Going to Bed on the 4th of July

4th of July 2017

This year, I live in a neighborhood with lots of families, so I was wondering how bedtime would go during the fourth of July week. Every evening, there were fireworks being set off and they didn’t stop till midnight usually. However, bedtime went okay for baby. I was rather surprised but happy. I think it helped that he heard them going off and knew what they were before he started on bedtime. He slept through the fireworks each evening. It was rather odd now that I think about it, how he had a hard time sleeping after the firework holiday was over with. Maybe he got used to the fireworks?

I couldn’t go to sleep though. I was envying my baby as he slept through the fireworks. I surely could not do that. I had to wait till 1am till I could even think of sleeping. However, that is my usual time that I end up going to bed anyways.

It’s so odd how a baby can sleep through fireworks, but awaken at other things like noises of someone talking. I do have a white noise machine to cover up some house noises though and I’m sure that helps with house noise. I know though that it did not cover up the fireworks as the fireworks were way too loud.

Gotta write and run as it is nearing my bedtime. I guess I’ll be getting to bed past my bedtime again…..as happens to often.

You are You

So, I often hear this phrase, “if she/he can do it, so can I/you”. Seriously? Do you really think everyone can do what everyone else can do? That is really dumb. I especially hate it when people use it when comparing themselves to others and insulting the other person because they can’t do something. So, why am I writing about this?

Well, because people say it to me often when I say I can’t do something. I really can’t do it and they don’t believe me. They say, “You’re just lazy”…..”That’s just an excuse”. It gets me mad every time. I know who I am and what I can do. I have my limitations, but I guess I’m not an individual. I guess that everyone forgets that we are all individuals and are all different in our capabilities. I never impose that ridiculous saying on anyone because it is so not true.

Always remember that everyone is different and no one is the same. We are all individuals and are all capable of different things. Some things we cannot do. Other things we can do very well. Just imagine if everyone was the same….what a boring world that would be!

A Busy Month

It will be a busy time for me beginning next week. I have to make a list of everything I need for myself and baby to take on a plane trip from CA to KS and it will be a two day plane trip because baby can’t sit still for a whole day of flying. He has also developed a huge appetite lately and wants to eat food or breastmilk every hour. I do food one hour and breastfeeding the next hour. I’ll be bringing a lot of baby food for just one flight. I also ordered a portable high chair and crib (for the hotel stays) so we’ll see how that works (or doesn’t work). This will be baby’s first flight so we’ll see how he likes or doesn’t like it.

I will also be living with my sister for about a month till the furniture arrives at the place where we will actually be living. So, living at a place for a month and then picking up and moving elsewhere is gonna be a chore also. I also don’t think baby will like not being able to mess up everything in my sister’s house. At home right now, he has many areas that we allow him to mess up around the house so he can satisfy his curiosity and need to be adventurous. Baby will also need to accustom himself to eating and sleeping in a new environment. So, that might be a little stressful.

When we get to the new house, some baby-proofing is going to need to be done.  I need to get permission to do that so I’m going to try magnetic ones that don’t use screws or whatnot. We’ll see how they work or don’t work.

I also have to find a babysitter/nanny/housekeeper since dad will be going out of the country for his job for a while. Since baby doesn’t like new people and takes a while getting used to someone new, this will be stressful also. Also, not all babysitters/hired help are reliable or actually put in some effort. They just want to do nothing and get paid for sitting down on their butt. So, that is something I need to watch out for also. I may consider getting cameras/security system installed for this reason.

So, yep, a busy month is ahead. I think it will be a busy two months actually. If not longer than that. Dad/husband will be busy too helping us move and getting himself ready for his new post outside the country.

I haven’t forgotten my book. It will be ready for sale eventually.

Note: Image is one I found online. I did not create it.

www.kathleenivanchildrensauthor.com

 

Kids and Toys

Before I had my baby, I had certain expectations about toys. I didn’t really want to give my boy fifty million toys. However, I figured out later on that lots of toys are almost a necessity for their development. However, there is a difference between a toy-toy and a learning toy. We have lots of learning toys and that is the difference.So, we have our home basically occupied by baby toys/stuff in almost all the rooms.

We also have things that really aren’t toys but help him develop also. Things like empty water bottles we give him to crush. This helps with muscle development in his hands. We also give him paper and junk mail to rip. That helps with the muscle development in his hands also. He also likes chewing on plastic cups and his sippy cup. This helps with his teething issues. Actually, many things are a “chewie” basically that helps his teething. He even wants our hands to be his chewies but we tell him no for that one. We have the regular chewies that are sold for teething, but he seems to like non-regular chewies better.

So, you see, toys can be basically anything for babies. Some we buy and others just come to us in the mail. Other toys come from when we buy stuff on our grocery list. There’s no end to the items that can be a toy for a baby.

www.kathleenivanchildrensauthor.com

 

Kid-Friendly Businesses?!

