a good day


My sister’s son, Jacob, was born Wednesday night without complication.  I found myself pacing about anxiously the entire day, something I don’t typically do over a baby being born.  But then, my last birth was very difficult, and her last was as well, and you just never know.  I don’t want to be a worrier, but sometimes the worry is so deep within me that I am not even aware.  It wasn’t until I received the phone call and heard the words, “I have a baby in my arms”  that my shoulders relaxed, and I had to fight back tears and I realized that I had been worried, really worried.

This is the hardest postpartum period I have ever experienced.  A phone call with a friend yesterday concluded that it’s no surprise.  A difficult birth, a crowded house, a fussy baby, wintertime.  The perfect storm I guess.  I’m up and down.  And I suppose this will continue until the sun returns and the violets bloom.  In the meantime I remind myself that no matter how bad I might feel one moment, things might feel better the next.  I hug my baby and smell his head.  I treasure him as you would a baby you believe to be your last.

The other day Beatrix proclaimed over Q-tips and watercolor paints, “I’m a great genius at making S’s!”  For some reason her words tickled me so much.  She’s such a confident child.  Shy Larkspur always sends Beatrix ahead to make the preliminary introductions when it comes to making friends with other little girls.  I wonder how I produced such an outgoing little girl.  I’m so glad though, so glad.

I spent a few hours in the kitchen yesterday, a little gift it felt like.  I made quiche, breakfast casserole for the boy who hates quiche, started chicken broth in the crockpot, and made a big batch of homemade deodorant.  Later that evening I cleaned the top of my cluttered dresser, tidied my room, and then watched an episode of Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Knitting Workshop while I nursed Job.  It felt like a good day.

Job’s skin is looking so much better.  And the good news is that I am almost positive wool isn’t the problem at all.  The worst thing for Seth, the other eczema sufferer in our family, is dry air.  I’ve been religiously coating Job’s face in salve, and I think that is helping the most.  Have I mentioned that we think that Job looks nearly identical to Seth as a baby?  I think it’s interesting that they are my two eczema sufferers.

Oh, and the mitts are finished.  I needed to finish them before this weekend and thanks to the season premiere of Downton Abbey and the Call the Midwife Christmas special I did!

p.s.  Deodorant recipes are all over the place, but I’ll share mine for a big batch just in case someone asks.   All measurements are approximate.  To a glass jar I add a scant cup of coconut oil along with a generous tablespoon of shea butter.  Sometimes I add cocoa butter as well.  If it is wintertime I add about a half tablespoon of beeswax pellets, if it is summer I add a whole tablespoon.  The beeswax really improves the consistency of the deodorant.  I place the jar in a pot of simmering water to melt the oils and wax.  In a bowl I add 3/4 cups of baking soda and 1 1/4 cups arrowroot powder and mix.  Once the oil and wax are melted I remove the jar from the pot and add essential oils, typically lavender and tea tree oil.  Then I pour the oil into the dry ingredients and stir until smooth before pouring into containers.


  1. I think I’m gonna try it too this week, painting with q-tips, what a great idea !
    but the paint looks so fluid(liquid), how did you do that ?
    or is it just my impression ?

    me too, Ginny, I read your blog every evening, and I always look forward to that moment.
    I can agree completely with what Laura says, we have so much similarities, and so much we can learn from each other. And often you have so beautiful and wise words …
    Thank you so much ! And keep courage till Spring will come !

  2. Hi Ginny,

    I have followed your blog for a long while but never commented, so wanted to say “hi”. So pleased for your sister and that you can now relax ;). Thank you so much for sharing your deodorant recipe with us, I know there are lots out there but your looks wonderful. As I live in the UK I have ordered my tins from herehttp://tinwaredirect.com/index.php?route=common/home. Not ordered from them before but I like to buy in bulk so they are cheaper.

    Did you watch the Downton Abbey Christmas special? Here in the UK our weather is still pretty mild right now, although we have had a lot more rain than usual, but not as cold as you guys!!

