I’m back!

So sorry about the long absence, my loyal readers, but there have been some things keeping me busy these last few weeks. Number one is the arrival of number two: our adorable new baby, Nicholas. He was born at home after just over 2 1/2 hours of intense labour on Oct 3, the night of the full moon. We had some marvellous grandma care for more than a week afterwards, and are just now on our own–the four of us–to figure out how life has changed with Nicky’s arrival.

Before the birth, I had a terrible cold that laid me up for over 2 1/2 weeks, and which included a sinus infection and a pulled chest muscle–from coughing! How wimpy is that?! But the baby kindly waited until all was healed to make his arrival, thank goodness.

In other words, I haven’t had much time or energy for blogging these last few weeks. But now that things are more or less settled, I’ve been feeling the urge to fill you in about how our frugality collapsed over these last few crazy weeks.

First of all, when I got sick I basically stopped planning meals, which meant every day at around 4 pm we’d ask, “What’s for dinner?” and frantically rush out to Hartmann’s to buy ingredients, or, grab the phone and order a pizza. We had some wonderful help though–my sister-in-law made us a scrumptious dinner of risotto one night and brought it over, and my mom made quite a number of dinners (she came a few days before my due date, and stayed on for nearly a week after Nicky was born–six days late!), including a fantastic huge stew and a delicious mac & cheese, each of which lasted us more than 2 dinners.

I’ve cooked dinner the last two nights though, which has made me feel so good–like I’m really back on track and fully recovered (despite still wearing clothes that are as close to pajamas as clothes can get, and not venturing more than a few blocks from my house). I’m thinking I’ll do a meal plan for the rest of this week and see how that works out.

Another failing point was my cloth tissues and cloth wipes: during my cold, and especially during my sinus infection, I blew my way through about 7 boxes of tissues that I had previously picked up at Costco. The cloth supply just couldn’t keep up with my tap of a nose, but I still stand by them for day-to-day use.

Also, I haven’t been making bread. The bread from the grocery store is great-tasting, but so expensive!! And despite the cost, we still go through a lot of bread. Now that I’m back, I plan to put on a batch today.

So, within these failings, is there anything that we’ve kept true to? Surely there are some wins among the fails?

Well, although we did buy one box of disposable diapers for the little one, we are now starting to use the cloth diapers I bought (for a fantastic deal!) from a friend. There are several kinds we hadn’t tried before, and we’re just getting our groove with them (babies go through SO MANY DIAPERS!!!), but I feel good that we’re starting off right. With our daughter it took us 11 months before trying cloth.

And overall, we really haven’t bought very much stuff for this baby. In fact, we got rid of a few items that weren’t really necessary. Once our little girl started climbing up the changing table, we got rid of it and started to change her on her bed or on the floor. That has not changed with Nicky, and it’s just one less piece of furniture to worry about.

We also sent our crib to my sister, who is expecting in February. We didn’t use it much with our first, and with a bassinet borrowed from my co-worker, we haven’t missed it with this little guy.

We did, however, buy a single mattress, which will go into the new bed that my family so kindly bought for our girl. We haven’t set up the bed yet, but the mattress is now on the floor of our bedroom, where my husband has been sleeping while I am up on the big bed with the 2 kids. For now, whatever allows the most of us to get the most sleep, is the winning situation! Eventually we’ll hope our little girl will spend more time in her own new bed, but we don’t want to impose too many changes on her all at once during this already-crazy time.

And another win was that we scored a bunch of furniture from our basement “free-cycle” in our apartment building: a virtually new Poang chair and ottoman, and an Aneboda chest of drawers which is now housing all of the new tiny diapers and receiving blankets.

Also in that find were some useful and pretty wooden boxes and a huge butcher-block cutting board that fits right on top of the freezer (both also Ikea). Thanks neighbour!

So that’s it! My frugality update for the  last month or so. I’ll try to post as often as I can, even

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5 thoughts on “I’m back!

  1. Congratulations! You were missed.

    Thank you for sharing the not so frugal things as well as the frugal. I have more not so frugal days then frugal and I know even with the best intentions, life gets in the way.

    You are an inspiration.

  2. What a precious baby! Congratulations to you all! As for falling off the frugal wagon, I’d say a home birth qualifies as both frugal and optimal, so your other little remissions are balanced out in frugal karma. Thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures; they made me remember my own first week with my baby…now all of 31 years old! We never forget those precious first moments. The pictures of your daughter with the new baby are priceless.

  3. CONGRATULATIONS! Welcome Baby! I was wondering if that is what was keeping you away. As a family of four, I find it very helpful to cook once serve twice. A standard lasagna recipe will divide between two bread pans. We eat one and freeze the other (after its cool). Same with mac and cheese. I cook a lot in my bread pans because they are a good size for a meal and I can make two identical meals at once, saving the other for later.
    I have also learned to stock my pantry and freezer with fast meals – soups and pasta dishes that can be whipped up in about 20 minutes. Right now my panty needs restocking.
    Welcome back, you were missed.

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