Today’s businesses are often trying to be kid friendly so that they won’t lose a large part of a possible huge customer base. However, kid friendly is way different than breast feeding mom friendly. The kid friendly places are often for kids who aren’t breastfeeding anymore and can eat “adult” food. I realized this the other day when I took my nearly three month old baby boy with me on a one hour plus drive to the “big city”.

Once we got to an area where there were a bunch of stores and restaurants, we decided to stop and eat and feed the baby. My sister thought Dairy Queen might be a fast but okay place to stop. However, we were wrong. It was a very tiny place, it had loud music playing, and it did not have a bathroom. What kind of eating establishment does not have a bathroom?! So, I told them such and we walked out.

Next, I saw a McDonald’s and I thought that for sure they would have a bathroom, it would not be playing loud music, it would be air-conditioned and that it would have a booth where I could sit and feed baby with my nursing cover over him. It turned out to be air-conditioned, but it was still hot in there so baby was too hot to want to eat. There was also no booths….they only had chairs. At least there was no loud music playing. However, baby was crying and hot and didn’t want to eat in such a condition. If I kept the nursing cover over him he would be burning up.

Finally, at my limit, I got up from the table in the restaurant cussing that it was way too hot. My sister suggested trying the bathroom so that’s what we did. It was only 5 or so degrees cooler but at least I didn’t have to use my nursing cover in there.Thank goodness for a women only bathroom! But then someone went to dry their hands and there was only a blower in there and no paper towels. So, it was louder than a vacuum and baby started crying again. However, he got a little used to it after that and kept on nursing.

I was so mad at the conditions I had to deal with just to be able to sit down and feed my baby. A too hot place, no booth for ease, and a loud environment. I didn’t have a place to sit in the bathroom either so I was sitting on the icky floor. They didn’t even have a diaper changing station in there. In a McDonald’s…..it’s supposed to be kid friendly I thought. Well, evidently this one was not.

Seriously, more things ought to be done to accommodate us nursing moms who would like to take our kids out and not stay in the house and be cooped up for 4-6 months. That’s my opinion anyways.

Overlooking the Obvious

So, when I learned I was pregnant, I was feeling a lot of feelings. Didn’t really expect to get pregnant after 4 years of marriage. I figured it wasn’t in the cards for me, so it took me by surprise.  I thought I would read up on things to be prepared for whatever came my way. I even took a few classes at the hospital where I would deliver the baby. So, I figured I was pretty set to go and I knew the basics to get by with whatever happened when we took the baby home from the hospital. –

Well, I overlooked a few things.  I saw how it said that baby needs to be fed  8-12 times a day for about 4 months. I knew this would be a pain trying to wake up and feed the baby at night and all day every few hours. However, I thought it would just be a 15-20 minute session. So, I figured it wouldn’t be too bad. However, I forgot to add in the time it takes to burp baby and change his diaper. I also forgot to add in the time it would take to get baby to sleep again. Now, I know on a good day that it takes at least an hour to get a feeding session done. However, most times it takes up to two hours because baby is growing and feeds from both sides. He is also picky about how he goes to sleep. It has to be his way or no sleep…come what may. I remember how the lady at one of the classes said that sometimes baby will want to feed for 45 min. I thought this was the exception and just a “sometimes”. Evidently, the lady was just glossing over this fact or making it sound not too bad on purpose.

So, there I was concerned about the actual labor part of having a baby. Yet, that wasn’t the worst part. It was what I wasn’t concerned about that “got me” in the end. It was the breast feeding that took me by surprise even though  I was given little warnings and clues.

Our little boy is growing into a big boy fast. At 4 weeks, he wants to feed every two hours most of the time during the day. Sometimes, it is every hour. So, we just decided that we needed for sure to get formula because his eating needs are demanding. I need time to eat, go to the bathroom, sleep, shower, etc. Can’t do that with a baby who wants to eat all the time unless we have formula to give him in the meantime. We also have started giving him a pacifier and that helps a lot too because sometimes he just wants to suck and not really eat.

Oh, the joys of breastfeeding!

 

Book 1 & Book 2

Book

I have been putting a lot of work and time into my new book which I want to have published by this fall. It didn’t take this much work and time when I published my first book. It took a few months to publish my first book, A PinkBoat Adventure. If I am calculating correctly, it will take me about a year to publish my next book, A PinkBoat Adventure – Part 2: “Kathlean’s Bad Day”.

