Friday, June 28, 2013

School Room Follow-Up

I had a few other thoughts and a few questions after the school room post, so I thought I'd do a follow-up bullet style. This is kind of all jumbled up with my answers in with other random thoughts, so enjoy trying to muddle through it!
  • Am I a robot?  Well, actually I am somewhat of a machine when it comes to organizing. I can walk into a room and have it organized in my mind immediately. Now, depending on how "far gone" a room is it might take some time to actually make what I have in my head happen, but I'd say organization is a strong gifting that I have. Baking...not so much. Ehh, it's give and take.
  • When I'm organizing I'm always thinking about how to make it "work" the best. If a room isn't workable it won't stay organized very long. I also ALWAYS include the people who need to use the space while I'm organizing. For instance, when Manly moved into his office space he put me in charge of organization of his office supplies and desk things. While I did most of the work, I made sure to ask questions about how he likes things so that I'd be able to get it put together in a way that would work for him. The same thing is true with kids. They usually have a pretty cool opinion on how they'd like their space to work. Just ask. Most of the time you can make what they'd like happen.
  • ALWAYS use the workforce you have to help you complete a job. Sure, I would rather do most things on my own, but then the kids would be going nuts in another room and I'd feel like I needed to stop to spend time with them. There is ALWAYS something that EVERYONE can do. It might be slinging a feather duster around, or nailing up the shelf(obviously Manly's job!), but give them a job to help them feel important and part of the project.
  • When we were working on the playroom/dining room/school room/quiet room overhaul I put people in areas I knew they'd do well in. For instance, Addi LOVES to organize. She's much like me. She's also very fast, so I usually put her close to me so that I can give her jobs she can easily finish and move on to other things. Her job while we were moving things out of the quiet closet was to empty out the floor puzzles, count the pieces to be sure none were missing, then put them into the new boxes. She LOVED this job! While she was doing that I had Brubbs taking the boxes to the recycle area. He loves doing "boy jobs" like trash, so he was content to watch Addi and be ready when she handed him the empty boxes. He also stacked the new boxes once they were full. The big girls carried the filled boxes up the stairs to where Manly was working to get the shelves installed. By the time I was finished cleaning out the quiet closet he was finished with the shelves and I was able to load them the way I wanted.
  • Use the materials you have in your own home to help with projects. Unless it's Monday I'm ALWAYS using my laundry baskets and bags for other things. When we unloaded the school shelves I had the kids help me by putting the books into the laundry baskets, then Manly would hoist them up the stairs. Once he'd get them up there I would put them up on the shelves myself so I'd have them where I wanted them while the kids were busy loading up the next basket. This is how we do most tasks from cleaning up dinner to cleaning out the garage. Everyone gets a job and it gets the JOB done quickly.
  • Always put the people who work best together...together! If you have two kids who really don't get along well don't try to get them to work together while you are doing a big project. That's for another time and another place! Pick teams that work well together. In our case it's usually Addi and Olivia, and Isaiah and KK, but sometimes there are things that require a switch up. For instance if I need the strength of the big kids I'll put them on a job together and use the little kids to do other things.
  •  Work quickly and make fast decisions. When I'm cleaning out a space and get to something I think I should trash I do it immediately. This keeps me from deciding to keep useless stuff and usually gets me finished in record time.
  • You should know, if you don't already, that I do all things QUICKLY. If I'm cleaning I'm usually almost running. I HAVE to be fast. If I didn't do things quickly the kids would start to take over the house. I usually have only a few minutes to complete a task before I need to get back to them or give them a new job, so I've learned to move fast. The entire project we just finished took us less than half a day. Probably about 4 hours total.
  • Keep some things for when the kids are in bed. My kids take fantastic naps, so I can usually finish up any project like the one we just did at nap time. I usually don't like to do ANYTHING at nap time other than blog or watching hulu on my laptop in my bedroom, because momma needs to rest too, but there are times when putting the finishing touches on a project is just the right thing to get me feeling refreshed. In this case, I waited until the kids were resting to get everything just the way I wanted on the shelves. I had already put it all on the shelves so that it would be up out of their hands, but I wanted to be sure, like I mentioned earlier, that I had things in a good working order. SO, I put all the math manipulatives together and all the art supplies together. I also used this time to decorate the space so that when the kids were up from their nap they could come in and be surprised with the finished project. It was much like Christmas morning for them too. That's the biggest perk of finishing up a project while they are sleeping-the surprise element. Love that!
  • What I DON'T like to do with the kids while I'm really working on something is to put a movie on for them. Sure I'll do that here and there if I just need a few minutes to finish up on something or in the afternoons while I'm cooking dinner, but when it's going to be a little longer I don't like to do TV because my kids(I don't know about yours) ALWAYS end up being uninterested in the TV and more interested in what I'm doing. In that case they would just be coming in mid-job and not really know what's going on and ask a million and one questions and pretty much just need busy jobs. If they are part from the beginning this keeps most of the questions at bay and helps keep your own attitude in check as well. Working as a family isn't always the easiest job in the world, but it's worth it in the end. Promise.
  • Try to only do big projects when your man is home to help. This may mean having to wait a while. In my case it was several MONTHS, but it was worth it when I FINALLY saw "school room" on Manly's post-it for the day(I'll tell you more about Manly's strange post-it issues another time...)! Trying to do things you weren't made to do(like carrying really heavy baskets of books up the stairs or moving furniture) will just get you frustrated and hurt. Ask your man when a good time would be to get your project done and wait.
  •  In our case I tried to make the space not only workable, but growable. For instance, right now we have those five tiny chairs, but as my big girls get bigger they will outgrown the little chairs and table. When that happens we'll install another higher desk on the opposite wall with full-size chairs. When I was putting the room together I had that in mind. It's the end result of the project. We just aren't ready for it yet.
  • Put the baby in a sling or swing. My Eli loves being in the swing. Probably more than being slinged, but do whatever works so they have a happy mood. You DON'T want to try to be working while you have a fussy baby, so be sure to include time to stop and play with or feed the baby. They don't know you have a giant project going on, so they aren't going to stop being a baby for the day. I used the help of Manly too, so that's another reason to wait for your man to be there. When he had to run to Lowes to get a part he needed he took some of the kids with him while I stayed home and nursed the baby. Now, don't think I don't get frazzled when I'm in the middle of something and thinking the baby will still sleep another 45 minutes only to find him crying after a 15 minute cat-nap. But, TRY to include "the baby de-railed my plans" time.
  • Use Ziploc bags!! I use Ziplocs to help organize ALL the time. I prefer the freezer kind because they are thicker and more durable, but whatever you have on hand will work. I use zip locks to micro organize things like party supplies, then put them all into one big tote labeled "Party things." When I'm looking for the zebra party plates I know they'll be in the party things basket, I just need to look in there and they'd all be in a Ziploc. Some of you coupon queens can probably get the real deal for a few cents, but I always just get the store brand to save money. I get them in all sizes. My favorite is the gallon size.
OK, I think that's it for now. Feel free to ask any other questions. Honestly, this is work I LOVE to do. My two favorite things are organizing spaces and planning parties. Put me on a sewing machine or in a gym and I wouldn't know WHAT to do. Strange hobbies, maybe, but it's just something I love love love to do with my "free time."

