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4 months old.

The little girlie babe is 4 months old.  Oh, the things I love…love…love about her…  She gives me open-mouth slobbery kisses on my cheeks all the time.  She loves it when I kiss her everywhere…the look of enjoyment on her face is priceless.  She squeals at the top of her lungs when she’s happy and content.  She giggles more often now too.  I love to take naps with her.  Though, it’s harder to put her to sleep because she wants to be awake.  She can’t sleep until she holds onto the collar of my shirt or puts her little hand on my face — I know it’s because she wants to make sure I stay put while she sleeps.  She likes to sleep nose to nose.

Mornings with Dhara are delightful because she’s so alive and ready to live a new day.  I love to hold both her arms around my neck and pretend that she’s hugging me — she loves it too.  It’s so amazing how much this little one has touched my heart.  I can’t even begin to explain it.  God did such a good thing.  Oh, and she rolled over for the first time this past week!  From her stomach to her back.  She doesn’t even realize she’s doing it. : ) 

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a slice of organic life [not alice waters].

For the past couple weeks I’ve been egg hunting.  And I don’t mean Easter egg hunting.  I’ve been looking for a local farm that sells fresh eggs (and raw milk!).  It’s simply amazing what having a baby can do to you, because you tend to only want the most natural foods, clothes, skincare and toys for your little person.  So I started calling local farms in my county.  The only farm I didn’t call was the one in our neck of the woods.  We actually live in their woods and on their land.  So I called them up today and found out they don’t sell fresh eggs or raw milk.  But, they have an employee that sells fresh eggs.  So I called Silka — is her name, and will be meeting her at the farm down the street to pick up 2 dozen fresh eggs every couple weeks.

For raw milk, it just so happens that raw milk is illegal in my state.  You have to be on the “in” with a local dairy farmer for raw milk.  I’m certainly not in any “in” group, so the nearby South Mountain Creamery (a milk delivery service!) is my next best bet.  They sell the closest (grass fed, hormone free, unhomogenized) to raw milk that you can get.  They also sell local honey, fresh butter, granola, fresh yogurt, cheeses, and pasture raised beef, pork, and lamb.  And the best part is they deliver for a really small fee of $3.75 for any sized order.  They deliver your standing order on a weekly, biweekly, or once a month basis — whichever you prefer.  I just placed an order for fresh milk, butter, and whole grain bread.  Can you tell how excited I am right now? : )

In Real Food for Mother and Baby, the author emphasizes the need for real milk (and real eggs):

  • Real milk is from grass-fed cows
  • Real milk comes from cows that are not treated with hormones
  • Real milk is raw
  • Real milk is not homogenized
  • Real milk is whole milk

indian baby massage.

One of my most treasured times of the day is sunset.  The sun setting is my cue to gather my tired baby for her bedtime routine — a massage and bath.  My bedtime routine for her goes as such,

  • feed her so she has a full and happy belly,
  • lay out a blanket on the ground,
  • choose a natural oil [I use apricot oil, jojoba oil, or olive oil],
  • put on a little soft folk music like Allison Krauss, Brandi Carlile or Sara Groves,
  • dim the lights, or use candle light — which is my preference,
  • choose a lovely cotton nightgown for afterwards to have good dreams in,
  • and lastly, massage and bathe away…

This really sets the atmosphere and gives baby a time to relax from her hard taxing day of being out and about and learning a ton of new and exciting things.  I love massage and bathtime because I know that she loves it.  It’s comforting and relaxing for her.  It makes her feel loved and cherished.  Sometimes life does get in the way of this special time, and we have to give her a quickie massage and bath without the elaborate massage, but I do hope to make this a loving routine for however many children God gives us.

A dear friend, Lakshmi, came over a week ago to give Dhara an Indian massage and bath.  Dhara absolutely loved the massage.  The Indian styled bath, much different than her tub bath, we have to work on. : )  In India, people use warm sesame oil to massage babies.  Sesame oil has therapeutic and ayurvedic properties that really relax babies and promote well being.  It easily penetrates the skin, has a cooling effect on the body, and is rich in vitamin E.

I kid you not, the photo above shows how she slept after Lakshmi’s massage and bath!  Sweet dreams little one.

winner! {kimono top give-away}

We have a winner!

Thank you all so much for entering my first ever little contest!  It was so much fun!  But sadly, there can only be one winner.

Drum roll, please.  And the winner, chosen at random, is #16, Suri!

Suri, please email your address to shopsusiemey@gmail.com so that I can mail you the baby kimono top.

This whole give-away thing can be addicting for sure.  I think I am definitely up for another one in the near future!  Thanks for playing!

give-away! kimono top in 70’s wallpaper print.

