So…Yeah.

I just wanted to post to let you know that I didn’t fall off the face of the planet. I have several things planned for posting, but I can’t seem to get back on my feet.

I’ve been having some health issues, so I’ve taken some time to address those but, while I feel better than I did around the holidays, I’m still not 100%. So it might be a little while yet before I can get up and running again.

I did make an art for a contest, which seems like a feat of strength to me right now, haha. Click here if you’re interested in seeing that.

Otherwise, I’ll try and get back on track in the next month. I’ve got some reviews planned, and some more recipes!

Click to Read Something Amazing! (rant incoming)

I’m the first person to recommend buying organic produce when you can, particularly anything that appears on the dirty dozen list. I’m all for clean living and natural remedies and I try to keep an open mind when reading those annoying emails about using coconut oil in 100 different ways. But one thing I cannot stand is getting emails that are click-bait or emails that link you to a website that is clearly trying to sell you a specific product. Like a specific probiotic blend that is somehow so much better than all the other probiotic blends, ever.

It’s particularly frustrating when the email subscriptions started out being helpful and interesting and then became gimmicky.

My biggest beef with this is that it hurts the credibility of the natural movement, if I should call it that. I know, through first hand experience, that removing chemicals from your home and cleaning up your diet actually helps. My health is much better now that I’ve made those changes, and I want to share that with people because I want everyone to feel as good as they possibly can. It does not help when sites start emailing out click-bait, or links that go to a poorly made sales pitch.

I’m tired of getting emails with titles like, “The Scary Reason You’re Suddenly So Forgetful,” or, “This common side-dish CAUSES cancer!” or, “Never eat this surprising food again!” Ugh. I’m a fan of efficiency. I’d like for my email titles to be as succinct as possible so that I can decide if it’s really something I’m interested in before I open the email. Sometimes I open them anyway to see if the email body actually explains the title. It never does (or it’s so rare I can’t think of it happening recently). Most often it’s a paragraph or two with the title repeated several times, one or two of which will be hyperlinked to the page they want you to visit.

The kicker is that sometimes I click on the links. I always feel like an idiot once the page loads, like, what was I expecting to happen, anyway? I knew the page would come up with huge red text blocks interspersed in the regular type with testimonials. Or, the best ones are the videos where someone claiming to be a doctor of something is narrating as a hand “draws” things with dry-erase makers.

If we could just stop circulating these things, that would be great. Because, you and I both know that there are people out there calling the organic food movement phony and labeling supplements as snake-oil. And, sure, sometimes they might be right. In general, they’re not, so it bothers me when I get ammunition against the movement in my inbox that has been sent to me by someone claiming to be a proponent of a natural lifestyle. They lose their credibility in my mind when they send me some link to a sales pitch with a click-bait title. Like they’re trying to dupe someone into giving them money.

Maybe that’s what bothers me the most about it: it feels like they really are snake-oil salesmen. Even if they have a legitimate product. Maybe they need better marketers or something.

It’s also frustrating because sometimes the emails are using your emotions to manipulate you into reading the story. I would much rather just be presented with neutral information that I could decide what to do with after reading. I don’t need to be tricked into clicking on a link because I’m afraid I might miss something vitally important to my health.

The trickery must stop if anyone wants to be taken seriously.

/rant

It turns out…

…the adjustment to two children is more rough than I thought it might be. It may be because hubby was moved to night shift when Hamlette was 6 weeks old, but I’m having a bit of a rough time.

Everyone asks me how Hamlette is sleeping (all. the. time). I want to say, “like a baby” in response, but I never remember to be snarky when someone actually asks. My answer now is, “too well” because I make so much milk, and she takes a long stretch of sleep in the beginning of the night. Like, 4-6 hours straight. I’m not deluded enough to believe it will stay that way, but I am grateful for it. Except for the problem of recurrent blocked ducts/ mild mastitis. It’s the perfect storm of awesome sleep and oversupply and I’m not entirely willing to wake up and pump every two hours. Maybe I should. But first I’m trying a block feeding schedule to try and lower my supply a smidgen at the recommendation of our midwife.

I’m not going to lie, recurring blocked ducts/mild mastitis sucks rocks. But breastfeeding is still absolutely worth it and I haven’t considered weaning. Actually, my main concern with getting pregnant again soon after Hamlette would would be having to wean her before a year. But, I’m pretty stubborn once I’ve made up my mind about something: it would take a whole lot (or, as Hamling says, “a very lot”) of bad to happen to make me use formula. God forbid I ever need to. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to say that formula is terrible (it’s not!) it’s just not my ideal method of feeding my babies.

The reason I missed last Friday’s post was because on top of my third blocked duct I had a wicked sore throat that took until Monday to feel okay again. I got it on Thursday last week. So I spent my time laying around trying to eat and drink stuff and care for a baby and toddler. That was fun.

