Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Quiver gets fuller

Another boy to add to our collection.  And of course the questions have already started about whether or not we are done yet.  What a silly question.  I don't know too many people who planned on 9 kids, what an odd number.  And even if we did I have yet to have a baby that makes me say, "Ewww...I'm done."  They all make me say, "Ok that was worth it, lets do it again."  How can you look at that baby and not want one? 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Which one is Eugene?

We are really tired over here.  We have a house full of sick kids, the dh's work is stressful and of course that little thing hanging over everything: A baby waiting to be born all tends to lend itself to sleepless nights.  Yesterday it hit a fevered pitch.  I had about an hours sleep the night before, I don't think dh got any.  Meanwhile kids are falling asleep on sofas left and right, literally.  I joked that the dh must have some sort of sleep pheromone because every time a kid came near him they would fall asleep.  How I wished I could just sit down and fall asleep. 

Then last night, after prenatal appts and a passover sedar, and dh putting in 10 hours of work we were finally headed home and to bed.  2 of the kids fell asleep in the van, the rest were quiet so I knew they weren't far behind. I asked dh a question but instead of answering me he said, "I think I am falling asleep.  I was just trying to figure out how I was gonna carry you up the stairs."  Yea, I would like to see that one, considering he only out weighs me by about 20 pounds.  And I don't think that 20 pounds of extra muscle is quite gonna cut it for carrying me up the stairs. 

Once home, not even 5 minutes after our conversation, everyone was in bed in record time.  The house was totally quiet by 9:30, everyone was asleep.  And finally so were we.  Around 1 am I could hear our 4 year old coughing and crying.  So I woke the dh to go take care of him.  I would have but it would have taken me more time to just sit up in bed as it would have for dh to go see him and come back.  But poor dh was so out of it.  His response?  "Oh ok.  Which one is Eugene?"  Yea, Eugene.  We have so many kids we don't know which one is which now. 

This am, after I woke up coughing, I told dh I thought he was funny last night . He didn't remember a thing though. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Extreme Couponing

The internet is abuzz with talk about the new series Extreme Couponing I have talked before about how I coupon, but extreme couponing is a bit different; because its extreme.  We aren't talking about leisurely cutting some coupons for things you use everyday.  We are talking devoting days to shopping, cutting, printing, organizing and a saving of tens of thousands of dollars.  I have friends who extreme coupon.  I have seen their stock piles.  I know it works.  Back when I was a teenager, still living at home and we had no money my mother and I could make it out of a grocery store with a weeks worth of groceries for a few dollars.  I have done it on a small scale, I know it can be done on a large scale.  But while it seems like all well and good (some of these people saved $40,000 in 2 years) there are draw backs.  I know, what could you possibly have draw backs with that kind of savings.  I would ask, when you are doing something extreme how could you NOT have draw backs?

1. I think the most obvious would be space.  I don't have space for things in my house the way it is.  And I know lots of other big families face this dilemma as well.  I could simply not imagine having enough toilet paper stored for 2 years when I can't even find the space for 2 weeks worth of tp.  No seriously, if someone has some ideas on how to keep my tp safe so I can buy more and not have this overwhelming fear of running out, please share.  Not to mention if you have to move you would have to bring all that stuff with you.  So if you are prone to moving extreme couponing might not be for you.  Not to mention flooding or earthquakes, I can't even imagine THAT mess.  

2. Recalls.  The last few years have seen recalls on a scale I can't ever remember happening.  Everything from peanut butter to spinach and even formula.  Its bad enough when you have 2 jars of peanut butter and a box of nut bars that have been recalled, I can't imagine dealing with 30 or more of those things. 

3. Allergies or dietary restrictions.  Imagine having enough of a certain food to last you a year only to discover 2 months into it that you or your child has an allergy to one of the ingredients.  Dietary restrictions can include those for health or religious reasons.  Gluten intolerance, passover, Diabetes, high cholesterol, becoming kosher, or just trying to eat a better diet are all reasons that would preclude many items from being stock piled.  Right now we are in the processes of getting rid of all the yeast in our house.  When Passover is over I can once again buy yeast products again, but only 11 months worth.  Because then next year I have to get rid of it all again. 

4. The shows I have watched talk about peoples grocery budgets and then show them shopping and sticking to that budget. But what I have not seen is fresh fruits and veggies.  Now, that might be part of a different budget or maybe they just don't show that since you can't get coupons for them.  But that would definitely throw off any budget that they would have. 

