Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Things that go "Click" in the Night

I have been a night-owl lately, and not by choice.  The little "nugget", or "peanut" or "p-nugget", as we've taken to calling her, likes to eat.  A lot.  

So, I get up.  A lot.  And try to stay awake.  That's where my iPhone has come in handy.  I can catch-up on Facebook and Twitter - not that I really remember what I'm reading, but hey, it keeps me awake.

It's during these times that I have been finding new Apps for my iPhone and I thought I'd share a couple of my recent favorites with you.

Some of you know that I am a Mark Bittman fan.  I love his books, his column, and now his "Slog", which is a combination "salon" & "blog."  

So, I was ecstatic to find his "How to Cook Everything" App for the iPhone - and only $1.99 - for a limited time!
How to Cook Everything (Completely Revised 10th Anniversary Edition), Completely Revised 10th Anniversary Edition: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food
The next App I came across will help me when I'm knitting and don't have time to run 
to the local yarn shop for help.  It's the Vogue Knitting app. 
I like that it has a "Stitchionary" and also goes over basic techniques, as well as 
help "fixing" your mistakes.
The Best of Vogue Knitting Magazine: 25 Years of Articles, Techniques, and Expert Advice

Always nice to know that inspiration is only a "click" away when I'm up in the middle of 
the night.  God bless the "P-Nugget."  And I won't be sad when she starts 
sleeping through the night!

The Real "Tired" Housewife of Sheboygan County

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Motherhood Can be a Pain in the Neck - but it's Worth it!

We've been home from the NICU for 8 days now, and there's one thing I've learned:  Motherhood can wreak havoc on your neck & shoulders!  I am prone to back pain anyway from my years of gymnastics & cheerleading, but there's nothing like gazing downward toward your adorable child to put a kink in your neck.  Two trips to the chiropractor seem to have helped, but I'm hoping I figure something out soon! 
Any suggestions out there for avoiding the new mother syndrome?  How can I avoid looking down at something this cute?!

The Real Housewife of Sheboygan County

Monday, April 19, 2010

Tribute to My Grandaddy:

My Grandaddy passed away yesterday at the age of 91.  He had lots of experiences in his life and we all learned a lot from him.  Here is a tribute I wrote for him:
Granny saying Goodbye - they were married almost 75 years

Tribute to Grandaddy:

I’m sorry that I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye, but I know that you will understand, as I am busy caring for your great-granddaughter, Mary-Claire, and she really needs me right now.

Many kids don’t get to spend much time with their grandparents, but we were lucky in that we spent lots of time with you, especially in the hot summer.  I remember the house before you got air conditioning, something in your later years you couldn’t imagine living without.  If the breeze was blowing from the right (or wrong) direction, the smell from the hog houses was stifling.  Thank goodness you finally gave in and put in central air!  It was worth the money, wasn’t it?

You taught me how to drive when I was probably 11 years old.  Many of my friends didn’t have that opportunity.  I saw calves and pigs being born, rode with you to “count cows”, went to horse shows at the Boone County Fair, an occasional ham breakfast, and we can’t forget the “fiddle contest” that you liked so much.

You took the grandkids to Disneyland and bought our first cars.  You always had “a little money” to give us before we left and told us to “watch our pocketbooks.”  You took us on our first train trip from Jefferson City to Kansas City just because we’d never ridden a train.  You made sure we “spoke to people”. 

As we grew older, you were interested in our careers, but I’m not sure you ever really understood what we did.  It was so different from hauling lime, or farming, but we carried everything you taught us about hard work and being willing to go the extra mile to our “newfangled” jobs and became successful. 

I hope to pass along all the good things your taught me to my daughter, and although you could be cantankerous and bossy, your heart was always in the right place.

As you enter the Lord’s Kingdom, say hello to all those we have lost.  And if it snows and ices up there, make sure to “watch the bridges.” 

Thanks, Grandaddy for everything!


Monday, April 12, 2010

Mary-Claire's Very Big Week!