AND, for those of you wondering what I did with the quiet closet.

I spent about an hour the next day(while Manly was setting up the pool with the kids outside) and made THIS!
Olivia now has her own "room." She doesn't sleep in there, but that's about the only time she isn't in there unless I have other things for us to do. She loves to sew and paint and create things, so this space is perfect for her. She asked me what I was going to do with the quiet closet and I told her I was going to store supplies in there. Little did she know it was her OWN supplies! She was SO surprised, thankful, and EXCITED when I asked her to go in there and get me a roll of paper towels! Ha! She said afterwards, "MOM! I'm SO glad you didn't use my studio to store paper towels! That would just be SUCH a waste of space!" Ha!
This is right after she walked in. I used the shelf we'd had in there. I just took out one level and put it back together. Manly found the chair on one of his early morning runs out by the side of the road as trash. I simply added some fluff and fabric from Lulu's sewing stash and had a new chair in about 5 minutes. She LOVES it!!

Since I took these pictures she has totally decorated the walls with her drawings and other projects.
This is one of the old bookshelves from the old school room. It fits in there perfectly.
I put a few of my own things in there too(like the wrapping paper/gift bag organizer), but it's all stuff I don't mind her using. She feels so big and independent in that space. She even cleaned it today while we were picking up the rest of the house without being asked.