The new book is coming along just fine in my estimation. I have 21 colored illustrations for inside the book. I also have about 21 pages of text to go along with those illustrations. However, I am going to do some two page spreads for some of the illustrations. That still adds up to at least 42 pages of story/illustrations in the book. My first book, A PinkBoat Adventure, had half as much story/illustrations. There will also be twice as much text/reading in the new book than in the first book. So, this new book will satisfy those children who need “more story to read”. I have also let contractions be used in the story. In the previous book, I avoided using them. So, there are a number of differences in the way the book is being composed and put together.

I am using lulu.com to publish my new book. For my first book, I used Authorhouse.com. There is a big difference between these two companies. I can choose to do all the work with formatting the book using lulu. With Authorhouse, I had them do all the formatting work and a majority of the illustration work. Since I’m doing all the formatting work with lulu, there will be a large difference in the cost it will take to have the book published. With Authorhouse, it was a few thousand without advertising. With lulu, it will be a few hundred without advertising.

I thought you might like a little look behind the scenes of my two books to see how the book world works. Even though it is taking me longer to publish my second book, I really do enjoy doing the work. I like creativity and being a children’s book author is a really good outlet for such.

www.kathleenivanchildrensauthor.com

 

 

 

Sleep and Progress

Girl Sleeping

It’s a little hard to get things done when u don’t get enough sleep. I should know since I’ve not been getting as much sleep as I would like. Usually, the white noise machine I have works to get me to sleep. However, it doesn’t work as good lately. Sometimes, it is because I have to get up and go to the bathroom every few hours. Other times, it’s because I have too many things on my mind that I’m thinking about. Last night and the night before, it was because I was having problems breathing. I had to prop myself up with an extra pillow to actually breathe better and be able to fall asleep. I attribute all these reasons for not getting enough sleep to the baby that is due mid May this year. Yep, it’s nice to be able to blame someone else for once…..LOL.

So, since I get tired easier, I have been slow on my book illustration process. Yes, all the images but one are colored. However, I noticed some defects in a good number of the colorings. Some spaces, when seen in an 8.5″ x 8.5″ format are not with color. So, since my book is going to be an 8.5″ x 8.5″ format I need to fix these issues. I also noticed the lines for the images are not as clear for this size as well. So, I am doing the lines over so they are bolder and the image is much more enticing. I am on image #9 right now regarding these corrections.

After this book is finished, I am going to do another children’s book that is for either boy or girl. I already know the subject matter I am going to put in the book as well as the images. Yep, I’m always trying to think one step ahead even though I’m not there yet.

 

A Cute Afghan

Me and Afghan - 29 Weeks IMG_3284

I received this cute afghan from Leslie Everest last month. I had sent her a pink, wooden sailboat model because it was the prize in a giveaway that I was doing. I didn’t know she was making this. She made it and sent it to me. I like it and it goes with my first book, “A PinkBoat Adventure”. It’s nice and soft as well as warm. So, I have it on the couch in the living room till it gets to summertime weather and it’s too hot for afghans.

I took this picture yesterday. I’m at 29 weeks in this photo and I’m going into 30 weeks in a few days. It will be a boy, so it’s sort of funny that I’m sitting by a pink afghan. But the picture was meant to capture the nice afghan. Nevertheless, it’ll still be a fun picture some day in the future to show to baby. 🙂

www.kathleenivanchildrensauthor.com

 

 

Bad Example Books

It always gets me annoyed when I read in children’s books how kids/teens are disrespectful towards their parents or other authority figures. You see this everywhere actually. That includes the television. But I’m concentrating on the books because adults are creating these books for their young audiences. It’s rather criminal…especially if the author is a parent themselves.

Whenever I have read a book, it was for fun. I always liked reading mystery and adventure books when I was younger. I never liked books that had bad behavior in them because it ruined the book for me. When I was school aged, these types of books that had misbehaved children/teens actually bored me. Now that I’m an adult, these types of books get me annoyed when I read them to do a review. A book should be fun, not include examples of bad behavior for the child to learn.

Now, I like reading factual books that help me to learn something. I’ve read books on understanding childhood behavior, books on understanding adult behaviors and habits, books on religious matters, and books that show me how to do things (like Photoshop). I still like reading mystery/adventure stories but there aren’t many good ones out there anymore. The majority of them include bad adult behavior like murders, infidelity, etc. So, I’ve given up on reading mystery/adventure books for adults. They just don’t cut it with me with the bad behaviors they promulgate in the books. Anybody got any references for adult mystery/adventure stories that don’t include such bad behavior in them?

Yep, books have come a long way. It’s too bad the path that they are taking is one going downhill. My intention in being a children’s author is to create books that don’t have bad behavior in them. My first book was a mystery/adventure. My second one that I am putting together is somewhat of a mystery book, but you don’t realize it until the end of the book. If you are a critical reader, u will see the clues as the story progresses. However, many children today (sadly) aren’t critical readers.

I am going to end on that note.

Later,

Kathleen Ivan

www.kathleenivanchildrensauthor.com

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