Friday, April 17, 2015

We Can't Stop ...

I love this "We Can't Stop...Having Babies" Miley Cyrus parody so much.  I actually had to look up the original after I saw the parody and it makes a lot more sense as a baby/kid song.

"To my girls with the big bump // Growing it over and over again // Remember only God can judge ya'
Can't you see it's we who'll be up all night // Can't you see it's wee who love this life."


I have been an emotional wreck all week since Lakshman got back from the hospital.  We were there for five days and running on adrenaline the whole time.  To say we crashed when we got back home is an understatement.

He was there for failure to thrive and feeding difficulties.  Is there a more chiding, blamey diagnosis possible?  Turns out, yes.

It used to be called maternal deprivation.


That's okay because it is basically putting into words everything I've been feeling.  And what everyone else seems to be thinking too.

I know people want to be helpful.  But it feels like most people seem to think we aren't feeding him.  Or haven't tried.  Or haven't tried sweets or avocado, or whatever food worked for their kid. Their kid. Not mine. (Seriously, I have heard from a lot of people about this. He can't eat mushy stuff!)

Of course, this is completely unfair because so many people have rushed in to be with us and offered to help with the older kids, but when you are already judging yourself so harshly - it's easy to think that everyone else is too.

The mental anguish keeps trickling in.  It was our choice to have a third child.  We already had a boy and girl, one of each is all you need right? Especially when we can't even take care of the baby?  And, at the most basic level - feeding - at that?

I feel like I am fending off CPS when I try telling friends and family about his diagnoses.  Like, "hey, trust us.  He is having problems.  It's not just us.  Really! We love him and take care of him as best as possible." I'm not even sure most of them believe us.

How do I tell everyone that I spend every waking minute with him?  He has been my life for over a year now.

That's why I have this song on repeat right now. I'm his mother.  I have his best interest at heart.  I love him more than you can ever know. I am trying my best.  I am getting him treatment. He is growing, even if he is still failing the growth curve.

We can do what we want, grow who we want, love who we want! 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Cocoa Daisy Reveal | It's 5 o'clock Somewhere

So happy to share my first round of design team work with Cocoa Daisy kits.  These kits were just so much fun to play with.

I just love how springy and fresh this kit feels. I started with a two pager all about our Rodeo Austin visit.  I had so many photos I wanted to include.

Rodeo Austin // When I have a lot of journaling to get down, I find that typing it out is just so much easier and faster.  I love to intersperse the type with embellishments.

Birthday Wish // My favorite part of this kit?  All the fun circle motifs.  Seeing that stamp just inspired me. I interspersed the circles with the transparent embellishments from the kit. 

I love right now // This ampersand is a huge favorite of mine, so I had to make it the focus of a page. I fussy cut some pineapples and added a sprinkle of wooden emojis from the Day in the Life kit.  

Hello Beautiful // I love all the packaging in these kits.  I had to use the hello business card and shipping tag.  I covered the tag in patterned paper.  Instead of doing regular text strips, I did white text on a black background. 

Cards* // And, just because I really did love the packaging (and those gold foil title stickers!) I made an insert for my 2015 Holidays book to hold Nandini's birthday cards.  And there is that ampersand again, stamped this time.  

The kits are open for anyone to purchase today, so go shop before they are gone!  To make sure you always get a chance to get the kits you want and shop early, you can become a subscriber too. 

Here is what I bought and used this month //

They also have extra embellishments in the shop, like those awesome wood veneer emojis. Love!

Thanks for looking through my pages here.  I am so thrilled to be working with the Cocoa Daisy team. 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Around here // March 2015

1// We have a newly ambulatory member of the family.  He was so proud of himself for walking.

We are too. 

This has been a big week for him.  He has been talking a lot and lifted his life long ban on the word Mama.  Yay! No one is more excited about that than I am.  And, I'm sure Dada appreciates the break.

He also got a four week reprieve from weight checks by the pediatrician for all his recent weight gain.  Go Lakshman go!

2// Getting ready for our little girl's Pi Day birthday.

This year is a big one because when "I turn four, I gonna be a baby again."

I wonder if she's trying to tell us something with this?  The psychology at work is quite the mystery.