Anyone is welcome to enter!  To win this baby kimono top in a whimsy 70’s wallpaper print [handmade by me], here’s how you can enter:

Leave a comment on my blog stating your favorite springtime activity.

Those overseas are also welcome to join!  The contest ends this Friday, April 16th (midnight) and I’ll announce the winner, chosen through a random generator, the following day!

Note: This kimono top is gender neutral, so whether you have a baby boy or girl, it will be a sweet little addition to their wardrobe.  Don’t have a little one?  This would also make a darling gift!

Sewn with attention to detail, kimono tops are made with 100% clean cotton.  Ties on outside and inside.  Tops come in sizes 0-3 months, 3-6 months, and 6-12 months.  Please let me know your size preference when you leave your comment.  Thanks!

just beachy. [plus, a give-away!].

Before I go any further with this post, please tune in tomorrow for my first ever give-away contest!!!  [Can’t…contain…excitement…]  : )

So this past weekend we drove off to the beach to visit Dhara’s Grandpa + Grandma Smith and her Aunt Beth.  We ate at the lovely Georgia House for lunch for the second time.  I think I love that place.  The food is just so simple + so yummy, nothing fancy.  I got a club sandwich on wheatberry bread with sweet potato french fries.  Soooo good.  I just might have to convince the husband to stop there every time we go to the beach.  Another place I wouldn’t mind stopping at next time is the local antique store Greg’s mom took us to.

I’ve been to many an antique store and I’ve only been to a few that actually have things I like, and this is one of them.  [The other 2 are in Dayton, Ohio and Carbondale, Illinois].  I picked up some goods for a summer garden party I’m planning for Dhara’s half birthday.  Something sweet, pretty and girly.  [Once I found out Dhara’s due date was around Christmas time, I knew we had to do a half birthday for the poor gal.  To have your birthday during the Christmas season is just not fair!]  So come June, we’ll be throwing her a fun little summer party in the woods with her little girl friends and little girl cousins.

Back to our weekend — I picked up some large, old, blue and green glass mason canning jars to serve as lanterns for candles, and as vases for wildflowers.  These are the old school kind with zinc lids.  I also picked up a linen, embroidered napkin, and a beautiful vintage girl’s dress made of the most thin, airy, wispy, yet crisp kind of cotton.  My most favorite kind — I wish they sold this kind by the yard — I would probably purchase the whole bolt and then some.  : )

It was also important to Greg that we got Dhara’s toes in the sand and ocean for the first time!  She’s definitely going to be a little water baby like her daddy.  Growing up, Greg spent his summers at the beach and in the water, and so we’re pretty sure that Dhara will look forward to her beach summers.

the meager beginnings of a vegetable garden, pt 1.

I am not a gardener.  At least not yet.  I don’t have a green thumb.  At least I don’t know if I do.  What makes me want a garden is having a baby in a world where food is filled with preservatives, pesticides, hormones, and the unreal.  I want my baby to eat real food.  My friend, Tina, recommended a book called Real Food for Mother and Baby by Nina Planck.  I’ll write a review on this book in a future post, but for now, something the author says that really resonates with me is:

“Real food is old and it’s traditional.  “Old” means we’ve been eating these foods for a long time…  The Old Foods Pantry is ample and diverse.  Meat, fish, poultry, milk, cheese, yogurt, nuts, berries, potatoes, leaves, lentils, chick peas, honey–and their close relations–are all old foods of good standing in our diet.”

I know I want to stick to whole and locally grown foods for my baby.  We live out in the country where farms and local produce are readily available, but we thought we’d also try our hand in growing a vegetable (some fruits) garden.  Now, we know nothing about gardening, except the watering part.  But we thought we’d give it a shot anyway, and learn as we go.  There is SO much information out there on gardening, I wish someone wrote a simple book on growing an organic garden — maybe even a gardening book for kids would be helpful to me.  : )

So first things first:  How do we want to build our garden?

After doing a little research, we thought that a raised bed would be better because it allows for a warmer atmosphere for plants to grow, versus growing them in the earth, where it is much cooler.  Although, I did read that some plants do better growing in cooler environments.

So off we went to Home Depot to pick up wood!  We wanted cedar or redwood to make our garden bed.  Come to realize they only sold pine wood and pressure treated pine wood (chemicals to preserve the wood from rotting and termites).  We were assured by the person in that department that everyone uses the pressure treated pine for gardening, but Greg purchased the untreated pine anyway.  He didn’t like the idea of an organic garden contained in chemically treated wood.  After doing more research, Greg came across an eco-friendly hardware store in old town Kensington, called Amicus Green.  There he found an all-natural oil that would preserve the untreated pine wood for years to come.  Score.  The typical Home Depot or hardware store does not carry something like this.

Since we live in deerland, we need to build a fence to keep the deer away if we want to taste the fruits of our labor.  Next up, fencing a garden.