Total cost to me for this project? ZERO dollars. Yet it's priceless to Livi.
Thankful for a way to bless this sweet girl for all the hard work she helps me do.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The School Room of My Dreams

Since we began homeschooling over four years ago I have battled the "where do we do school blues."
 We started off doing school around the kitchen table, which was fine when I was just schooling one child, but as our family has grown and we've realized we really like homeschooling I decided there's just too much stuff to get out and put back away every day. It's always been my wish to have a proper school room, but with six kids and all their stuff the reality of it ever actually happening seemed slim.
We have a three bedroom house with a formal dining room and loft, so when we moved in I decided to make the formal dining room(which is covered in light carpet that I didn't want too ruin with kids eating on it) the office/school room. We put the playroom in the loft, and I spent my Rhea Lana earnings to create the playroom space I wanted. When we put it together we bought five child size chairs, and two shelves and a desk. I had the playroom really organized with clear boxes and lids to keep toys off the floor and give the kids choices when playing. The kids loved the space and they all have room to spread out to play.
It's always worked out great, but now it has become necessary to use the dining room for what it's made for. EATING. We've outgrown the table in the eat-in kitchen, so we needed to be able to put the leaves in the humongo table in the dining room we'd been using for school and start eating in there. When we decided to do that I decided I'd like to move the school room upstairs into the loft so that we'd have a nice big space to eat. (Yes, that means eating on carpet, but I'm hoping to pull it up this fall for concrete.) That meant we would need a functional space that would not only include the kids toys, but also be a school room AND I'd need to bring the things from the "quiet closet" upstairs as well. Where would we put all that stuff?
I had these as my inspiration. Who doesn't LOVE the container store? I mean, come on. Clean, organized, sleek, orderly...I could go on and on.

So began the purge of 2013. Well, one of them anyway. Manly always tells me the kids are going to be sleeping with one eye open because I always throw their stuff away and get rid of stuff while they aren't paying attention or sometimes while they are right there playing in the room. They have some things that I know not to try to get rid of(like KK's Bolt dog, Brubbs cars, and Mia's baby dolls), but overall, they know that we just don't keep a ton of stuff they don't play with on a regular basis.
I have always been anti-toys in the bedrooms. The kids each have two toys(except Mia who always ends up with 5-6 somehow) that they keep in their beds to sleep with, but that's it. Everything else has always been stored in the playroom. I am a firm believer of bedrooms are for sleeping. If bedrooms are trashed with millions of stimulating toys kids will have a terrible time trying to sleep in there! If you ask me it's worth it to put two kids in the same room so that you can use one room to store their stuff and one room for them to sleep, but that's just me and MY opinion. ANYWAY, that's another post...
SO, after purging, I had Manly install two additional shelves to my already shelved wall. This would mean that I could store twice the amount of stuff, the shelves would just be a little closer together. The shelves were a really inexpensive fix. We got both of them and the hardware to hang them for less than $40.(And, as a side note, I bought Lowes gift cards at Kroger because it was 4X gas points, so I got a BOATLOAD of Kroger points which basically earned me free gas. AWESOME) I also bought several shoebox sized boxes with colorful lids. At first I was going to go with white, but since the space is open and full of natural light, and because the space would be used for the kids, I decided to go with colors that would match the chairs that were already in there.
I used the boxes to store all kinds of things from floor puzzles to counting bears and blocks. I was able to store all the things from my school room shelves AND the quiet closet onto the shelves in the new school room with room to spare.
I used the larger toys to fill space on the shelves. They serve as décor now, but will eventually also be stored in the closets. I love the color they add to the room.
One of my other favorite things about this is an idea that isn't quite completed, but I figured out a way to show you anyway. 
This is all of the board games. I wasn't crazy about them being stacked on the shelf not looking a cute as everything else. I also needed to figure out a way to hang charts and posters from time to time, so I decided to put a strip of wither weather stripping or cork board on the edge of the top shelf. This will allow anything to be hung with bulldog clips and thumb tacks. The best part?! It covers the board games completely, but it's still really easy to get to them.
I was able to get all my teacher/student books into the armoire that had once stored dress-up clothes and large toys. Now the dress-up clothes are in the large locking hope chest in Isaiah's room.
I sat up a reading area because my kids LOVE to read. In the next few weeks we are going to raise the lights and the white board about a foot, and add in a small desk space and chair for myself. The bean bag will go on the other side of the bookshelf after that as the entire wall opposite the wall in this picture is open.
It does drive me bonkers that the back of the armoire is exposed, but Manly assures me no one cares. Ha! I'll likely paint it white as soon as I get a chance so it doesn't bug me so much.