3// Enjoying the emergence of the sun.  I am so ready for spring now.  I live in Texas now, I don't do winters anymore!  Bring on the flowers and days at the park. Our garden is pretty much planted, but I still love our regular trips to Natural Gardner in our neighborhood.

4// Looking at Anthro's new Indian-inspired line and trying to figure out why the marketing irritates me so much.  The fact that all, save one, of the Indian people are used as photo props, and not protrayed as equals doesn't help. I seem to be getting offended by everything these days.  Don't even get me started on the last episode of the Mindy Project.  Hindus are 'Godless" now?  Nice one Stephen Colbert.

5 // We already broke out the eggs after a recent trip to Target.  For $3 you can buy white craft eggs, to dye and decorate.  These are worth their weight in gold.  Not having to poke holes and wait for all the goop to drip out and then trying to puncture the yolk.  Or worse, hard boiling them and finding a nice pungent little surprise in the most random places around the house.  And, half of them break while dying anyway.

These are sturdy and not plastic.  We dyed them but the result wasn't fantastic.  We are going to paint them next.  I kind of want to make these galaxy eggs really badly.

6 // I feel like the everyone is descending on Austin this week for SXSW.  I am at least equal parts excited and scared.  The traffic is horrific and FOMO is palpable.  Hoping to find at least one fun free concert to take the kids to.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Happy Holi | Holi Ke Din Dil Khil Jaate Hai

Growing up this was the type of Holi celebrations my dreams were made of.  I would pore over the pictures of my parents playing Holi together in India with utter amazement.

Growing up in the 80's in Pennsylvania we just didn't have regular access to Indian stores and I never remember seeing any stocked with Holi color.  It is always too cold there to have much fun anyway.  Playing Holi was the unattainable.  The long lost and left behind celebration I could only dream about.

This is what the Holi of my dreams looks like now.  Sitting down trying to open up more bags of colored powder while I get ambushed by these three.

And, it is way better than I ever imagined.

Fun to the core.

Joyful, a time to let go, get messy and run around wildly together.

 Does life get any better?

Of course I never get stressed the mess going all over? NOT A BIT. 

Ok, a bit.  

But, the car is easy to clean, we go straight in for showers and baths. I worry about the rugs, I do.  Though I make everybody put their clothes in the washing machine as soon as we get home.

I also wrapped my camera body up in bandages so the powder wouldn't get stuck deep inside the mechanism.  It seemed to help.
 Nandini loved it.  Chasing Avinash and running around with their newly made friends.  She was so excited about the new white dress we bought together the day before.  Right at the end she started to worry that her dress was "getting messy".  Really, where?  I don't see anything unusual. 

She totally didn't buy our, "It's getting more beautiful" line.  Smart girl.

Lakshman loves anything that involves chasing his kids around.  They were pretty good about keeping the powder off his head.  They would lovingly dab his legs and feet, just make my heart melt why don't you? Most of that on his face is from me.

Happy Holi everyone!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Lakshman, you are one!

Lakshman, you are one year old!  We can hardly believe how much you have changed and grown!

I think you were getting a cold on the actual day of your birthday.  We stayed home, other than your year one check up.  We played with your animals and I took lots of pictures in the playroom.  Definitely one of your spots in the house.  If you only knew how to climb down the stairs safely we would let you hang out there all the time .

You are the happiest, sweetest and most friendly baby I have ever seen.  Your capacity for joy is enormous.  Either when bouncing in his swing or playing ball with his kids, I have never seen joy and laughter like yours before. You have made friends with at least half the kids in Avinash's kindergarten class.  You play with them so much you have started to recognize them.  And you jump out of my arms when you do so you don't miss out.  You love to poke and prod your friends until they laugh right along with you.

You have a fuzzy head and love to snuggle.  You have only grown more bear like as you grow older much to our delight.

The year has not been with out it's ups and downs though.  You got the flu at the beginning of the year and our pediatrician started to really panic about your lack of weight gain there after.  You are teeny tiny and we are still playing catch up.  A few days after your one year check up the doctor was ready to put you in the hospital.  We managed to hold off on this because you gained a few ounces that week but weekly doctor and therapy visits have become the norm.  We have finally started making progress, but it is slow and steady at best.

Things have been stressful but you have it doesn't seem to have affected you in the slightest thankfully.  We have changed up your diet to include lots more fat and it is helping.