5. Garbage.  When you are buying lots of shelf stable goods you are gonna have lots of packaging.  Most can be recycled I imagine, but a good portion will end up in a landfill somewhere. Especially when one of the secrets to couponing is buying the smallest product for the smallest price, this leaves you with much more waste than if you were to buy 1 of a bigger item than 2 of a smaller one.  The dh recently noticed we are producing less recycling and no more extra garbage because we are using so much fresh food.  So I know it does make a difference. 

6. This is not really a problem of extreme couponing as it is a problem of personality: hoarding things you don't need now and may never use.  On one of the shows a woman had tons of diapers and yet had no children.  Shes thinking when she does she will be all set.  Expect you have no idea how many you will need in a certain size, you might want to cloth diaper instead or use a different brand, and your child might not tolerate those brand of diapers.  I think it would be a much better idea to donate those diapers to someone who could actually use them.  The one guy who made up care packages for the troops is a wonderful example of extreme couponing done right.  But personally knowing people who buy and buy and buy because they have the coupon even though they don't need it I know it can cause problems.   I don't think even the most frugal person wants to eat chicken noodle soup every day for 2 years just to not have to throw out expired soup. 

Couponing can be done right, you can avoid those pitfalls, but you have to be disciplined and smart about your purchases.  As much time and effort that is put into getting stuff for nearly free you can spare a little more so you can avoid some of these problems.  That said, I am upset dh forgot my coupon book ahead of his walmart trip after work.  It was sitting right out on the desk!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I'm 4 days past my due date....

You know what that means right? Yes!  It means everyone in the house gets sick!  What fun.  This is what I get for going on a date with the dh last night.  How dare I go out and relax and enjoy myself one last time before the baby comes.  Actually, there are few things as pathetic as a little boy crying for water because hes thirsty only to throw it up as soon as he drank it.  It breaks my heart when they are sick, even if they get sick at the worst possible time.  The last time I had a baby we had an entire house down with the flu.  Including myself.  Hopefully the baby will stay put till this has cleared out (yes, I did just hope to be pregnant even longer).  Actually given my track record we should be fine.  I am sure the baby won't make an appearance till next weekend. 

And heres a belly pic.  Not much has changed.  Baby is quite low so it looks like I haven't grown much in the last 3 weeks. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spilled Water

I have been trying to come up with a good analogy to having been hugely pregnant 9 times.  Not just pregnant but really pregnant.  Beyond what normal pregnancy is.  8 times I have gone post dates.  Thats beyond 42 weeks.  8 times.  In a row.  I know lots of women with as many or more kids as me and not 1 has that kind of track record.  Someone could do a paper on me.  I could be a great science experiment.  Its not a distinction I enjoy though.  I loath it.  With every fiber of my being.

First, let me dispense with the misconceptions.  No, It does not get easier every time I do it.  It gets harder.  No, they don't just fall out.  I wish. Today I am 3 days from my due date, guess whose not holding their breath for an on time baby?

Now, I finally came up with a good analogy parents can understand.  Being this far along each time is kinda like when your child spills something on the floor.  Sometimes its not such a big deal, you just figure God wanted you to mop.  Other times its when the child spills an entire 2 liter of strawberry soda on the floor 10 minutes before guests are supposed to be coming over for a party and you were up all night the night before and already had a massive headache.  Then there are the in between times when its is certainly inconvenient and a lot of work but not the end of the world.  Are all your pregnancies the same?  Mine aren't.  I have had some that were easy sailing, where 42 weeks didn't seem to be that big of a deal.  Then there are other times where I was beyond done at 36 weeks.  And I don't mean I was impatient.  I was in severe pain and ill.  That everyday seemed like an eternity, where life all around was awful and distressing and I could barely function let alone deal with things like deaths, refinancing, moving, illnesses, etc.

This time its more of an in between pregnancy.  I am not miserable, yet at least.  But its not been easy either.  I think God wants me to be nocturnal.  Between the night sweats and the acid reflux I can't sleep at night.  During the day, sure no problem.  But I have these things, called kids, that don't seem to do well without a mother present much of the day.  

But there is one thing I really do enjoy about going late every time.  When I talk to a stranger and they inevitable ask when I am due and I get to say Last week or 2 weeks ago their eyes get big like saucers and they take 2 steps back.  Everytime.  Like I am about to drop the baby on the floor right there.  Then I get to laugh at them and walk away.  Yea...thats fun.  Almost as fun as when they ask if this is my 1st!