Just wanted to give an update on Mary-Claire's week!  When I last posted, she was getting ready to go into surgery to repair her intestinal omphalocele.  The surgery went great, and she is a very strong little girl.  The nurses are calling her a "rock star" as she is meeting all of the expectations of the surgeons, and I truly believe that we will be home soon - she is making lots of progress on feeding and is only on supplemental glucose now and no longer being fed via tube.  Practice makes perfect, so we will be doing lots of practicing this week so we can get home to Kohler and she can meet her future best friend, Paddy.
 This is how she looked just after surgery.  Lots of wires and tubes to monitor her every movement and breath.
 Thankfully, she has her daddy's ears!
 And his feet!
 Imagine a sack about the size of an orange on the outside of her body that contained her intestines - and this is what it looks like after surgery.  The surgeons did an incredible job - and she didn't even swell like they thought she would.  
 A close-up - it's even smaller now.  This isn't a real belly-button, but one that the surgeons manufactured.  I think it actually looks much better than most newborns belly-buttons at this age!  
 Grandma Marva, me & Mary-Claire
 Wearing the first hat I crocheted for her - obviously she has her daddy's head, as it's already too small!!
 At peace - most of her wires have been disconnected at this point.
In Grandma's arms after eating.
Wearing a hat that Mama knitted - this one's a little big, but will last longer!

All for now.  It's been an exciting week for us and it's nice to know we have a little over-achiever.  She even has the "corner office" in the NICU.  One of only two pods with a window.  Way to go Mary-Claire!

Thanks for all the good thoughts, prayers and comments.  We are thankful for our friends and family!

The Real Housewife of Sheboygan County

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Mary-Claire's Big Arrival!

It's been quite a week for our family.  On Tuesday we welcomed our first child, Mary-Claire McBride Richerson at 10:13 a.m.  She weighed 6lbs, 14 oz and was 18 1/2 inches long.  I am recovering quite well from the c-section, and that has been the least of our worries.  Here are a few pictures - none of them are the greatest, but hopefully throughout the week I can get a few more.
 First photo - still in the operating room.  I barely got to see her before they whisked her away.  
 In the NICU - she was very stable
 Trying to get comfortable!  Daddy was taking the pictures as Mama was still in surgery.
 Finally, almost 12 hours after delivery, I got to hold her.  Mama was very sick all day, so had to rest.
This was taken yesterday just before her surgery.  We call it her "Pre-Surgery Routine."  Just like the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame, we had her tap the "Play Like a Champion" placard before they took her away.  It seems to have brought her luck, as she came through the surgery like a "champion".  She is still on a breathing tube this morning, but the doctors say she has done very well and most likely will be off the tube later today.  As for her features, she truly looks like her daddy, down to the shape of her fingers & toes.  I do detect a little blond hair, so who knows - maybe she will inherit that from me, but for now, she is definitely her daddy's little girl!  

Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers this week.  She has a lot of people pulling for her, and the good energy is definitely apparent.  We are very thankful for all family and friends, including those who read the blog whom we have not met.  You're the Best!

The Real Housewife of Sheboygan County

Monday, April 5, 2010

Spring is blooming & So am I:

Tomorrow is the big day!  The arrival of our little girl, most likely between 8-9:30 CST.  Exciting times for our family!  My parents arrived yesterday, and dear husband's will meet us in Milwaukee for the big day.  We spent the weekend doing some last minute things - who knows if we are actually prepared?  This is the last picture I will take as a pregnant 42 year old!  
 This morning I took a final walk around my herb garden to see what signs of life were awakening!  We have been lucky this Spring, with no late snowstorms, nor torrential rain, and have even had quite a few days of above average temperatures.  I am hopeful to get tomatoes in the ground before June, which didn't happen last year.  The herb garden is looking promising:
 Chives are always the first to peek through - should have some lovely blossoms in a couple of weeks!
 French Tarragon - I didn't have such good luck with this last summer in my Mediterranean Herb pot, so am hopeful for a more successful year!
 I always have lots of Thyme - I think this is either orange or lemon thyme
And seeing this chocolate mint popping through gives me hope for my favorite mint of all - Kentucky Colonel.  Kentucky Colonel is the best mint I have found for drinks - mojitos, tea, lemonade, etc.  If mine doesn't come up, I will be ordering some for sure!  I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

I can't wait to see what happens in the herb garden while I'm away!  And I will have lots to share with you when I return!

Wish me luck!

The Real Housewife of Sheboygan County
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