The day before your birthday you were definitely in better spirits than the actual day of.  We went to the botanical garden and soaked in the sunshine.  It was the day of the superbowl, just like the day you were born.

Last year we watched from the hospital right after you were born.  My eyes never even looked at the screen.  My family was there, helping me and helping with the kids.  The very first my mom said after you were born was "He is one lucky baby" thus naming you and anointing you. My best friend, who normally lives over a thousand miles away, miraculously showed up at the hospital too, just in time to meet him on his birthday.

One year later, the day was much less exhausting and thrilling but I am reminded of how we are the lucky ones and how much he has added to our lives.

We are so proud of you and love you so much! Happy Birthday (and one month) Lakshman bear!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Harry Potter Story | LOTW

I am back again on the Studio Calico blog this week for my HP Story layout.  You can check out the feature over here.

It is so simple, but I really love this layout.  The big black letters from this past month's kit are so bold and graphic, I couldn't help but fall in love.  The picture may or may not have anything to do with Harry Potter really, but the baby really does love to wave his arms and cast spells with the big kids all the time.

I actually would like to do more pages about the books we read and listen to.  It is such a big part of our life but I so rarely have any images to go along with it.  Any ideas for scrapping about this would be much appreciated!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Studio Calico Spotlight | Nirupama

I am so honored this month to be spotlighted on the Studio Calico newsletter and blog.  You can hop over there to see my rambling answers to the interview questions, and more importantly, see some new projects I have been up to this month with their kits!

In the meantime, here are some other projects I did earlier on in the month that I haven't shared yet.

 I took the kids to this "teddy bear picnic" and I'm kind of obsessed with it.  Lakshman was dressed a bear of course and totally acted the part.  I'm just so happy I finally have a bear stamp to use now.

 I am taking Marcy Penner's grid class and this layout came about because of that, and all the scraps I had after making another grid page. I love the way the stitching turned out here.  Overall, it was pretty simple to make which is what I love about using grids. 

Another grid page.  These are so addictive to make.   I stitched the squars before gluing them down and sort of alternated adding pop dots underneath. 
This photo is Nandini in an Audrey Hepburn inspired bunny mask, so I had to use this quote from her.  I almost wrote down, "Hoppy girls are the prettiest" but I resisted the pun.  Maybe a card for Easter?

 If you want to see more, please follow my blog here and check me out on pinterest and instagram too. I am running a little sale on my Etsy shop, for washi tape samplers, custom die cuts and more. Just use the code WASHI20 for 20% off anything in my shop.  Thanks so much for stopping by!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Cupid Arrow Valentine's Cards

I am so glad we finally finished Avinash's class Valentine's.  Of course, we had to make them instead of buy them.  My craft stash is just way too big not to.  Plus, Avinash loves doing projects together with a passion and it has been a while since I made time for us to do one together.  

Nandini helped too. She would stamp something on a tag, run to the couch, lay down for five seconds and come running back.  And repeat.  She made her best friend Katie a card over and over again and none for anyone else in her class. 

Avinash and I spent a long time brainstorming about what type of cards to make.  I made a few paper berry baskets.  We thought about paper airplanes and paper prize medallions but the ideas never really came together.  On a whim I grabbed a bunch of stirrer sticks from Starbucks on our last Target run.  

I just love the ideas of arrows (as you can see in Avinash's birthday party decorations this year) and realized I could easily tie it into Valentine's Day.

I have a ton of leftover feathers from a custom Etsy order I made a while back.  The kids love to play with them and these feathers somehow find their way all over the house.  So, basically I jump at any chance to use them up.

The making was pretty simple.  I used twine to tie the feathers on the craft sticks.  The heart stickers for the arrowheads are from a target pack.  Avinash and I cut up scrapbook paper into hearts and I stapled the arrows in place.  We made mostly red and pink ones, but he wanted some blues for the pink haters in his class too.

I am loving how these turned out!  We taped a little package of gummi bears to the back.  We did non-candy last year and I figure it's our turn to hand out the stickiness.  One of the mom's in class loves to ask me if I get my ideas from Pinterest.  I kind of want to tell her, "No, pinterest gets it's ideas from me."  Lol.  Honestly, there are a lot of mom things that I am behind on, but I embrace the stuff I have fun doing and just run with it.



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