certain librarian types who wish all books to be arranged in the Dewey Decimal System, or other such nonsense).

And I finally get to “nest”.  Madelyne has never had her own room, so I never got to decorate a nursery for her.  I am having so much fun putting together the little room she will share with her brother.  Not to mention, all of the beautiful things that have been saved from her baby shower that are now being hung up on the walls.  (Pictures to come soon).

Anyways, I have been working as hard as a woman with a toddler, in her third-trimester can work, getting the house in shape so I can update my shop before the impending arrival of #2.  (Yes, I know I may be crazy–what if my shop takes off right after I have my baby ?? –All I can say to this is: If that is the case, bring it. I am ready for the challenge).

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Progress meets me Here

Woohoo!!  After a very stressful weekend, we finally made a deposit on an apartment.  It’s not in the urban area we had our eye on, close to the zoo and Balboa Park, but the rent is cheap and we will be close to family.  I can go on my jogs, take Madelyne to her classes at the library, and utilize my parent’s backyard.  We move in 9 days.  The baby will be here in 71.  We don’t mess around here folks.

Meanwhile, I have been cranking out work like crazy.  It might be a slightly-stupid move to relaunch my shop right before the baby comes, but I can always get help with the printing and mailing, if my shop happens to take off.  Not holding my breath, but I do like to dream.

I also have been reading and watching videos on SEO and keywords and filling my brain with all of those lovely *snore* things, changing a few titles and keywords on my shop and it seems to be helping.  I am getting more visitors, so you never know.  I guess if you don’t have the right search words, nobody is going to ever find you.  Who knew?

Anyways, they are always showing on blogs and Etsy and Pinterest what people’s studios look like.  They usually are amazing with white-washed hardwood floors, lots of natural light flooding in from giant windows, tall bookshelves filled with all sorts of ephemera and, gorgeous rows of flat files.  A girl can dream.  Anyways, I’d like to share my current studio.  It is one green 12″x12″ box that I can easily close up quickly if a toddler wakes prematurely.  It even has a tupperware water cup.  So far it has worked quite well.  It may not be a spectacular space, but I am proud of my ingenuity.

Also, you can see in the pic one of my latest projects.  I am making two Blake-inspired paintings for the kid’s room.

That’s all for now,

Have a good week!

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Houseful of Hopeful

Well, I’ve been busy again, working hard behind the scenes, and hopefully I will be able to share some new things with you soon.  I also have been redesigning some of the aesthetics of my shop’s and blog’s appearance.  So…watch out!  As far as the baby goes: Yep, I am still pregnant.  I just had a doctor’s appointment and everything sounded/looked normal.  Teddy has been kicking up a storm, which I appreciate, despite the rib kicks and bladder stomping, it signifies to me that he is alive in there and getting strong.  We also scheduled the C-section (Miss Madelyne was breech) for May 15th.  I’ve considered the idea of having a VBAC, but my husband would probably have a heart attack.  Plus, at the end of the day, it is nice to have that date up on the calendar.  So, 77 days to go!

No new news on the job hunt for my husband, but we are vigilant and confident someone will be swept up by his charm and wit.  I know I sure was…  🙂  It is only a matter of time.

Also, I have been seriously researching on how to make my shop more successful/get more views, so I am hopeful that with adding new items and making some small changes, there might be some boost in sales.  Fingers crossed.  If there is one thing I know about myself, it is that I am persistent, and I know how to work at getting what I want, even if it takes time.  I’m pretty sure I am digging my heels on this one.

As far as housing goes, we are still looking.  In fact, we are looking at a place tonight.  Craigslist is a bloody nightmare between all of the housing scams and overpriced apartment complexes.  Every now and then a good place pops up, and I try and respond as quickly as possible, but I’ve been beaten to the punch a few times.  This time, I caught the rental listing 36 minutes after he posted it, and we are going to view it tonight.  Hopefully it is what we are looking for and there is nobody ahead of us so I can stop be a Craigslist troll.

So, here is a semi-spotty, phone photo of me and my belly smiling in fear right before heading to a yoga class.  (Yes, I was successful, although my arms almost died from all the downward dogs, I was still able to bind in side angle pose, which boosted my confidence).

Have a great week!

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Art. Kids. Write. Printshop. Read. Grow. Live. Repeat.