Gabriel's wardrobe malfunction and our (somewhat) updated slideshow

We had Christy, Emily and Mitchell over for our weekly Monday dinner get-together. On the menu tonight was baked Tilapia, fried grit cakes with garlic alfredo sauce and a spinach salad. For dessert we had brownie ice cream sundaes. It was very tasty!

After dinner we let the kids play. Gabriel had to go potty and had already wet his Pull-up. I told him to just put his jeans back on and go commando for a few minutes since it was almost time to get ready for bed. Christy and I are watching Emily and Cadence play Wii bowling when Gabriel comes into the living room with one of each of Cadence's shoes on his feet and his jeans on Kriss Kross stlye with the zipper undone. I ran into the office to grab my camera and was able to get this shot as he bent over to pick something up.

In other news, I'm pretty aggravated with my What to Expect app on my iPhone. Chris and I have been taking a picture of my growing tummy every week and all of a sudden I cannot export the pictures to my library to upload to my slide show on Photobucket. Fortunately, we saved some of the pictures to my library when we originally took them so we aren't missing all of them. Here is the updated slide show:

A little Schaus family history

The Schaus family history is pretty easy to trace thanks to some very dedicated record keepers. In fact, there is a published book that traces the history back to the 1500's, I believe. Recently, my father found some more detailed information about the members of our family that came to North America. Here is a 5 minute lesson in our family:

On June 13, 1846 the "Creole" landed in New York City. On board were Nicholas Schauss and his wife Christina as well as several of their children. Nicholas and Christina were my great, great, great grandparents. Their five-year-old son, Philipp, was my great, great grandfather. Here is the page from the passenger manifest that lists them (they are about half way down):

Christina Schaus died on September 26, 1881 at the age of 76 years. Here is her death certificate:

Nicholas Schauss died on August 4, 1886 at the age of 88 years. I thought that this was a pretty impressively long life for someone during that time. Here is his death certificate:

Philip S. Schaus married twice. His second wife, Hannah, is pictured here with him in this undated photograph:

I visited the homestead of Philip Schaus when I was 12 or so years old on a trip to Canada with my parents. Even at the age of 12 I was able to appreciate the history and had a great time.

When my dad went back a few weeks ago, this is what remained of the house:

Evidently the property has been sold and the house was being torn down and relocated to some property that is still owned by the family. Perhaps someday Chris and I can take our kids and show them the new site for this very old piece of family history.

Moving into the third trimester - baby stuff

We have just started our third trimester and Pistachio's nursery is finished! We fixed the ceiling, hung the curtains and painted it last weekend. This week we put up the tree decal. I am very happy with how it turned out.

It seems like a lot of work to do for a baby that a.) doesn't care what his/her room looks like and b.) won't be using that room for quite some time. We got a great deal on a bassinet at a consignment sale a month or so ago and have that set up in our room. Baby will probably use that for the first few months to make middle-of-the-night feedings easier. In fact, I may even move the rocking chair into our room for a while too.

Short of packing the hospital bag and buying a few more things, we pretty much have everything ready for our little one's arrival. We are planning on using cloth diapers with this baby and we still need to get a few more of those. I have heard wonderful things about Best Bottom diapers and I really want to buy 5-7 or so covers and probably 15-20 inserts to give them a try. We have 7 all-in-one's that I bought new off of Craigslist for $60.00, but I love the idea of being able to swap out the liners if the diaper isn't too messy. I am also very lucky that our daycare has agreed to allow me to bring in cloth diapers. :)

Dear Real World

Dear Real World,

I sent my little girl Cadence out to meet you today. She's the one in the skinny jeans with the brown and pink top and carrying a Wizards of Waverly Place backpack. She has a big new bow in her hair that I made her last week. She is very excited to meet you. I, on the other hand, am scared for her. You and I have known each other a pretty long time and I know how you can be a wonderful place yet sometimes very cruel. I have prepared her as best I could to face you today and I hope that it has been enough. I hope she remembers to say "please" and "thank you" and that she continues to believe that the worst words you can say are "stupid" and "sucks." Please don't teach her any dirty jokes too soon and help her steer clear of kids that might make fun of her. I don't think she understands the concept of being made fun of yet.