I had all the toy boxes stacked in the bedrooms while I worked, still not knowing for sure what we would do with them. There were 6 boxes with toys in them, and a puppet stage(which I used for school from time to time, but it takes up quite a bit of space) that needed a new home. I also needed to find a space for all the kids large toys(like doll houses, pirate ships, and massive dump trucks.). SO, I ended up cleaning out closets as well. We had a TON of space in the tops of the kids closets that were just going to waste with sleeping bags and backpacks, so I used that space to store the toy boxes. They still can't get to them on their own, and I have them stored in a way that works: dolls and "little people" are in the girls room, and cars, trains, and balls are in the boys room. So far they haven't even asked to play with those things anyway now that the school room is so enticing, so we may be doing another purge soon...Ha!
The girls' room toys.

The boys' room toys
I thought the puppet stage looked GREAT with the décor of our boy room, so I just threw it in the corner in there.

I realized after the peek at the closets you might want to see the kids rooms, so I took a quick pic of each room.

Girl room, obviously. It's like the pinkest pink you'll ever see. Seriously. The theme is Smittle Sisters Horse Ranch.

Boy room. It always looks a little brighter blue in pictures. Right now KK sleeps on the top bunk in there so that's why there are pink blankets in there. This room theme is New Orleans jazz...for now.

I put the rest of the big toys on our cubbies. I think they look OK. Not perfect, but it works. We painted these old cubbies a few months back and it's been one of my best ideas. Each child has their own and it's where they put there Bible's, Awana stuff, and any other personal stuff that is JUST THEIRS. I have to remind them to keep them tidy, but they love having their own space...
SO, there you have it. My new school room and peeks into the kids rooms. I'm so happy with how it turned out! I can't wait for school to start now!! History, anyone???

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Saying Good Bye to Palin

So, back in October of last year we adopted Palin as our first real family dog. Aside from a dog we had for two weeks when Olivia was a baby, this was the first time we'd had a pet other than a beta fish. Once we got started looking I quickly realized we might be biting off more than we could chew, but honestly, at that point it seemed too late to back out. Looking back I should have just done that, but I just didn't want to break my Lulu's heart and I really thought we might be able to pull it off with her love of animals and Manly's amazing patience.
When we found Palin she had been found in the woods as a puppy who's mother was ran over by a car. She'd never been around humans before, so she was VERY shy and scared of EVERYTHING and EVERYBODY. It was both great and a little hard in the beginning, because we didn't have to worry about her jumping up on the kids or snapping at us, but she would NOT come to us or even hold her head up around us. Olivia was a little sad that Palin wouldn't do "regular dog things," but we told her just to keep loving her and eventually she would start to come out of her shell.

