Sustainably Single Parenting

Making the most of life's journey alongside my three!!!

If only… April 5, 2013

If only I could get more sleep. Nohra tends to have her most alert time period between 9pm and Midnight. I feel like I’m neglecting her because I should be engaging her during that time. I should be showing her contrasting colors and talking and reading and listening to classical music…something. But I’m often nodding in and out of sleep, holding her and nursing her while silently flipping the channels on my television and eating ice cream, trying desperately to stay awake.

If only I could sleep peacefully. I still have nightmares, and they’re not just about him. Last night I was being hunted. It was like The Hunger Games meets The Ghost and the Darkness. Dying in my dream would have been more relaxing. I woke up after less than five hours in a twisted position, exhausted from all the running and mental exhaustion from being in constant fear for my life. I didn’t even attempt to fall back to sleep.

If only I could stop eating ice cream bars and poptarts. I don’t even really like them when I’m eating them, but they’re sweet and easy. I am constantly running around and there’s so much to get done and I hardly find the chance to sit and eat. If I sit and eat I miss out on doing something else that I could’ve done while I had the chance. I know, I should stock up on fruit and veggies and easy to eat healthy things. And I will…when our money for food comes in. But then, of course, I have to find the time to brave a shopping trip with three little kids.TimeRunning

If only I could stay on schedule with my Directed Study this semester, and finish my proposals for my last two courses, and turn them in and get them approved.

If only I could start exercising again. I feel so flabby. I know, I know, I had my third baby six weeks ago, and to the outside world I look fine, great even, but I feel fat. And I’m not being my old teenaged delusional self who was really skinny but said she was fat; I’m really out of shape. I haven’t worked out regularly since I had my first daughter, and she’s almost six. I swore that I’d work out during my pregnancy, but I really didn’t do much. I even purchased a Postpartum Yoga with Baby DVD, and I haven’t even opened it. Ugh. I know that I’d feel better if I could start exercising, but I can barely fit in time to breathe.

If only I could stop stressing about these court cases. If only they were all wrapped up and in the past already.

If only I could push past these automatic thoughts/distorted thinking habits. I’ve been doing some work with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy…I’m trying. I’m trying so hard to better myself in various facets. I know that thinking of myself as a failure is one of the feelings/thoughts I must combat. I know that all is not lost because I’m two days late on my homework. Deep down I know these things, but it is not yet habitual for me to change my way of reacting.

If only I could spend a few hours shopping (and not have to worry about my big girls or the fact that I don’t have any money).

If only I could be out in nature awhile. Go hiking or fishing or running. Hell, go rub my hands in the dirt and jump in a puddle.

If only I could have ten minutes to just be, completely alone, without any worries or responsibilities.

If only…if only.


Old Navy’s Stuff & Save Sale October 17, 2012

I LOVE Old Navy, so naturally I love Stuff and Save sales. I began going to the sales when I was in college; the early alert, typically in the form of a canvas bag the size of most reusable shopping bags today, would come folded up and stapled to a flyer or tucked within an envelope via USPS to all Old Navy Card holders. To my recollection, the sales only used to happen bi-annually, but I think they’re having them about four times each year now. I haven’t been keeping track officially, but I remember it being a rare occurrence and now they seem to happen almost back-to-back (I’m not complaining).

I never buy anything full-priced, and my true specialty is shopping out of season. So today, after the girls’ play-therapy session, we headed to Old Navy to see what wonders we could find.

The Stuff and Save bag was the best I’ve seen yet, and not only because it’s purple (my favorite color). It wasn’t snail-mailed out this time, my alerts were an email and a flyer, but not mailing the bags was a good business decision as the bags are so thick and sturdy it would have been extremely pricey to send them through the mail. It’s going to make the perfect farmer’s market bag! The old theory was that whatever you could stuff into the bag was what you saved money on; nowadays you just get a free bag for shopping and save 40% on whatever you buy.

I could use some maternity clothes, but that wasn’t a priority, and I never even made it to look in that section. Still, somehow, we spent over two hours in the store. About 45 minutes of that time was spent standing in the check-out line, but I’ll get to that.

Terra needed a larger size of clothing for next summer. I find it so funny, to have two daughters who are only 21 months apart and born in bordering seasons (Amara near the beginning of summer, and Terra near the beginning of spring), but twice now we have come to find that Amara’s old clothing is not suitable for Terra. It’s not that I’m picky about what Terra wears, but Amara’s growth has been in spurts and she has never needed certain sizes. Terra has grown steadily through each size of clothing, but she rocketed right past several shoe sizes. I don’t get it.

I got Terra tops and tights (she managed to get chocolate on the Cinderella shirt before we bought it).

The girls both got bubble skirts and shorts for next summer.

New jeans and gray pants for Amara













Amara really needed more pants. She is growing so fast right now! Six months ago I went to extremes looking for feasible jeans and pants for her. I was determined to spend $8 or less on each pair. I’m not opposed to shopping at goodwill and thrift shops, but I was having a hard time finding her decent pants for cheap at those places too, and it was too soon for yard sales. After several weeks of  finding one pair of pants here and one pair there I’d comprised a six-pair stash of 5T jeans and pants for less than $40. I was so proud of myself! Now she is almost too tall for all of them.

I got Amara a new bubble shirt and a sweater dress too.

Amara really likes to “dress like Mama” in yoga clothing. I wish the adult-sized clothing was this cheap!












I’m not the most fashion savvy person, but I don’t understand why a perfectly decent, thick, and Christmas-colored cardigan would be in the clearance section. I didn’t ask, I just bought it. So now we’re going to base our Christmas pictures off of Terra’s adorable red cardigan.


Terra’s Christmas cardigan

Did I mention that everything we purchased was from the clearance section? Oh yes, I don’t even look at the other things, except to note what I’ll be excited to see go on clearance!

A few snacks and a few trips to the dressing room, I thought we’d done a great job! Then came the check-out lanes. There is a gift to picking the right check-out lane and I do NOT have it.

We stood there for twenty minutes while two of the four customers in front of us purchased their items.

Things seemed to be going well. I allowed the girls to go up to the large windows and look out until they started arguing loudly about which one of them should be the leader as they walked back and forth between the store’s entrances.

Twenty minutes later we were still behind the third of four customers who’d started in front of us.

Terra loves dresses, and the yellow romper was adorable on her!

Not only had she purchased at least $600 worth of clothing, but there was something wrong with her transaction and we were stuck there waiting for the staff to figure it out. It was far too late to switch lanes, so I had to think quick and find a way to keep the girls entertained.

We wound up playing charades, and a yoga game. Our yoga game is pretty awesome; I use the poses that they know (lion, downward dog, happy baby, volcano, cat, cobra, etc) to tell a story. While I’m telling the story the girls have to do the pose that I mention. Today the story was about a man walking his dog up a mountain that he didn’t know was volcanic. The man and dog had to be as brave as lions to save a trapped cat. It was fun, and the girls got to use their energy in a positive way.

What was more fun? Having my total purchase (combined with my belated birthday coupon, emailed to me by Old Navy) come to $60! I know it’s not pennies, but it’s pretty cheap. If you know of better deals, please tell me!