    Sue x

  3. It sounds like a wonderful and productive day. Love your post.

  4. i always have to smile at your Beatrix stories….my GD Leah is a match; never met a stranger, always ‘in control’ and confident (and smack dab in the middle of the 5 children)— there is hardly a photo of her where she doesn’t have her hands around someone’s head—posing them just so. (She’s 7)

    I bet the ‘cousins’ in your family have a ball when they all get together. Happy for your sister (and you!)

    Love the mitts….happy news about the wool allergy (or lack thereof!)

  5. I found your blog several months ago (wish I could remember how as I don’t knit but do read). I so enjoy reading about your family and seeing all the lovely pictures you post. For some reason your blog makes me feel peaceful. I don’t know how you do all you do with 7 children but am greatful you find the time to write. I hope with each passing day you have more good moments than the day before.

  6. I’m glad spring comes early in your parts. One day at a time right? The mitts are lovely, I really do love that color. Have a lovely weekend! xo~

  7. So happy your sister is well and you are having good days. Thank goodness you can keep the wool!!! That would have been a knitting tragedy for sure.

  8. So glad all is well for your sister and baby, and glad you were able to release some of that worry and tension!
    At least spring and flowers come fairly soon to your area… Do you know how long we have to wait for spring?!
    It also seems like Beatrix is quite genius at making people smile!
    I was like that as a child, always, always always, made my little sister be the one to go up and talk to people…

  9. Congratulations on your new nephew! I appreciate your writing so much. It seems like so many people I’m reading and with lately are in a funk, self included. I feel like I have nothing to write about that is worth anything. I’m so glad you had a good day. Silas looks WAY too old in those pics! I feel like it was just a few months ago that HE was born. Oh, and “I treasure him as you would a baby you believe to be your last” really resonated with me. I felt like that with our last one. I don’t know if he will be or not but it just became so apparent to me what a gift each child is and nothing to ever take for granted. Hope today is another good day, Ginny!

  10. Thank you so much for sharing…I look forward to your posts every day! You have such words of wisdom and you remind me that none of us are alone in our journey. So many similarities and so much we can learn from each other. Thank you for posting the deodorant recipe! As I was reading, I was thinking that I would ask for the recipe. And I love the idea of the kids painting with q-tips – mine would love that! I think we’ll try that this week. So glad you had a good day 🙂

  11. Knit, pearl,knit, pearl….breathe….You are doing a great job.

  12. What salve do you use for the eczema? Is there a certain kind of container you recommend for the deodorant? How do you apply it? Thanks!

  13. Hi. Hope you are feeling well. It’s been many years but I remember well how my midwife impressed upon me that each subsequent baby takes extra time to recover from. I took it very seriously. And I only had four! So be very gentle and patient with yourself. Thanks for sharing your sweetness and your family with us in spite of the challenges. Congratulations on the new baby for your sister. Oh, and I still think Job is just about the finest looking baby I have ever seen.

  14. I so look forward to your posts every evening….Blessings to your sister and new nephew! What a wonderful day you had….so productive and filled with family….the best kind! When the sun doesn’t shine for a few days, I start feeling a little low. Spring will be here before we know it and bring with it all kinds of new projects. Love the idea of making your own deodorant and thanks for the recipe. What type of containers do you put it in and how is it applied? Thanks a lot!

  15. Hey, congrats on a new addition to your family, it is lovely to have a nephew. And I just wanted to stop by to tell you that we all have great days and not so great ones. It is life. You may be simply tired/overwhelmed or just adjusting to the new number of the kids that you have. Hugs!

  16. Winter is hard even without sleep deprivation and lots of little ones. ♥ You’re wearing a crown. Never forget that. : )

  17. We have eczema sufferers as well, and we find that making sure they get a nice long bath in lukewarm water does wonders for it!