Olivia started going out and sitting with her every day for several hours. She'd take a book out and read it while petting her and talking to her. After a few days Palin would be sitting waiting for her to come. A few weeks into it she started coming off the porch, and after a few months Palin would follow Olivia around the yard and Olivia even leash trained her. When we first got her she couldn't walk on a leash at all. Olivia was such a great trainer; she'd just love on Palin even if she was having a hard time. As time went by Palin decided that the Smittle family wasn't so bad afterall. She fell in LOVE with Brubbs. She'd follow him around and lick him and love on him. He'd lay on her and just talk and play with her. They were such sweet friends! Even Mia warmed up to her.
One day, after a few weeks we were sitting around the school table and Palin was sitting in the living room and she barked for the first time! The kids were SO excited that she did a "regular dog thing!" After that day there was barking at just about anything that could POSSIBLY be a threat.
Palin learned to dig and hide bones. She made LOTS of holes in our yard. She also LOVED to spy on our neighbors. She'd peek at them through the slots in the fence or under the fence. She learned to go for walks with us. She learned to chase after a ball and bring it back. She started getting excited when we'd come outside. This ended up being the start of her knocking the kids down, but it was just because she was a big girl and they weren't ready for that yet.
She learned to come in and sleep in her crate at night.  She learned to scratch at the window if she wanted to come in or wanted Olivia to come out and play.
There were strange things about her. She would not sleep in her dog house. She wouldn't come to Scotty. EVER. She loved leftover veggies. She had to learn to shake off when wet. She loved baths.
Sadly, a few weeks ago, Palin's curiosity started getting the best of her and she started getting out of our fence and going to visit the neighbors. This wouldn't have been that big of a deal, but we live on a REALLY busy street, and I couldn't imagine her getting hit by a car right in front of the kids. She also started killing a LOT of birds and squirrels. This would be totally cool if she lived in a normal home, but for Olivia, our future animal rescuer, it was torture! She would just cry and cry every time she'd kill one and bring it as a trophy to the back door. So sad!
Palin also started pushing down and scratching/biting the kids. While I would have loved to train that out of her I honestly didn't have the time or money for it. It's totally my fault that was an issue, but it also played into our decision.
Anyway, we finally came to the decision that it was time to look and see if there was something we could do. We contacted the shelter we got her from and immediately the lady who originally found Palin contacted us and said her heart and home were always open to Palin and that she'd come meet us and pick her up the next day.

It was the HARDEST thing we've had to do as parents. Olivia actually was the one to finally say she thought Palin needed a new home, but that didn't change the fact that she loved her very much and would miss her terribly! She spent the next 24 hours crying and loving on Palin. We took lots of pictures to put together a photo book. We went through all of Palin's favorite things to get her ready to move. Olivia took her for one last walk, then we said goodbye.

 Olivia sobbed. Ms. Lori(her new owner) cried for Olivia and her sweet heart for animals. She even told Olivia she was welcome to come help at the pet adoption days at our local animal supply store. Olivia was delighted to hear that. Ms. Lori promised to keep us updated on Palin's progress moving back into her home. We got this and several other videos.

It seems like Palin has made herself at home. She's doing great having all the land to run and play on and she gets to swim every day and play with lots of other dogs. We got one video of her chasing another dog. Olivia was so proud to see she was so brave that she would play tag with another dog!Seeing these pictures still gets me all sappy and feeling sad, but we know we made the best choice for our family and Palin. We'll miss you, Palin, but we are so happy for you to be in a safe happy home!

Home Brewed Smittle: The Rest of the Story

Did you and/or your parents ever listen to Paul Harvey on the radio? I remember sitting in the truck with my family listening to Paul Harvey stories. I used to love when he'd say, "and now you know the rest of the story." So, I'd like to share "the rest of the story" about our homebirth with you. Now, I've been holding off telling you about it mostly because I was both skeptical and a little afraid of what some of my readers would think. However, I promised to share my entire homebirth story with you, so here you go.
When we had our first homebirth I was a bit uneducated about most things "birthy." I simply wanted to do a homebirth because we'd had several rough goes at delivery in the hospital, and I wanted to be in charge of the way my delivery went. Mia's birth was fantastic, but there was a lot that we didn't know about the first time around. Including placenta encapsulation.
After Mia was born we got the question I was not prepared for, "What do you want us to do with your placenta?" My response was simple, "Uhh. Throw it away!" Scotty was completely disgusted with the thought of a little piece of me being in the trash with yesterday's junk mail. I remember thinking what in the world else was there to do with that "medical waste" besides chunk it! I gave it no more thought until about half way through my pregnancy with Eli.
At one of my prenatal visits, Kim asked me if I had ever heard of placenta encapsulation. After I gave her a funny look she gave me a book and told me I might want to at least read about the benefits of ingesting my own placenta. Still at odds with the thought, the book sat on my bedside table(covered with the latest eddition of Martha Stewart Living) for weeks before I even cracked the cover. Meanwhile, I entered a birth photo contest with our local birth expert. The prize? 50% off a birth service. In my mind, I intended to use the prize(if I won) to get child birth classes. We had never attended classes, and I thought it would be fun to do classes for our last time around.
Well, I WON! I was so excited! When it came time to go to the classes there was just NO WAY we could make it work with Scotty's current work schedule and having to find a sitter for several weeks. SO, we didn't go and I was really bummed thinking my prize was going to go to waste. That's when Nicolle asked if I'd ever considered encapsulation. Ha! I thought to myself, "OH! I need to get that book back to KIM!" But what happened next would change a lot of things in the future! I picked up the book and READ IT!
After that I started to do a lot of research on encapsulation. All I could find were story after story on what great things came from encapsulation. I sat in my room reading about how encapsulation helped with PPD, milk production, and energy levels. When I looked for the BAD effects of encapsulation I found NOTHING.
Now, I should stop here to say that did not change the thought in my mind of it being completely disgusting to ingest part of myself. I know there are lots of people out there who are able to do it without a second thought, but for me it was imposible to think about grinding up a body part and serving it in my latest recipe. I COULD, however, think about taking it like I would any other supplement-in a capsule.
So, I asked Nicolle to encapsulate my placenta! After Eli was born, and the placenta was delivered, Mary(the midwife who assisted Kim) prepared it for Nicolle to come and get it. She placed it in a ziplock bag, and Nicolle came to our house and picked it up. 48 hours later she brought me this cute little jar of capsules that looked like vitamins.
Picture by birth by designs