Please take care of her, love her, teach her and watch over her. Most of all, please send her home to me at the end of each school day. Tell her that I love her and I'll be there at two-thirty.

Thank you,

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

No, it isn't Christmas. Not yet at least. My favorite time of the year begins in late August and goes all the way through the beginning of January. So many wonderful things happen during that time!

1. The temperatures begin to cool off, the air becomes refreshing and crisp and, eventually, the leaves begin to turn colors.

2. Two Thanksgivings! Since we are a Canadian-American family we don't choose which Thanksgiving to celebrate. We celebrate them both!!

3. My birthday - This year will mark the last birthday of my 20's!! Eeeek!!! Do you know my favorite thing about my birthday? Dairy Queen ice cream cake!!!

4. Even better than my birthday is the anniversary of the day my name changed from Karen to Mommy.

5. I love Halloween! Last year I purchase a Halloween village from Target the day after Halloween along with several really awesome decorations for 50-75% off. I can't wait to put them out this year!!

6. The newest member of our family will be here in November! We are very excited to be welcoming a new member to our family. Also exciting is that I will be able to enjoy the holidays home with my family since I will be on maternity leave until after New Year's. :)

7. Black Friday - Yes, I'm one of those crazies that enjoys getting up at 3am to stand in line for 2 hours to get into Target so I can buy a crock pot for $3.00. This year I will probably have to skip Black Friday shopping since I will have a tiny baby at home; however, I will be there in spirit. Shop on!

8. Christmas lights - Every year we go to McDonald's for some chicken nuggets to-go and take the kids to Hollywild to see the Christmas lights and feed the animals. We have a great time! I enjoy these lights, but I also enjoy all Christmas lights and love how magical people's houses look when they are covered in little electric lights.

9. Christmas - My father always made it a point to separate Christmas from the winter holiday season and I try to do the same with my children. Christmas is the celebration of God's gift to the world. We celebrate it by attending church, participating in nativity programs and giving gifts to each other. Don't get me wrong, I love Jingle Bells, Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph just as much as the next person, but they aren't what Christmas is about.

10. Happy New Year!! This New Year will be bittersweet for me. I will probably be ready to go back to work and do "grown-up" stuff on a daily basis, but it will be difficult to say good-bye to spending all day with my little baby.

Uses for a spilled box of cornstarch

I use cornstarch in place of baby powder on my kids. I've found that it works better and I like that there are no perfumes or other chemicals in it. I had put cornstarch in Gabriel's diaper last weekend and for a few days this week because he had given himself a rash when we were swimming all day. I forgot that I had left to box on top of his dresser. Gabriel on the other hand, did not forget. This is the mess I found this morning:

I didn't have time to clean up the mess this morning before work so during the course of the day I began thinking, "What can I do with this mess that would be productive?" My good friend Google had the answers. After I came home, I used a piece on junk mail to scrape most of the cornstarch out of the carpet. I placed it in a plastic bowl and vacuumed up the rest. Then I began my projects.

Laundry Starch

1. Take an empty plastic spray bottle and make a new label

2. Mix 2 cups warm water and 1 tablespoon corn starch

3. Pour mixture into the bottle and screw on sprayer.

4. Laundry starch is ready to go! Shake bottle before using each time.

Entertain kids with slime so I can make dinner

1. Measure 2 parts cornstarch and 1 part water

2. Add a couple of drops of food coloring.

3. Mix

4. Roll it in your hand and it will be solid.

5. Stop moving it around and it will turn back to liquid. Add more cornstarch or water as necessary. Note: Add water a few drops at a time. A few drops makes a huge difference.

7. Strip kids down and put them in clothes you don't care about. Send them outside with the slime, a bucket of water for rinsing their hands and a towel.