  18. Bea is such a great genius at S’s. I think I might go around being more confident and kind to myself: “I am a great genius at making scrambled eggs!” or “I am a great genius at folding pants!” Thanks to Bea for the reminder that we could all be more amazed at the things we are able to do!

  19. Congratulations to your sister!! I’m so glad Job is not allergic to wool. I imagine that would be devastating to a knitter. Blessings, Ginny.

  20. Wonderful news that your sister and her newest baby are fine!
    I had never heard of making your own deodorant! Thanks for the recipe- I might give it a try.
    Your gift mitts looked like a treasure. I’ve enjoyed that pattern before and will again.

  21. Don’t know if anyone mentioned it already, but do you have a humidifier or vaporizer? My son has a neurological disorder that causes him to sleep with his eyes open a little bit, and we run a vaporizer all winter to keep his eyes from becoming too dry (along with using an ointment). We also run a humidifier in our bedroom while sleeping and it has made a HUGE difference in how dry our eyes, noses, and skin feel.

  22. Hang in there Ginny! These dark winter days with a wee baby are the hardest. I hope you continue to celebrate the good days, and all the wonderful things you are accomplishing-not the least of which, holding that baby dear.

  23. Ginny – I totally get the emotional up and down thing this time of year, and I haven’t had a baby since 8 years ago! It is a hard time of year. We hardly get any sun in Western PA this time of year which can be really mentally taxing. I’m so glad to hear that you felt you had a productive day. That always helps me as well. Thank you for the deodorant recipe. I use Tom’s of Maine deodorant, but I’ve been wanting to try making my own to see how well it works. I’ve come to the conclusion that I really need to just break down and buy some beeswax. I originally wanted to after you blogged about making your own hand-dipped beeswax birthday candles. My kids would get a real kick out of that (and, who am I kidding, I would too!) Have a blessed day! So glad to hear that your sister had a successful labor and delivery.

  24. may you have more good days/moments in your day and the sun shine soon for you. Keep warm over there.
    Love leanne NZ

  25. Ginny, glad you had a good day. I always treasure the good, ordinary days. Thank you for being honest about your ‘perfect storm.’ It helps me to know I’m not alone.

  26. It will get brighter. The proof is in the chickens. Our 14 laid 5 today so far when last week it was 2! Or at least that is what I am taking that as………best of days to you.

  27. Praying for brighter days ahead for you.

  28. Would love to know your crock pot recipe for chicken broth/ stock!

    • Hi Wanda! This time I just put what was leftover from a roasted chicken (there was a good bit of meat left on the bones along with onions and carrot) in the pot along with a couple teaspoons of cider vinegar and just added water and set it to cook on low for 24 hours or so. I like the recipes from the Nourishing Traditions cookbook for making broth.

      • I have thought about making my own for sometime. I usually buy it. We use so much stock during the winter for soups and at almost $3 a container it gets pricey! Thanks for the directions!

        The pics are precious as usual. You are a blessed mother.

  29. Good morning! Your breakfast casserole looks so yummy. If you have time, could you share the recipe or basic ingredients if there isn’t one? I’m always looking for non-cereal options. Thanks, Ginny! And God bless you and your sweet family!

    • That photo is of a basic quiche (eggs/half and half) I sauteed onions with some basil and some thawed spinach from a box and added that along with mozzarella. For breakfast casserole I first make some fried potatoes–diced red ones fried in bacon grease with some onion and seasoning salt. Then I added some sausage-this time I used some precooked chicken apple, but a pork/sage is good as well. Butter a big glass casserole and add the potato sausage mixture. Sprinkle with grated cheddar. Then pour a mixture of eggs (I typically use 12-15) with a little milk (maybe 1/2 cup?) over top. Bake at 425 or so for 25 minutes-ish?

  30. I’m so glad that wool didn’t turn out to be the problem with eczema… just think of all those lovely knits not being worn by your lovely Job! I hope you have many more good days ahead!

  31. I’m so glad you had a good day Ginny!

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