I simply placed the container in the freezer, where it can literally keep for years if I wanted. Nicolle gave me loose directions to try, but told me to simply play it by ear and take as many as I felt like I needed. When I took the first few capsules I have to admit it was a little strange, but I saw the immediate benefits with a much calmer mood, great milk supply, and a much more even energy level. It would usually take only about a half hour to start feeling the benefits of the capsules. I called them my "placenta pills," but Scotty refers to them as my "chill pills!" Hysterical because they are indeed cold(from being in the freezer), and make me feel "chill." Ha! He said he didn't know what he'd do if I hadn't had them.
I've been using them lately to help with my milk supply while on my cycle. I've always really had a hard time producing milk while on my cycle. The capsules really help keep my milk supply up. I've also really noticed a difference in my hormone levels when I take them. If I start feeling like I'm getting a little nutso I'll just take one or two and in a few minutes I'll start to feel better.
I highly recommend encapsulation to all my friends and family. I know most of you reading this will think it's a little strange, but I promise the benefits will totally outweigh the stigma of giving it a try. I'm happy to try to answer any questions you might have about placenta encapsulation or anything else birthy. I know it may seem really strange.

I'm so thankful for Nicolle and her willingness to educate the community on not just placenta encapsulation, but all things birth related. I'd love for you to contact her with any questions. She's there to help!
And that, my friends, is the REST of the story.
In my best Paul Harvey voice, "Leslie Smittle.....Good day!"

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A New First

I have a new first this summer. This is the first time in several years that I can't wear a maternity swim suit! BOO! Ha!
So, I'm trying to find a really cute one that is both modest and affordable.
Enter Lime Ricki.
Here are the suits I'm trying to chose from. Leave a comment with your vote. If you don't like any of them just keep it to yourself. ;)

Option A(Coral Dot One-Piece)
I like that this suit contains the "color of the year." I'm not entirely sure about the drawstring at front bust. The upside of it being a one piece is that it's a bit cheaper. $55.50 for this little lady.
Option B(Shirred Halter Sail Check Tankini Top with Royal Classic Bottom)
The thought of a two piece makes me a little hivey, but these are all very modest and look like they will hide my tummy. I like the color of this one, and the halter style is a good fit for my body type. I also like the tie in the back being a different color. Total cost for this one is $68.00
Option C(Double-Strap Coral Zulu Tankini Top with Tangerine Classic Bottom)
I like the fun factor of this suit. The back looks a little complicated, but I'm sure I could figure it out. This one also has great colors and adjustable straps. Total Cost $61.00.
Option D(Confetti Underwire Halter Tankini Top with chartreuse classic bottom)
I like this one for several reasons, but mostly because it's on sale. I also like the colors, the gathering on the top, and the tie back. Do you think that this top comes up higher than the others? It looks like you can see more of the bottoms in these pictures. The other downside is that there are no returns or exchanges on this particular suit because it's on sale...Total Cost $31.90!! Yeah, it's pretty cheap!
Now, it's your turn to help me choose! Either comment here or on facebook to tell me which one you like best! Thanks!! P.S. Sorry I don't have a regular blog post today. I have SEVERAL that are half finished that I need to just sit down and finish. Maybe I'll do that while I'm lounging in the backyard pool in my new suit! HA!