Other than that, the adjustment is okay. It’s just that I have a nasty habit of overdoing it and paying for it later. I’m hoping to be back up and running here very soon!

Denver Comic Con.

tardis.oliverOur little one is much bigger now, but he still enjoys Comic Con just as much. And he still loves Doctor Who.

We’re going to be running an artist table for Denver Comic Con this year. I may not return next year because they’re requiring everyone, including artists, to have insurance for an amount of product that I will never have. I’m lucky if my product stock reaches a total value of $2,000 and they want insurance for at least $100,000. If the insurance is reasonable, I might do it. I guess I’ll have to look into it. Anyway. This is the fourth year we’ve done this, and we have fun every year. Our son talks about it all year, and he’s very excited to go this year as well.

Attending conventions with a toddler in tow is certainly not easy, even if said toddler loves being there. The atmosphere is overwhelming (even for me) and keeping him entertained is sometimes difficult, believe it or not. If you ever find yourself at a large event like this with a toddler, here are some things we’ve learned with experience:

Always have extra food and drink. This is very important because a hungry/thirsty toddler is much harder to reckon with than a toddler that has had ample snacking and drinking. This may seem like a no-brainer, but I’m saying this because we have run out of food and the consequences are pricey.

Bring a blanket and, if you can, a comfy stroller. Heck, make it two blankets. One for covering the kiddo and one for draping over the top of the stroller for a little noise reduction. It really helps. If you’re manning a table, having an extra cushy blanket is excellent for setting up a makeshift bed underneath the table for sleeping.

Diapers. We cloth diapered through all but one of our cons. We cloth diapered for one of the Salt Lake City ones, which meant I had to do laundry at the hotel. This is hardcore. If you’re staying at a hotel and you normally cloth diaper, buy some disposables for the trip. I did this for our second Salt Lake City convention and I can tell you that it makes everyones life easier. If you’re in town you can just bring an extra wet bag with you and it’s not a big deal to just toss the diapers in your diaper pail at home when the day is done. Or, if you really don’t feel like dealing with it, buy disposables for while you’re at the convention.

Extra clothes. Our son is potty trained at this point and he’s very good at not having accidents. However, it would be unwise for us to travel to the convention center without an extra outfit because children are mess machines. It might be a sippy-cup incident, or something happened with some sort of food, or you just didn’t make the bathroom in time. Whatever it is, having that extra set of clothes is always a good idea. This doesn’t matter as much if you’re staying in a hotel close to the convention center because making a trip to your room isn’t as inconvenient as making the trek all the way back home. But I’d still strongly suggest it because it’s so much easier on everyone to alleviate the discomfort of wet/soiled clothing as soon as humanly possible. Your toddler will thank you, and so will the other con attendees.

Have a backup toy. This is something that’s more for tiny babies. Toddlers will usually find the convention itself entertaining enough -because what toddler doesn’t love to watch LEGO trains?- if you have the patience to sit at a certain display with them. If you get bored of the LEGO train before your toddler (this is highly likely to happen), bring something to entertain him, or yourself. Be sure to be mindful of little hands if you’re entertaining yourself though, watching out of the corner of your eye while reading something is never underrated.

Don’t be afraid to buy treats. Even if your family is on a restrictive diet, or you have an issue with your children consuming sugar (like me), the convention is only three days long. Unless you have a table, you may only be there for one day. Sure, the ice cream costs $5.99 a scoop, but it’s worth it. Especially if you’ve managed to bring plenty of snacks to otherwise entertain the never-ending appetite.

Those are my tips for attending a convention. More specifically, manning a booth or table. The easiest thing to do is find someone to watch the kiddo, but that’s not always possible.

I leave you with my newest piece of art. I’m hoping to sell lots of posters of her!

Hello!

Greetings, interwebs.

This is not the first time I have written an introductory blog. I have learned so much since my last blog and I’m hoping to make this blog much better than my last. I have fallen into the standard blogging pitfalls but I think I’ve learned from my mistakes and I’m ready to give it another shot! So, without further ado:

My name is Jenna. I’m married to an amazing man and we have an amazing son who is just over two years old.

As you may have guessed, the primary focus of this blog is going to be motherhood: for me this means I will write about anything pertaining to being part of a family with children. This might be an entry about backyard chickens, or recipes that I like. There will be some nerdiness happening because my husband and I are quite nerdy: we play World of Warcraft and DotA 2 among other things.

The original name for this blog was going to be Daffodils and Dandelions but that is taken, so I fell back onto my next idea (which took me so long to think of; I really suck at naming things).

There you have it. I’m going to try to post at least once a week. That’s my goal.